A man sleeping with a sleep apnea mask on.

Oral Surgery: Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea affects approximately 30 million Americans, but only one-fifth have received an official diagnosis. Consequently, many people with sleep apnea suffer from the symptoms, which include the following:

  • Daytime drowsiness
  • Decreased sex drive
  • Depression
  • Difficulty focusing
  • Dry mouth or sore throat when waking
  • Headaches when waking
  • Hypertension
  • Mood changes
  • Nighttime sleep disruptions with choking or gasping
  • Periods during sleep without breathing
  • Snoring

Recognizing your symptoms could indicate you have sleep apnea is the first step toward treatment that can alleviate those symptoms. Let’s look at what sleep apnea is, the types of sleep apnea, how sleep apnea surgery can help, and ways to afford effective sleep apnea treatments.

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What Is Sleep Apnea? 

Sleep apnea is a common sleep disorder. It involves disruptions in breathing during sleep. Without treatment, sleep apnea symptoms can make it challenging for you to make decisions. You may also struggle with behavioral changes, and your memory could also be affected. 

Causes Of Sleep Apnea

Common causes of sleep apnea include the following:

  • Alcohol use
  • Asthma
  • Congestive heart failure
  • Enlarged adenoids
  • Enlarged tonsils
  • Genetics
  • Hormonal changes
  • Nasal congestion
  • Polycystic ovary syndrome
  • Sedative use
  • Smoking
  • Thick neck
  • Tranquilizer use
  • Weight gain

Males and older adults also have a higher risk of developing sleep apnea.

What Are The Different Types Of Sleep Apnea? 

There are three types of sleep apnea. Each type disrupts your breathing while you sleep. 

Central Sleep Apnea (CSA) 

Brain signals cause central sleep apnea (CSA). Although breathing is often a subconscious behavior you do without thinking, the human brain has to send signals to the body to ensure you breathe. If you have CSA, your chest muscles and airway don’t receive those signals. 

Obstructive Sleep Apnea

Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) occurs when the throat muscles block the airway. It is the most common type of sleep apnea. 

Complex Sleep Apnea

Complex sleep apnea involves a transition from OSA to CSA. This transition occurs after treatment for OSA. 

 


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Sleep Apnea FAQs

Uvulopalatopharyngoplasty (UPPP) involves removing the uvula and excess tissue to prevent your airway from being blocked while asleep. UPPP is the most common obstructive sleep apnea surgery used to treat OSA.

Maxillomandibular advancement (MMA) is another surgery for OSA. It involves breaking and repositioning the upper and lower jaws to expand the airway. 

Dentists may use palate expanders to treat sleep apnea. These dental appliances gradually expand the upper jaw. This expansion eliminates obstructions causing sleep apnea, ensuring those who receive this treatment get enough oxygen while sleeping.

Your surgical options also include hypoglossal nerve stimulation (HGNS). With HGNS, surgeons install a device that stimulates the nerves controlling your tongue, keeping your tongue from blocking your airway when you’re asleep.

Radiofrequency volumetric tissue reduction (RFVTR) is another surgical treatment for OSA. This treatment involves removing tissue at the base of your tongue to prevent it from blocking your airway. Some people with OSA may also have lingualplasty, a surgery to reduce their tongue size

The best sleep apnea surgery depends on your type of sleep apnea. While nerve stimulation may be an effective treatment for central sleep apnea (CSA), tissue reduction won’t restore your brain signals. Determining the best surgical treatment for your sleep apnea begins with identifying the root causes of your condition. 

Success rates for sleep apnea surgery vary. Since recovery takes time, the period between surgery and post-surgery assessment affects results. Studies may also use different metrics to determine success. Depending on the study, UPPP’s success rate ranges from 16% to 83%

Depending on the metrics used to measure success, the success rate for MMA can be as high as 86%. This rate reflects a significant improvement in airflow, as 43% of those who undergo MMA achieve optimum airflow after surgery. 

Affording Sleep Apnea Surgery

When you book an appointment with an Absolute Dental dentist in Las Vegas, you’ll enjoy many payment options that make it possible to afford the dental care you need. Our Smile Saver program is a perfect option for those without dental insurance. If you sign up for Smile Saver, you’ll enjoy discounts on all dental services. We also offer regular discounts on services and dental appliances that can address your dental health issues. 

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Other Treatment Options

A continuous positive air pressure (CPAP) machine is one treatment option for regulating a person’s breathing while they sleep. The motor delivers pressurized air through the tube to the mask. You wear the mask while sleeping, and it covers your airways (mouth and nose). The steady delivery of pressurized air ensures your passages don’t close while asleep, preventing sleep apnea. CPAP machines can treat CSA and OSA.

If you’ve developed sleep apnea due to other health issues, weight gain, or stress, you may be able to treat the root causes. 

Risks of Forgoing Treatment

Without treatment, sleep apnea increases your risks of developing severe health issues, including the following:

  • Depression
  • Diabetes
  • Heart disease
  • Hypertension
  • Stroke
  • Weight gain
  • Thoughts of suicide

Sleep apnea can also weaken your immune system. 

We Accept Most Dental Insurance

Absolute Dental is a preferred provider for most insurances, unions, and hotels that include: Aetna, Ameritas, Boon-Chapman, Caesars Palace, Cigna, Delta Dental, Diversified, Geha, Guardian, Harrah’s, HealthSCOPE Benefits, Health Plan of Nevada (HPN), Humana, Liberty, Met-Life, MGM-MIRAGE, Premier Access, The Standard, Station Casinos, Teachers Health Trust, United Concordia, United Healthcare, Venetian, and The Zenith. We also accept Medicaid.

If you do not see your dental insurance listed here, just give us a call to confirm!

No Insurance? No Problem. Try our Smile Saver Program

Every person’s situation is different. If you don’t see your health insurance here, or if you do not have dental insurance, we can help you!

Call us now to discuss your situation and discover what options are right for you.

(844) 8-SMILE-NOW

Get the Sleep Apnea Treatment You Need

Absolute Dental’s expert dental team provides oral surgery in Las Vegas. We offer routine dental care, including exams and teeth cleanings. We can also answer your questions about sleep apnea and treatment options that could alleviate your symptoms. With our expert dental health care, we’ll restore your smile and your sleep. 

Book your next dental appointment today (844) 8‑SMILE‑NOW
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Sources:

Berg, S. (2022). What doctors wish patients knew about sleep apnea.
Continuous positive air pressure (CPAP). (2024).
Ferraz, O. (2016). Effectiveness of Maxillomandibular advancement (MMA) surgery in sleep apnea treatment: Case report.
How Sleep Affects Your Health. (2022).
Khan, A., et al. (2009). Uvulopalatopharyngoplasty in the Management of Obstructive Sleep Apnea: The Mayo Clinic Experience.
What Is Sleep Apnea? (2022).

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Las Vegas, Nevada 89117
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Las Vegas, Nevada 89117
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