Dental Tips Blog

Dec
27

Oral Signs of Sleep Apnea

Posted in Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea can make you feel fatigued all day, impact your blood pressure, and cause a number of other health conditions. But did you know that it could also impact your smile? In fact, many people may not realize that they even have sleep apnea until their dentist notices the symptoms.

Here are a few things to have your dentist check for:

Worn, Flat Teeth

As you sleep, your body will be fighting to open the airway in order to improve oxygen flow. Studies have shown that sleep apnea patients often grind and clench their teeth together forcefully when oxygen levels are low. 

Dry Mouth / Sore Throat

Breathing (or trying to breathe) through your mouth will dry out your mucosal tissues. Mouth breathing generally makes your mouth feel very dry when you wake up. It can even contribute to bad breath. For the same reason, people with sleep apnea may also get sore throats regularly.

Periodontitis

Dry mouth and poor circulation can make your smile more susceptible to gum disease. If you already have good oral hygiene and are experiencing unexpected gum health problems, it could be that you are not sleeping well enough at night.

TMJ Problems

Forcefully moving your jaw open or closed as you sleep (due to an attempt gain oxygen) could make the muscles around the TMJ feel fatigued. The stress of the condition causes muscle tension, creating pain or even headaches that radiate from the TMJ into the face.

If your dentist spots any of these problems or you are experiencing oral symptoms of sleep apnea – ask if an oral sleep apnea appliance can help!

Posted on behalf of:
Gwinnett Family Dental Care
3455 Lawrenceville Hwy
Lawrenceville, GA 30044
(770) 921-1115

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