Sleep Apnea

All About Sleep Apnea and Snoring in Oahu, Honolulu Hawaii 

Looking For An Alternative to CPAP? At Manoa Dental, We Can Treat the Root Cause and Not Just Mask It

What is Sleep Apnea?

Sleep Apnea or obstructive sleep apnea otherwise known as OSA affects more than 18 million Americans each year. It has a higher prevalence in men than in women. It is associated with cardiovascular disease, cancer, Parkinson's, chronic inflammatory disease, the destruction of the stomatognathic system, and many other systemic diseases.  Symptoms include excessive daytime sleepiness loud snoring, choking, or gasping for breath during sleep. Basically, the sleep apnea patient is choking himself/herself to death because the body is not getting enough oxygen. Long-term effects include stroke, hypertension, heart disease, obesity, and, early death. Failure to diagnose and fully treat sleep apnea can lead to a number of secondary yet serious medical conditions, such as high blood pressure, cardiovascular distress, and sleep deprivation.

Causes of Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea is caused by a narrowed airway in combination with the relaxation of the soft tissue in the back of the throat. In addition to the complete blockage of the air pathways, sleep apnea can be caused by neurological signaling failures. Sleep apnea prevents the brain from sending the correct nerve signal that initiates deep breathing. To reinitiate breathing, the brain wakes the body, causing patients to wake frequently throughout the night. While sleep apnea can happen to anyone at any age, there are certain associated risk factors that may increase the likelihood of developing sleep apnea. Among these risk factors include obesity, substance abuse and smoking, genetic predisposition, anatomy, age, and gender. 

Differentiating between Sleep Apnea and Snoring

It is important to note that snoring is an early form of sleep apnea. It is caused by a narrowed airway and the relaxation of the tissues at the back of the throat during sleep. Relaxation causes these tissues to partially block airflow, causing the vibrations and snoring sounds.

In obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), it is characterized by a narrowed airway and the complete blockage due to the collapse of tissues at the back of the throat during sleep, thus completely obstructing airflow. Attempts to compensate for the closure lead to the signature deep snoring as well as the choking or gasping as sufferers try to inhale.

OUR Treatment of Sleep Apnea

What many don't know is that there is a link between your airway and your bite. How your teeth and jaws come together can affect your airway. When your jaw is forward, this opens up the airway, when the jaw is back, this closes the airway. We offer treatment options that will treat the root cause of obstructive sleep apnea, THE AIRWAY. We are able to move your teeth and jaw to a position where your airway will open up and stay open permanently through orthodontics or we can create a dental appliance that is custom fits to open the airway when you sleep and while at the same time prevent clenching and grinding.  But beware, not all appliances are designed the same. Some other appliances are made without any knowledge of the TMJ and airway anatomy which can worsen your bite long term and can be uncomfortable to wear. At Manoa Dental, our appliance is custom design to your correct airway position and TMJ alignment. We based our design on Cat Scan Technology, not on a guessing position.  Dr. Keri Do is the authority on the relationship between the jaw (TMJ), the bite, and the airway/sleep apnea. She has publications and teaches a course to dentists around the nation on sleep apnea and jaw relationships. 



 *No Machines

  *No Surgeries

         *Open the Airway                   Naturally

     To find out how we can help you, 

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