Improve Your Health with Our Sleep Apnea Treatment in Estero, FL

Millions of people struggle with sleep apnea. In fact, one in four men and one in ten women experience daily struggles and restless nights. Although snoring loudly is one of its most common symptoms, this sleep disorder is also a leading factor in causing daytime fatigue, hypertension, stroke, and type 2 diabetes. While treatments can significantly improve symptoms and quality of life, they do not cure sleep apnea. If it feels like you have not had a good night’s sleep in a while, and it is starting to take a toll on your health, get in touch with Sleep Treatment Direct today. We help patients in Estero, FL, and surrounding areas identify and manage this condition without resorting to CPAP or extensive surgeries.

Insurance Approved!

Medicare Approved

We are the only office in Lee and Collier counties that provides oral appliance therapy, laser therapy, and other CPAP alternatives that takes medical insurance on assignment and are in network with Medicare.

What is Obstructive Sleep Apnea?

Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is a condition that disrupts sleep patterns without your knowledge. It creates a blockage in your throat (upper airway, to be more precise) so air cannot enter freely. When you are awake, your throat muscles keep the airway open effortlessly. But when you sleep or spend a lot of time lying down, these muscles tend to relax. This is not a problem for those who do not have sleep apnea. However, if you do have obstructive sleep apnea, your throat muscles loosen up too much, and the soft tissues, including your tongue, collapse back into the throat, a condition that many in Estero, FL are seeking to manage effectively.

Central sleep apnea is another type of sleep apnea, which is less common and often associated with other health conditions such as stroke, heart failure, or opioid drug use.

Insights on How to Treat Sleep Apnea for Uninterrupted Rest

This reduces or completely halts the flow of air, so your body cannot get the necessary oxygen it needs. As you unconsciously fight to breathe at night, your brain receives a distress signal to rouse you from your sleep to reopen the airway. This mini-wakeup call is so brief that you do not even remember it the next day. This entire process can repeat hundreds of times a night, breaking the natural rhythm of your sleep and causing difficulty sleeping.

Breathe Easy and Boost Your Day with Treatments for Sleep Apnea Near Estero, FL

The result is that your body fails to recharge, and you feel exhausted throughout the day without knowing why. If you do not receive sleep apnea treatment in Estero, FL, the lack of deep, restorative sleep builds up over time and increases your risk of heart disease and hypertension. Untreated sleep apnea can also contribute to other sleep disorders, further impacting overall health. It also compromises your cognitive functions; you are unable to focus, you feel unmotivated and lethargic, and your performance at work or school starts taking a hit.

 

Do You Have Obstructive Sleep Apnea?

If you have obstructive sleep apnea, you probably have a chronic snoring problem as well – however, not everyone with OSA snores, and not everyone who snores has OSA. In addition to snoring, you should also look out for other signs:

  • Gasping for air during sleep
  • Episodes of stopped breathing during sleep (your bed partner might have noticed this)
  • Excessive fatigue and brain fog when you are awake
  • High blood pressure
  • Morning headaches
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Memory problems
  • Decreased attention span
  • Mood swings (irritability, depression)
  • Heavy sweating in your sleep
  • Dry mouth and sore throat upon waking
  • Restless sleep
  • Insomnia
  • Frequent urination at night
  • Decreased libido

Symptoms can vary in severity, with mild sleep apnea causing less frequent disruptions and moderate sleep apnea causing more noticeable symptoms.

How is Sleep Apnea Diagnosed?

At Sleep Treatment Direct, we use your home sleep study results and a physical examination to determine whether your sleep-related problems are connected to sleep apnea. Our team helps you arrange an at-home sleep apnea test to record various body functions while you sleep, such as your breathing rate, heart rate, blood oxygen levels, and more. If you’re seeking sleep apnea treatment options in Estero, FL, our specialists can guide you through the available therapies after your diagnosis. This is a portable, easy-to-use wearable device that gives us insights into your:

  • Apneas are complete stops in breathing during sleep. If you have OSA, these stops happen because something is blocking your airway. By counting the number of times your breathing stops completely for at least 10 seconds, we can measure the severity of your apnea.
  • Hypopneas are partial reductions in breathing. They show up as shallow breaths or reduced airflow but not a complete stop. Hypopneas help us see how often your breathing is restricted, even if it does not stop completely.

We work with qualified sleep specialists in Estero, FL who use the Apnea-Hypopnea Index (AHI) to identify the presence of obstructive sleep apnea in our patients. AHI is the total number of apneas and hypopneas a person has per hour of sleep. The higher your AHI, the more severe your OSA might be. By analyzing these, we then determine whether you have OSA, how serious it is, and what the best sleep apnea treatments might be. The AHI numbers indicate:

  • Normal: Less than five episodes per hour
  • Mild OSA: 5-14 episodes per hour
  • Moderate OSA: 15-29 episodes per hour
  • Severe OSA: 30 or more episodes per hour

Positive airway pressure (CPAP) is a common and reliable treatment option for those diagnosed with obstructive sleep apnea.

Breathe Easier with Custom-Fitted Sleep Apnea Therapy Solutions in Estero, FL

Our approach to treating OSA heavily focuses on CPAP alternatives, offering sleep apnea treatment options in Estero, FL that cater to those who find CPAP machines noisy, uncomfortable, or claustrophobic. Despite what some believe, CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) machines are not the only treatment for obstructive sleep apnea, even though they are commonly prescribed. Many of our patients find CPAP machines impractical due to their frequent traveling lifestyle. Regardless of the reason, if you have not been able to adapt to CPAP or simply prefer trying less invasive options, we have got you covered.

Oral Appliance Therapy

Oral appliances are custom-fitted devices that you wear in your mouth while you sleep. They slightly advance your lower jaw or hold your tongue in a different position to keep your airway open. With continuous use, these devices increase the size of your upper airway, thus reducing the air resistance that leads to sleep apnea and snoring. Some devices also hold the tongue in place to prevent it from falling back and blocking the airway.

In terms of design, there are different types of dental appliances depending on the patient’s oral anatomy and the type of blockage they are experiencing. Mandibular advancement devices (MADs) are the most common; they look similar to mouthguards used in sports. MADs fit over the upper and lower dental arches and have metal hinges that allow the lower jaw to be eased forward, making them a viable sleep apnea treatment options for those in Estero, Florida.

The respiratory blockage is not as acute if you have mild or moderate OSA. So, the slight adjustment provided by the right oral appliance will noticeably reduce or eliminate your breathing interruptions. This is, by far, the simplest, most patient-friendly solution directly targeting obstructive sleep apnea’s root cause.

Unlock Better Sleep with Sleep Apnea Treatment Options in San Carlos Park, FL

The first step is to see if you are a strong candidate for oral appliance therapy. During your initial consultation in San Carlos Park, FL, we discuss your symptoms, medical history, and any previous treatments for sleep apnea you may have received. We also conduct a physical examination of your teeth, jaw, tongue, and airway to determine the best sleep apnea treatment options for you. Sometimes, a digital scan of your mouth may be done to better evaluate your oral structure.

If our dental sleep practitioners consider you a perfect fit, we will take impressions of your teeth and bite registration to capture the position of your jaw that best maintains an open airway. Once your appliance is ready (usually within a few weeks after the impressions are taken), you will have a fitting appointment, during which we will adjust the appliance to ensure it fits comfortably and correctly. You will be given instructions on:

  • How to insert and remove it
  • How to clean it to prevent odors and bacterial buildup, and
  • What to do if it feels uncomfortable

 

Overcoming Obstructive Sleep Apnea for Better Rest

Most of our patients need several follow-up visits to adjust the appliance and ensure it is as effective as possible. These adjustments are critical as they help refine the fit and improve the appliance’s function. Our dentists also check for signs of improvement in your symptoms and ensure no adverse effects on your teeth or jaw. You might be asked about your sleep quality, snoring, and any changes in daytime sleepiness. Regular check-ups every 6 to 12 months might be recommended even after the initial adjustment phase to keep the appliance functioning right.

You may feel some discomfort or unusual sensations, like increased saliva production or slight jaw soreness, but they improve as you get used to wearing the appliance. Most of our patients in San Carlos Park, FL notice a reduction in snoring within the first few nights of using the appliance, an improvement in sleep quality within the first week, and an increase in their daytime energy levels within the first two weeks, which is a testament to the effectiveness of our sleep apnea therapy.

Laser Therapy

We also offer laser therapy, a non-invasive treatment that targets snoring and other symptoms of sleep apnea by tightening the loose soft tissue in your throat. The procedure uses a gentle laser to heat the airway tissues. This reduces the “floppiness” of these tissues, which may prevent you from breathing properly while asleep. The laser heats these tissues in a controlled manner to stimulate the production of new collagen, offering a novel approach to treatments for sleep apnea in San Carlos Park, FL. This helps tighten the tissues, making the airway more open during sleep. The treatment is pain-free, but you might feel a warm sensation in your throat during the laser application. The treatment is done right here in our office, and you can return to your routine activities immediately.

What to Expect During Your Appointment

Just like oral appliance therapy, not every sleep apnea patient is an ideal candidate for laser treatments. Our first meeting involves a thorough evaluation of your throat and oral cavity to assess the structure of your airway and determine whether you are a suitable candidate. If we proceed with the sleep apnea therapy in San Carlos Park, Florida, you will probably be scheduled for at least three sessions spread over six weeks, although this will depend on the severity of your symptoms. Each session lasts about 30 minutes. You will sit in the treatment chair while our experienced team uses a handheld laser device to apply light energy to the tissues in your throat. There is no downtime after the session, and you can go back to work or school right away.

Additional sessions may be recommended depending on your response to the first 2-3 treatments to achieve the best results. We schedule a follow-up appointment after each treatment to check up on you and how you are responding to it. Maintenance sessions may be suggested annually or as needed to prolong the treatment benefits. You may experience a drastic change in your snoring intensity right after the first session of sleep apnea therapy in San Carlos Park, FL. However, the full benefits only become evident after completing all recommended treatments. As the tissues in your throat stiffen and your airway becomes more stable, you should experience fewer disruptions and better sleep quality.

Sleep Apnea Therapy Tailored for You in Estero, FL

Sleep Treatment Direct has a track record of helping OSA patients across Estero, Florida, find lasting relief from snoring and obstructive sleep apnea using a holistic approach. Our sleep apnea therapy options in Estero, FL, are tailored to meet the unique needs of each patient, ensuring effective management of their condition. These personalized treatment plans are designed to effectively treat obstructive sleep apnea and other forms of sleep apnea. If you’re tired of using CPAP or over-the-counter solutions that have failed to yield your desired results, look no further. We are in-network with all major health insurance providers, including Medicare. Fill out this free sleep apnea screener to get started.