Snoring & Sleep Apnoea
Many people will snore occasionally, but sleep apnoea is a potentially serious condition that interrupts breathing during sleep. This is caused by the throat muscles relaxing during sleep, allowing the airway to collapse inwards and obstructing breathing. Sufferers will often cease breathing for several seconds, before awakening with a loud gasp or snort. Episodes can occur hundreds of times each night, resulting in excessive daytime sleepiness. The long-term effects of untreated sleep apnoea can increase the risk of high blood pressure, heart disease, heart attacks and strokes.
Often we can successfully treat mild to moderate sleep apnoea with the use of a custom-made appliance. This is unobtrusive and comfortable to wear, and it works by gently holding the lower jaw forwards slightly, which helps to hold the airway open during sleep. The gold standard in treatment is a CPAP machine, but if you just can’t tolerate it, the mouth appliance might be very useful. We recommend that you get a sleep study done and your GP can organise a referral to a sleep clinic.