Sleep Apnea

Sasha Bhor, DDS -  - Family and Cosmetic Dentist

Oasis Smiles

Sasha Bhor, DDS

Family and Cosmetic Dentist located in Rancho Bernardo, San Diego, CA

Do you snore loudly and wake up feeling tired, despite a full night’s sleep? Then you could have sleep apnea, a severe sleeping disorder impacting millions of adults. At Oasis Smiles in beautiful San Diego Dr. Sasha Bhor can counsel you on safe, effective non-surgical and surgical procedures that can eliminate this life-threatening disorder.

Sleep Apnea Q & A

by Sasha Bhor, DDS

What is sleep apnea?

Sleep apnea occurs when biomechanical or neurological issues disrupt your regular breathing patterns. If left untreated, it can produce dangerous complications like stroke, heart attack, high blood pressure, and diabetes.

What causes sleep apnea?

There are three major types of sleep apnea:

  • Obstructive: Caused when soft tissues at the back of your throat collapse and block air flow.
  • Central: A neurological issue where the brain doesn’t signal the muscles that regulate breathing
  • Complex: A syndrome that combines obstructive and central sleep apnea

What are the symptoms of sleep apnea?

Although loud snoring is often a symptom, not all people who snore have sleep apnea. However, if one or more of these symptoms accompany your snoring, you should be evaluated as soon as possible:

  • Awakening with shortness of breath
  • Experiencing dry mouth, sore throat, or headaches in the morning
  • Feeling sleepy and irritable during the day
  • Insomnia
  • Short attention span

How is sleep apnea diagnosed and treated?

After performing an exam, Dr. Bhor might recommend further testing at a sleep disorder center.

During an overnight stay, a sleep specialist monitors your blood oxygen levels, brain activity, breathing patterns, and the performance of your heart and lungs.

If central sleep apnea is the issue, Dr. Bhor will refer you to a neurologist for more testing and evaluation. If you have obstructive sleep apnea, she has several non-surgical therapies available:

  • Wearable air-pressure devices keep your upper air passages open while you sleep.
  • Oral appliances shift the position of your jaw, preventing soft throat tissues from blocking air

If those approaches don’t resolve the problem, there are several surgical alternatives.

Soft Tissue Removal  

This surgery extracts the vibrating throat structures that cause snoring and block airflow. Known medically as uvulopalatopharyngoplasty, it requires hospitalization and general anesthesia.

Jaw Realignment  

By surgically moving the jaw forward, this procedure increases the space between your tongue and soft palate, making breathing easier during sleep.

Alternative Air Passage  

If all other surgical options fail, a surgeon can implant a plastic tube in your throat, creating a new air passage. It's reserved for the most severe cases of sleep apnea.

If snoring, sleep loss, and other symptoms are impacting your life, schedule an evaluation at Oasis Smiles today. Deeply experienced in treating patients with sleep apnea, Dr. Bhor can recommend strategies for identifying and treating this life-threatening disorder.