SNORING AND SLEEP APNEA

Dr. Fujioka is Board Certified in Dental Sleep Medicine

Dr. Fujioka is one of the first three dentists in SW Washington to become a Diplomate of the American Board of Dental Sleep Medicine. Dentists who are board certified with the ABDSM have demonstrated that they have the skills and knowledge essential for the delivery of excellent patient care. The ABDSM believes higher standards for dental sleep medicine translate into better care for patients and greater accountability. The ABDSM credential is widely recognized as the gold standard for excellence in dental sleep medicine. The American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine is the leading national organization for dentists who use oral appliance therapy to manage sleep disordered breathing which includes snoring and sleep apnea.

Sleep Patient Forms:

What Is Sleep Apnea?

Sleep apnea is a serious, potentially life-threatening condition. It is far more common than previously thought. Sleep apnea happens in all age groups and in both genders. It is estimated that as many as 18 million Americans have sleep apnea and 90% of obstructive sleep apnea cases are undiagnosed. Sleep apnea is a breathing disorder characterized by brief interruptions of breathing during sleep.
The following are the most common symptoms of Obstructive Sleep Apnea:

  • Loud Snoring
  • Periodic Stoppages In Breathing
  • Gasping For Air During Sleep
  • Awakening With A Dry Mouth
  • Morning Headache
  • Irritability
  • Excessive Daytime Sleepiness
  • Personality Change
  • Poor Memory
  • Difficult Concentrating
  • Excessive Nighttime Urination

Early recognition and treatment of sleep apnea is important, as it may be associated with:

  • Daytime Fatigue.
  • High Blood Pressure Or Heart Problems.
  • Heart Attack
  • Stroke
  • Increased Risk Of Motor Vehicle Accidents

Dr. Fujioka has a high appreciation for the well being of her patients and knows that a good night’s sleep is vital to our daily good health. If you suspect that you may have sleep apnea, the first thing to do is see your doctor. Bring with you a record of your sleep, fatigue levels throughout the day, and any other symptoms you may be having. Ask your bed partner if he or she notices that you snore heavily, choke, gasp, or stop breathing during sleep.
One of the most common methods used to diagnose sleep apnea is a sleep study which may require an overnight stay at a sleep center. The sleep study monitors a variety of functions during sleep including sleep state, eye movement, muscle activity, heart rate, respiratory effort, airflow, and blood oxygen levels. This test is used both to diagnose sleep apnea and to determine its severity.

The treatment of choice for obstructive sleep apnea is a continuous airway pressure device (CPAP). CPAP is a mask that fits over the nose and/or mouth and gently blows air into the airway to help keep it open during sleep. This method of treatment is highly effective. Other methods of treating sleep apnea include: dental appliances that reposition the lower jaw and tongue; upper airway surgery to remove tissue in the airway; nasal expiratory positive airway pressure where a disposable valve covers the nostrils; and treatment using hypoglossal nerve stimulation where a stimulator is implanted into the patient’s chest with leads connected to the hypoglossal nerve that controls tongue movement as well as to a breathing sensor. The sensor monitors breathing patterns during sleep and stimulates the hypoglossal nerve to move the tongue to maintain an open airway.

View the AADSM website for more information. http://www.aadsm.org