Month: October 2016

Sleep Deprivation Weston Sleep Disorder Dentist Explains the Risks

Weston Sleep Specialist Explains the Risks of Snoring and Sleep Deprivation

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Stephen J. Pyle DDS, a Weston dentist and expert on sleep apnea wants the community to understand that persistent heavy snoring is not just an annoyance but could be a sign of a serious medical condition. If you or your partner routinely snore loudly or wake up gasping for air you may be suffering from sleep apnea.

Obstructive sleep apnea occurs when the soft tissue in the back of your throat collapses blocking your airway. Obviously when the airway is blocked oxygen is not getting to your brain, heart or other organs and muscles that thrive on oxygen. This oxygen deprivation can lead to stroke, heart attack, diabetes and an array of other serious medical conditions.

Just as dangerous as the actual oxygen deprivation is the fatigue and drowsiness that the condition can leave you with. If you are spending your night constantly interrupting your sleep due to sleep apnea you are opening yourself up other, everyday hazards that go with drowsiness.

5 Dangerous Effects of Sleep Deprivation

  1. You wouldn’t drive drunk. You know the hazards of operating a vehicle while impaired by alcohol or drugs. But did you know that driving drowsy has essentially the same effect on your reaction time as driving buzzed? According to a National Geographic documentary driving fatigued is the top cause of high-severity crashes.
  2. Studies show that women are more likely to suffer serious effects from sleep deprivation than men. Fatigue is linked to greater psychological distress and that distress appears to be more severe in females placing them at a higher risk for sleep related disease.
  3. Sleep deprivation puts you at a disadvantage when it comes to developing mental disorders such as depression. Sleep deprivation doesn’t cause depression but makes the person more susceptible to developing it than a person with a healthy, regular sleep pattern.
  4. A full night’s sleep “flushes” your brain. That sounds pretty strange but in 2013 the NIH found that a good night’s sleep does in fact flush toxins that develop during waking hours that result in a “dirty brain” if not adequately flushed at night.
  5. Finally the National Transportation Safety Board says that losing sleep degrades or impairs decision-making, reaction time, situational awareness, memory, communication to the tune of 20% to 50%.

The good news is if your poor sleep habits are caused by sleep apnea the condition can be easily treated and you can end the everyday fatigue. While Dr. Pyle cannot offer a diagnosis, as a dentist he is often the first medical professional to see the conditions that lead to sleep apnea and refers many patients to sleep disorder MDs. He works closely with those doctors to treat patients with a simple dental appliance that resembles a sports guard worn at night.

If you believe you suffer from sleep apnea, call our Weston dental office today for an exam to scan for the condition!

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Weston Dental Office Offers Tips on How to Choose a Sports Guard

Our Weston Dental Office Offers These Tips on How to Choose a Sports Guard

Fall means back-to-school which for a lot of kids means back-to-sports. When it comes to sports guards contact sports like football, hockey, basketball and soccer are the ones you may think of first but your mouth and teeth are still at risk with non-contact activities like skate boarding, roller skating and horseback riding. A properly fitted sports guard is the first line of defense for both teeth and gums if your mouth is ever struck. It is essential to a sports guards’ effectiveness that they are professionally fitted. Sports guard can protect against teeth being misaligned, chipped, pulled out or forced down into the gum, wherever there is a possibility of a fall there is a possibility of damaging your mouth.

3 Types of Sports Guards

A sports guard should fit your mouth, not interfere with breathing and not interfere with speaking. Here are three types of guards available:

  1. Boil and Bite. These guards are boiled in water to make the material malleable.  The user then bites down on the guard to give it some measure of customization.  These guards are also widely available at sporting goods stores and department stores. They offer better fit and protection than stock guards but can impair breathing. They also have a shorter service life than a stock guard.
  2. Stock sports guards. These are the least expensive of the guards and are widely available. They have curved troughs made of plastic and are commonly found attached to “starter” football helmets for kids. They come in small, medium and large and offer no customization. They often don’t fit well and can obstruct breathing and fall out when the mouth is opened.
  3. Custom Fit. These guards are fabricated by your dentist from a full mouth impression. Custom fit guards offer the greatest protection to teeth and jaw, are without question the most comfortable to wear, can accommodate braces and do not interfere with breathing or speaking. They are also the most durable of the three classes of guards.

At our Weston dental practice we offer a full line of family dental services including custom sports guards for kids and adults. If you or your children can use a sports guard to better protect your mouth give us a call today and set up an appointment.