Answering Your Questions About Sleep Apnea

Answering Your Questions About Sleep ApneaSleep apnea is a condition in which an individual suffering from the condition may be unaware of the occurrence as it takes place during rest. This is a common disorder that causes breathing to cease at night for short periods of time, disrupting slumber and increasing the risk of developing issues pertaining to your overall health. Obstructive sleep apnea, or OSA, is the most common form and generally occurs when your tonsils, or the base of your throat obstruct the airway, leading to the cessation of breath.

Sleep Apnea Questions

How will I know if I suffer from sleep apnea?

While you may be unaware of the occurrence at first, there are a few signs to look out for that point to sleep apnea. For instance, when breathing stops during sleep, your mind panics and forces your body awake and interrupting sleep. When sleep is interrupted, you are not able to obtain a full night’s rest, and may feel fatigued and have difficulty staying awake throughout the day. If this remains untreated, it can lead to complications with your overall health.

If I snore, does that automatically mean sleep apnea?

One of the first signs that may point to the occurrence of sleep apnea is snoring; however, just because you snore, it doesn’t always signify the occurrence. Snoring is caused by an obstructed airway, forcing the tissues to vibrate due to increased air pressure. Sleep apnea occurs when the airway is completely blocked, stopping your breathing entirely.

Is sleep apnea treatable, or will this remain an ongoing occurrence?

Sleep apnea is not something you will be required to live with and can be treated with a few simple methods. The overall goal is to prevent oral tissues from becoming over-relaxed and collapsing into the airway. A simple yet effective treatment option may include a custom-built dental appliance, similar to a mouthguard, to position your jaw forward in order to prevent airway blockage.


Dr. Burds and his team focus the care they provide on enhancing every aspect of your dental health. To schedule an appointment, call Gateway Dental Group at (515) 244-9565. Located in Des Moines, IA, we proudly welcome patients from River Bend, Kirkwood Glen, East Village, and all surrounding communities.