Sleep Apnea Treatment
Beth Caunitz, DDS provides sleep apnea treatment in Midtown East NYC.
Call 212-206-9002 today to learn more and schedule your appointment.
About Sleep Apnea
Obstructive sleep apnea is an ongoing condition that disrupts sleep. When breathing is paused or becomes shallow, one will often move out of deep sleep and into light sleep, making the quality of sleep poor.
Sleep apnea can be treated with lifestyle changes, mouthpieces, breathing devices, and/or surgery. Oral Appliance Therapy (OAT) is often an effective alternative to CPAP for patients suffering from obstructive sleep apnea. Many patients suffering from sleep apnea can find relief using a custom removable Oral Appliance Therapy appliance, which adjusts the position of the lower jaw and tongue to minimize airway obstruction.
For moderate to severe sleep apnea, a breathing device called CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) or surgery to widen the breathing passages by shrinking, stiffening, or removing excess tissue in the mouth and throat or resetting the lower jaw may be helpful. A CPAP machine uses a mask that fits over your mouth and/or nose and gently blows air into your throat. This air pressure helps keep your airway open while you sleep. Surgery to shrink the tissue involves a small shot into the breathing passages. Surgery to stiffen excess tissue requires a small incision in the tissue and inserting a piece of stiff plastic.
Call 212-206-9002 to schedule your appointment.
Sleep Wellness, Home Testing and Oral Appliances
An important part of overall health, sleep wellness can have a far-reaching impact on your well-being and quality of life. Dental sleep medicine focuses on the use of oral appliance therapy to treat sleep-disordered breathing, including snoring and obstructive sleep apnea (OSA).
Using the BlueSleep™ Dental Program, Dr. Caunitz and Board Certified Sleep specialists work together to diagnose and treat patients with OSA and other breathing disorders.
Dr. Caunitz will be able to monitor a patient’s sleep patterns using a specialized home testing device that can monitor your breathing and any possible respiratory events while sleeping.
What to Expect During a Home Sleep Test:
- You will pick up the home sleep test from our office and we will review the instructions with you.
- Following the instructions provided, you will wear the easy to use testing device while you sleep that evening.
- You will return the sleep monitor to our office the following day, where we will download the assessment information for evaluation.
- We will then schedule a teleconference with a Board certified Sleep Specialist and the patient. This video conference (very similar to using Skype® or FaceTime® ) is very easy and can be done from the patient’s home or from our office if you prefer.
- During the teleconference, the Sleep Specialist will review the results and provide you with a diagnosis and treatment plan for any sleep issues that may have been identified.
Learn More about BlueSleep™
Oral Appliance Therapy
Dr. Caunitz offers customized oral appliance therapy to treat snoring and sometimes for the more serious condition known as sleep apnea. If it is decided that an oral appliance would help improve your sleep wellness, we can create an oral appliance, much like a small sports mouth guard, that fits snugly over your upper and lower teeth. It is a precision-made, custom fit, and clinically tested device that will improve sleep quality, increase daytime energy and improve mental and physical performance. Our sleep appliances are comfortable, effective and a great value that will allow you to have more restful nights and more productive days!
Sleep Apnea Frequently Asked Questions
And here are answers to some frequently asked questions about sleep apnea:
What is sleep apnea?
There are two basic types of sleep apnea: obstructive sleep apnea and central sleep apnea. Obstructive sleep apnea is a sleep-related disorder in which a person’s breathing is briefly and repeatedly interrupted during sleep. This happens when the muscles in the back of the throat do not keep the airway open, despite efforts to breathe. Central sleep apnea is also a sleep-related disorder in which a person’s breathing repeatedly stops and starts during sleep. This type of sleep apnea occurs because the brain fails to send proper signals to the muscles that control breathing during sleep. Obstructive sleep apnea is far more common than central sleep apnea.
Is sleep apnea dangerous?
Untreated obstructive sleep apnea can be a very serious condition. A person with obstructive sleep apnea has disturbed sleep in which they repeatedly stop and start breathing. This may lead to high blood pressure, congestive heart failure, cardiac arrhythmia, stroke or depression and mood and memory problems. It can also lead to drowsy driving which raises the risk of car accidents.
How do I know if I have sleep apnea?
There are numerous symptoms of sleep apnea, including: chronic snoring, excessive daytime drowsiness, difficulty concentrating, depression, irritability or falling asleep while working, on the phone or driving. However, the most accurate tool to properly diagnose sleep apnea and its severity is a sleep study that measure how well you sleep. Fortunately, rather than spend a night in a sleep laboratory, you can do a home sleep test in the comfort of your own home.
Will I have to use a CPAP machine or have surgery to treat sleep apnea?
Not necessarily. Until recently, positive airway pressure machines, such as CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure), BiPAP (bilevel positive airway pressure), VPAP (variable positive airway pressure), have been the most commonly used treatment for moderate and severe sleep apnea. These machines work with breathing masks worn over the nose (or sometimes the nose and mouth) during sleep, to provide pressurized air flowing continuously or intermittently into the sleeper’s throat and prevent the sleeper’s airway from collapsing. Another form of treatment is surgery. While effective in treating snoring, surgery is less effective in treating obstructive sleep apnea.
Oral appliance therapy is an increasingly popular and effective first line treatment for patients with mild to moderate obstructive sleep apnea and as an alternative for people with severe obstructive sleep apnea who cannot tolerate or wear positive airway pressure machines.
What are the advantages of Oral appliance therapy for obstructive sleep apnea?
Oral appliance therapy is an effective, non-invasive treatment that is easy for patients to use. Oral appliances are comfortable, easy to wear, quiet, portable and easy to take care of.
Do I need to see a dentist to get an oral appliance for obstructive sleep apnea?
There are a number of self-fitting over-the-counter oral appliances on the market. If not fitted properly, such over-the-counter appliances may not fully treat obstructive sleep apnea and can cause unwanted side effects, such as jaw problems, tooth movement, discomfort or pain. Custom made oral appliances are designed to fit your teeth, mouth and temporomandibular joint, ensuring effectiveness, safety and comfort.
Call 212-206-9002 to schedule your appointment.