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Sleep Apnea Hurts…the Cure Doesn’t Have To!   

You want to be and feel your best…sure, who doesn’t? You exercise, go to bed at a decent time, and eat body-boosting food, yet you feel exhausted throughout the day. Are you tired of being tired? Do you find yourself waking up numerous times during the night, often sweating and out of breath? Does your bed partner complain that you constantly snore?  If so, you might be suffering from sleep apnea, a SERIOUS sleep disorder that affects over 20 million Americans each night.

If you are missing sleep, you might be missing oxygen as well. That is bad news!  Left untreated, sleep apnea can lead to both short and long term health problems, such as heart disease, stroke, and depression. Dr. David Vaca and Dr. Chris Kirby can help you get the treatment you need right in Longview, TX. If any of the symptoms above sound familiar, be sure to contact us today.  We’re also able to serve patients from the Marshall, Kilgore, and other East Texas communities.

Person sleeping on couch with blanket over head

What is Sleep Apnea?

Apnea…it’s a funny word, but absolutely nothing to laugh at! It literally means “without breath.”

Sleep apnea is a common disorder that causes interruptions in breathing during sleep, preventing oxygen from reaching the brain. Sufferers wake hundreds of times per night each time their breathing is interrupted and the brain is depleted of oxygen. It’s a potentially fatal condition that affects more than 1 in 3 men and 1 in 6 women. It is not a disease, but it seriously increases the risk of contracting other diseases and conditions.

Man sleeping at desk with coffee cup

Who Gets Obstructive Sleep Apnea?

Sleep apnea does not discriminate, regardless of age, gender, or body type. It can be hereditary, meaning even young children can have sleep apnea. Because it can be passed down in the genes, it is a good idea for everyone to have a sleep study.

What Causes Sleep Apnea?

There are three main types of sleep apnea with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) being the most common. More than 80% of sleep apnea patients have OSA.  Snoring, which is the most common sign of sleep apnea, occurs when the soft tissue in the back of the throat falls down into the airway. When air tries to pass that tissue, you get a fluttering noise, and this is what creates the iconic snoring sound. Not only is it wreaking havoc on the person that snores, but it also affects their bed partner as well.

Eventually, your brain senses that you’ve stopped breathing and causes you to wake up just enough to gasp and start breathing again. Then, you fall back to sleep and the cycle begins again. This can happen more than 120 times every hour, even though you may not ever remember waking up.

Sleep Apnea has been linked to:

  • Hypertension
  • Heart attack
  • Depression
  • High blood pressure
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Severe Anxiety
  • Inefficient metabolism
  • Insomnia
  • Weight gain
  • Mood Swings
  • Stroke
  • Cardiac arrhythmia
  • Loss of short-term memory
  • Muscle pain
  • Gastric reflux
  • Diabetes
  • Intellectual deterioration
  • Impotence
  • Memory and concentration impairment

To have a better understanding of sleep apnea, take a coffee stir straw and try to breath out of it while plugging your nose. The straw represents how much air passes through the airway while sleeping. When your body doesn’t receive enough air, you will awaken just enough to breathe.

Sleep apnea causes a person to miss out on essential, deep REM sleep, and this causes stress to the body and organs, as well as daytime drowsiness. This consistent exhaustion is why people with sleep apnea are also more likely to be involved in serious car accidents.

Hand with WatchPat device for home sleep study

RISKING YOUR SLEEP = RISKING YOUR LIFE! YOU ARE A DANGER TO YOURSELF AND TO OTHERS

Heard enough?  Don’t let another day go by without knowing if you suffer from sleep apnea. Believe it or not, you don’t have to go to a sleep specialist for help.  You can rest easy with sleep apnea therapy provided by Vaca and Kirby Dental in Longview, Texas.  Both Dr. Vaca and Dr. Kirby are members of the American Sleep and Breathing Academy. They are part of an elite group of dentists who have demonstrated the highest level of knowledge and experience in the treatment of obstructive sleep apnea using oral appliance therapy.

Following a simple at home sleep study using the WatchPat device, a board-certified pulmonologist will analyze the study and send the results to our highly-trained dentists. After a comprehensive evaluation of your results by Dr. Vaca or Dr. Kirby, they can then determine which treatment option will work best for you. 

We treat snoring and sleep apnea with a custom device that fits comfortably in your mouth, advancing your jaw forward slightly in order to keep your airway open. This stops the fluttering and thus the snoring. Based on your needs, we offer several different appliances, including SomnoMed, Narval, Herbst, and Micr02. What better professional to place an oral appliance than your dentist? They have decades of experience working inside the mouth!

Variety of customized sleep apnea appliances

Medical Insurance Coverage

Most of the time, medical insurance will cover the treatment of obstructive sleep apnea using an oral appliance. Insurance plans vary greatly, but our Insurance Specialist will assist you by contacting your provider to answer any questions about your benefits. Sleep apnea is considered a medical condition and will not be covered by dental insurance. Full disclosure regarding coverage will be provided prior to treatment. 

Man sleeping with CPAP system

Sick of Your CPAP?:

CPAP therapy is still considered the most effective treatment for those suffering from severe sleep apnea. If you refuse to wear your CPAP due to the discomfort, portability issues, or noise, then a custom fitted oral appliance could be your answer. Cessation from your CPAP will only be considered under the direction of your sleep physician. 

Don’t Wait…Answer this short quiz to see if you suffer from some form of OSA. .

Stop Bang Form Epworth Study Sleep History/Exam/Work Up

Smiling man stretching awake in the morning

Wake up and take snoring seriously! Take the first step and explore a new sleep apnea solution with one of our doctors at Vaca & Kirby Dental in Longview, Texas, and begin your journey to a better night’s sleep today.

Call today for a Free Consultation

Have Questions? Get Answers.