Should You Try A Sleep Appliance?

Snoring could mean obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), a serious disorder that could lead to poor overall health and even issues for your immune system and cardiovascular health. In order to treat OSA and snoring, your El Paso, TX, dentists may suggest a custom-made sleep appliance, which provides an alternative to the more common CPAP machine.

The Causes of Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea occurs when we literally stop breathing as we sleep. This happens when the soft tissues in the throat and in the rear of the mouth become too relaxed and actually collapse, cutting off airflow. We stop breathing briefly until the brain wakes us resume. For most, there is no memory of being woken up, but this happens hundreds of times a night and prevents you from obtaining the deep, uninterrupted sleep needed to feel rested the next day. Factors behind the disorder vary, but have been linked to age (typically 55 and older), obesity, large neck circumference, deviated septum, sinus and allergy issues, and sleeping on your back instead of your side. Excess alcohol consumption before bed could also lead to apneic episodes.

When to Seek Treatment

When you begin to experience the common warning signs of the disorder, you should see our team right away. Indicators of OSA include snoring, headaches and migraines, daytime exhaustion, moodiness, difficulty focusing on tasks at work or school or waking suddenly in the night gasping for air or choking. If you don’t seek treatment, over time this could strain your immune system, leading to more frequent sickness. You could also strain your cardiovascular system, increasing your overall risk of heart disease, hypertension, heart attack, and stroke.

A CPAP Alternative

While effective, some patients prefer an alternative to the CPAP device. We take impressions and measurements of your smile to create an oral appliance that you wear as you rest. The sleep appliance actually repositions the jaw to ensure continuous and uninterrupted breathing during the night. You then avoid apneic episodes without wearing a mask connected to machine that provides airflow, which is what a CPAP device does. If you have any questions about treating your sleep troubles, or if you already use a CPAP machine and would like to try an oral appliance instead, then let us know right away. We may be able to start treatment now to ensure you begin to feel more rested by the holidays, and start 2020 feeling more alert and like yourself!


At Sunny Smiles in El Paso, TX, we use custom oral appliances and other options to help ensure better breathing at night and reduced snoring. Addressing these concerns can offer a better quality of life! If you have questions about treating OSA, then you can contact our N. Zaragoza dental practice by calling 915-849-9000.