Patients with obstructive sleep apnea and their partners can enjoy relief with a custom-fitted dental appliance. Dr. Stephen G. Alfano, of Balboa Island Dentistry, in Newport Beach, California, has been designed such dental appliances for countless Orange County patients who suffer from sleep apnea.
Sleep apnea is a sleeping disorder that causes brief periods of interruption in breathing while sleeping. The person's breathing may stop for 10 seconds or longer each time the sleep apnea occurs.
Because the person's body isn't receiving enough oxygen, sleep apnea puts a strain on the heart. The patient's brain may not receive an adequate amount of oxygen, which can lead to problems such as confusion. Patients with sleep apnea will not sleep optimally and often feel tired after a full night's rest. Patients may feel irritable the following day due to a restless sleep that they experienced throughout the night.
Two types of sleep apnea exist: obstructive sleep apnea and central sleep apnea. Central sleep apnea occurs in the brain, whereas obstructive sleep apnea is the more common form that's caused by the relaxation of the soft tissue in the back of the mouth.
A variety of approaches can be used, depending on the severity of the case. In mild to moderate cases of obstructive sleep apnea, a dentist can provide a customized oral appliance that keeps the mouth slightly opened during sleep. Other options include a CPAP or BiPAP to assist a patient with breathing. The doctor might also prescribe medications such as sedatives or muscle relaxants to encourage restful sleep.
The dentist has the ability to fabricate a dental device that looks much like a mouth guard. It prevents the obstruction that a person experiences as a result of the sleep apnea. The dentist has the ability to fabricate it and fit the patient for the device. The dental equipment holds the tongue in place so that it doesn't block airways. The device supports the jaw in order to prevent the airways from becoming obstructed. Patients should keep in mind that only a dentist can successfully treat obstructive sleep apnea with an oral appliance.
Dr. Alfano has been fabricating oral appliances to treat sleep apnea for over 15 years. He works with board certified sleep physicians to ensure the appliance is helping the patient as intended.
"Dr. Alfano is a wonderful dentist & a very caring person as well. If you are looking for consistency & friendliness in staff, Balboa Island Dentistry is the place to go"
"Dr. Alfano...did a wonderful job with my problem tooth. I cannot say enough about his “chair side” mannerand his familiarity with my situation."
"Very happy with Dr. Alfano. He has a way with injections to make them not hurt! Very professional yet very friendly office."
“Very satisfied. Entire staff is professional & friendly.”
“Dr. Alfano is really really good! Had crowns replaced. The doctor was great ! No pain in administering the shot. I am happy with him.”
"The exceptional care combined with the staff’s focus on their patients’ needs and comfort have earned my respect and kudos!”
“The staff was very informative. Everyone in the office is always helpful and informed”
“The office staff is all so nice and helpful, always! I never have to wait for my appointment, always very prompt.”
"Dr. Alfano makes visits to the dentist (almost) a pleasure. I hope he's in practice for as long as I need a dentist."
"Love all the wonderful friends that greet me at the office. Not like any other office."
"Without a doubt the best care my teeth & gums have ever had!"
"Dr. Alfano seems to be a great successor to Dr. Ballback and all of the exceptional staff is still there."
"A special thank you to Dr. Alfano for the fabulous dental work. We would highly recommend him to anyone needing dental care."
"This dentist is as good as it gets."
Dr. Alfano's staff is top rate. He does a great job for his patients.