Almost 20 million Americans are losing sleep due to the common sleep disorder, obstructive sleep apnea. Even more alarming, many people are not receiving the care they need to address this serious condition. Obstructive sleep apnea can present several challenges, the first being diagnosis. Dr. Milligan is an experienced Bloomington, IL dentist with the screening tools to identify obstructive sleep apnea so that proper treatment may begin.

It is not necessarily difficult to diagnose obstructive sleep apnea. The problem with this initial step lies mostly in the fact that people with this disorder often think they snore, and that is all. There is a significant difference between snoring and sleep apnea, however. A person who snores is still moving air, albeit with a bit of difficulty. A person who experiences an apneic event stops breathing for 10 or more seconds. Even short pauses can lead to serious problems because they may occur hundreds of times in a night.

Treatment for obstructive sleep apnea has evolved over the years. Standard medical treatment continues to be the use of a CPAP machine to force air into the airway while the patient sleeps. Although this form of treatment achieves the desired effect of keeping the airway open, CPAP tends to have low compliance due to unpleasant side effects of forced air.

Your dentist has an alternative to CPAP, one that has been proven to achieve results without the side effects. By creating customized oral appliances, Dr. Milligan has helped many people regain their ability to sleep soundly.

Oral appliances for obstructive sleep apnea may:

  • Improve muscle tone in the tongue
  • Increase stability in the lower jaw and tongue
  • Place the uvula, the tongue, the lower jaw, and the soft palate into proper positioning

It is possible to find over the counter devices designed to alleviate the symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea. However, these devices are not tailored to the specific oral structure of each individual and, therefore, are not capable of achieving optimal results. Dr. Milligan designs oral appliances based on the specific needs of each patient, in consideration of their natural structure.

Eastland Dental Center can help accurately determine if your lack of sleep is due to obstructive sleep apnea. Dr. Milligan has the extensive experience to help you put a stop to your sleep disorder comfortably and safely. Contact our office for more information on sleep apnea treatment.

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