TMJ and Sleep Apnea Treatment

A sleep disorder can quickly diminish your quality of life. Jaw disorders, also known as TMJ or TMD, or sleep disorders like obstructive sleep apnea can take a toll on both your restful sleep and your waking life.

TMJ Diagnosis and Treatment

TMJ, or temporomandibular joint, disorders refer to a wide range of problems with the jaw. Some of the symptoms of a TMJ disorder include:

  • Painful jaw muscles/joints
  • Clicking, popping, or locking of the joints
  • Morning headaches
  • Migraines
  • Sensitivity
  • Cracked teeth
  • Gum recession
  • Neck and shoulder pain
  • Bite not coming together correctly

The symptoms may come and go or remain steady, and they can be accompanied by a condition known as bruxism, or teeth grinding. Teeth grinding over a long period of time can degenerate your jaw joints, cause broken teeth, and even disrupt your restful sleep cycles, resulting in mood disorders and fatigue.

We treat TMD using oral appliance therapy, which means we create a custom-designed splint that not only protects your teeth from clenching and grinding, but also helps your jaw joint slide gently into an ideal position, allowing your muscles to relax.

We may also make small adjustments to your dentistry or your teeth. Your bite is an important part of your jaw health and comfort. If things don’t fit together properly, everything can become inflamed and irritated.

Obstructive Sleep Apnea Treatment

Sleep apnea is usually diagnosed through an accredited sleep clinic using either a home study or an overnight study. Obstructive sleep apnea is a condition that blocks your airway as you sleep. This leads to a host of medical and psychological disorders such as:

  • Heart disease
  • Hypertension
  • Obesity
  • Stroke
  • Moodiness
  • Depression
  • Fatigue

When left untreated, the results can be dramatic, even fatal.

The first line of treatment with obstructive sleep apnea, or OSA, is often a CPAP (continuous positive air pressure) machine that you wear over your face at night to keep your airway open. You will probably not be surprised to hear that many people have difficulty sleeping with a mask on.

We provide an alternative to CPAP treatment with oral appliance therapy. We design a custom oral appliance that will gently slide your lower jaw forward, allowing your airway to stay open. This also works great to address snoring that is not sleep-apnea related, and it may save your life!

If you want an alternative to CPAP therapy, give us a call and set up an appointment. We can help you get a better, and healthier, night’s sleep.

Contact Us for a Dental Appointment

Our team looks forward to hearing from you and helping you achieve a better night’s sleep with effective oral appliance therapies. Give our San Leandro dental office a call! We look forward to hearing from you.