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  • Dr. Bryant Anderson

Sleep Apnea Treatments with NightLase®

When was the last time you woke up feeling refreshed? Do you share a bedroom with someone who’s constantly complaining about your snoring? Do you often wake up with a stiff or fatigued jaw or a headache?


You may be suffering with airway issues during sleep. 


Sleep apnea and snoring can disturb your sleep and your loved ones, too. It’s always a good idea to talk to your physician about getting a sleep study. 


But don’t forget to talk to your team at Anderson Family Dental, too! We’re proud to offer snoring and sleep apnea treatments in Winter Park, FL.


A man snoring with wife covering her ears with pillow

WHAT IS SLEEP APNEA?

Sleep apnea is interrupted breathing during sleep. 


There are three main types of sleep apnea. Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is the most common and easiest to treat. 


Obstructive sleep apnea happens when the muscles around your airway relax and your soft palate, upper throat, or tongue block air going into the lungs. 


Other types of sleep apnea involve the brain failing to send the right signals to the muscles that control breathing and takes special treatments.


WARNING SIGNS OF SLEEP APNEA

  • Loud snoring

  • Sleep study, sleep partner, or family member observing episodes where you stop breathing during sleep.

  • Waking up with headaches in the morning.

  • Difficulty staying asleep.

  • Gasping for air during sleep.

  • Feeling excessively sleepy during the day.

  • Difficulty paying attention during the day.

  • Feeling irritable regularly.

  • Waking up with a dry mouth.


HOW SLEEP APNEA AFFECTS YOUR TEETH

Sleep apnea can also be associated with tooth grinding and clenching, so you may also wake up with symptoms related to your jaw. For example, sore, stiff, or tired jaw muscles, sore or sensitive teeth, stuffy or painful ears, and stiff neck.


Why would breathing problems make you grind your teeth?


Many of the muscles involved in keeping your airway open are connected to your lower jaw. So moving the jaw can sometimes help open the airway.


In fact, at our Winter Park office we can make appliances that move the jaw forward to help keep the airway open and relieve some symptoms of sleep apnea, such as snoring.


HOW DO I SNORE?

Speaking of snoring, how can your soft palate and jaw position lead to noisy sleep?


As the tissues of the throat and soft palate relax and soften, they close together, creating resistance against air flowing into the lungs.


As the diaphragm pulls harder to get enough air into the lungs, the air moving through the constricted airway causes the tissues to vibrate, creating a percussive noise.


In many people, snoring becomes a sort of feedback loop that increases in intensity over several breaths, sometimes ending in a short period of held breath followed by gasping or shifting as the body tries to recover from lack of oxygen.


HOW CAN SNORING & SLEEP APNEA AFFECT YOUR HEALTH?

Snoring and sleep apnea can lead to very serious long-term health problems, including:

  • Increased risk for heart attack, stroke, and irregular heartbeat.

  • High blood pressure.

  • Type 2 diabetes.

  • Metabolic syndrome.

  • Increased risk for complications during surgery or other medical care.

  • Liver problems.

  • Strain on relationships in the household.

  • Mental health problems and increased risk for depression.

  • Increased risk for behavioral problems and learning disorders in children.


So while many of us joke about snoring, it’s a symptom that should be taken seriously and treated as soon as possible to prevent potentially serious problems for your health.


HOW CAN MY DENTIST MAKE ME SLEEP BETTER & STOP SNORING?

If you think you have sleep apnea, it’s important to talk to your physician about getting a sleep study done and possibly getting treatment such as a CPAP.


However, there are additional options that can help!


Our Winter Park dentists, Drs. Bryant and Kathleen Anderson, have advanced training in recognizing and treating snoring and sleep apnea. Our treatment options make great additions to help your CPAP work better, or as an alternative for patients who cannot tolerate a CPAP, or who need immediate help while waiting for a sleep study or other interventions.


WHAT IS NIGHTLASE®

In addition to creating oral appliances that can help keep your airway open, we offer an advanced laser treatment that can significantly tighten the soft palate and tissues of the throat, helping to keep the airway open while you sleep.


NightLase® is a non-invasive, non-surgical laser treatment that reduces sleep apnea effects.

The specialized laser gently stimulates collagen in the skin of the throat to contract, pulling the soft palate and throat tissue away from the airway and increasing airflow overnight.


With years of peer-reviewed clinical research and FDA approval, this therapy can safely improve your sleep and decrease the effects of sleep apnea.


WHAT IS THE PROCESS LIKE?

NightLase® treatment doesn’t involve anesthesia, painful treatments, or uncomfortable recovery.

Treatment only takes about 20 minutes.


You’ll relax comfortably while we sweep the laser over the tissues at the back of your throat. Most patients report a warm sensation while the laser is working.


A full course of NightLase® includes three sessions performed over a six-week period. However, most patients notice a difference after the first visit!


Clinical research has show a significant reduction in snoring and airway issues, and your final results can last up to two years, after which the treatment can be repeated.


HOW NIGHTLASE® HELPS

After your NightLase® treatment, the collagen in the treated tissues will contract, tightening and shrinking the soft palate and upper throat area.


This firmer tissue will stay clear of the airway even as the muscles relax during deep sleep. 


That means no vibrating soft palate keeping your family awake at night, no more waking up gasping for air, and hopefully improved moods and better sleep for everyone in the house!


READY TO START SLEEPING BETTER?

If you’re thinking about scheduling a snoring or sleep apnea consultation in Winter Park, FL, there’s no better time than now. 


The effects of disrupted sleep can affect every aspect of your mood, work, and social life. You don’t have to suffer with sleep problems!


With NightLase®, you can enjoy more energy, better mornings, and less getting elbowed in the ribs by your partner at night.


Call us today, or book an appointment online, to schedule your consultation for snoring or sleep apnea laser treatment at our Winter Park dental office.



 

Dr. Bryant Anderson, DMD

Dr. Anderson also completed a Mastery program in Dental Sleep Medicine where he gained invaluable knowledge in the treatment of snoring and sleep apnea. He maintains membership in many dental organizations and has received his fellowship in the International Congress of Oral Implantology and his fellowship in the Academy of General Dentistry.  READ MORE

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