A private practice orthodontist in Vienna, Virginia, Dr. Allen Garai offers orthodontic and presurgical management of obstructive sleep apnea syndrome (OSAS). Here, Dr. Garai provides an overview of the condition’s symptoms and treatments.
Obstructive sleep apnea syndrome is a condition in which breathing becomes blocked during sleep. Depending on the severity of the condition, airway obstruction can happen from five to 50 times an hour. Nighttime symptoms include snoring, choking sensations, insomnia, and restless sleep, while excessive and debilitating sleepiness is the primary daytime symptom.
Despite its important associations with a variety of health problems, including depression, diabetes, hypertension, and cardiovascular disease, OSAS remains undiagnosed in an estimated 80 percent of patients with the condition. Once diagnosed, OSAS can be treated with continuous positive airway pressure, a device that keeps the airway open during sleep, or through lifestyle changes including weight loss and smoking cessation. When surgery is required, preoperative orthodontic treatments such as those offered by Dr. Garai can lead to 95 to 100 percent positive sleep results.