Treating Sleep Disorders for Better Health
Insomnia, sleep apnea, snoring and other sleep-related disorders affect more than your sleep at night. If left untreated, sleep disorders might increase a person’s chance of incurring other medical problems, such as high blood pressure, heart attacks, heart failure, stroke or diabetes. Sleep disorders are also frustrating, as they leave a person feeling tired and functioning poorly. We can help you return to a pattern of restful, restorative sleep. Additionally, our physicians are either Sleep Fellowship trained and/or board certified in Sleep Medicine.
Sleep disorders commonly treated include:
Treatment for sleep-related breathing disorders:
Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) machines are the most common treatment for sleep-related breathing disorders. After a sleep study, you will be fitted for a PAP device to keep your airway open and ensure consistent, non-labored breathing during sleep.
Other treatment options include wearing an oral appliance. This is a device made especially for you by your dentist or a dentist specializing in sleep medicine. An impression of your upper and lower teeth are made and the device is worn much like a mouth guard would be for bruxism (grinding of the teeth).
With oral appliances there are also education materials and exercises available to help you combat the initial jaw soreness that may accompany wearing the device overnight as you adjust.
Behavioral and Positional Therapy
Behavioral therapy begins with keeping a sleep diary for at least two weeks which includes the time you wake and go to sleep as well as any naps and what activities you do beforehand.
You’ll review your diary with your sleep doctor or trained sleep specialist and together you will make a plan working towards adjustments that will gradually increase your quality of sleep.
Positional therapy may be recommended if your sleep-related breathing is only problematic on one side and virtually non-existent in others. In such cases special shirts or devices can be worn to prevent you from turning or sleeping on that side. This can also be considered if PAP devices will not be tolerated.
For other sleep related issues like chronic insomnia, excessive daytime sleepiness or restless leg syndrome, medication may be necessary. Once diagnosed, your doctor will review your treatment options with you.