At Shook Dental Care, our mission is to help our patients live a healthy, pain-free life with a healthy, beautiful smile.
We see patients all the time who struggle with jaw joint problems and sleep apnea, both of which can have tremendously disruptive, uncomfortable symptoms.
But we can help!
Dr. Shook and our highly-trained team in San Pedro will do all we can to help you find relief from TMJ pain and restless sleep.
Today, we’re talking about a tiny device we offer as a solution for both issues that can give you a better smile and better sleep!
A Tiny, But Powerful Solution For TMJ Problems
One of the most overworked joint in the body is your TMJ, which stands for temporomandibular joint. It hinges at the back of your jawbone, just under your ears, so you can open and close your mouth.
Think about all the reasons you use your TMJ:
- To Eat
- To Speak
- To Laugh
- To Yawn
- To Sing
- To Kiss
- To Brush and Floss!
In other words, it’s an incredibly important joint that’s used over and over and over, every single day. As you might imagine, when that joint shifts out of proper alignment, it’s a recipe for pain, muscle tension, uncomfortable chewing, lockjaw, and more.
There’s a connection between TMJ disorders, or TMD, and bruxism, which is a fancy word for grinding your teeth. Over time, this can wear down your teeth and put your oral health at risk.
With a simple niteguard or dental splint, your upper and lower teeth can be separated while you sleep so you don’t grind your teeth, and it will help to eventually heal the damage you’ve suffered from TMJ disorder.
Relief For Sleep Apnea In The Palm Of Your Hand
Just as debilitating as the pain and tension from TMJ problems, sleep apnea is even potentially dangerous in its far-reaching impact on your daily life and your health.
Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder where you wake up many times, even as much as a hundred times or more, because you can’t breathe.
It’s when your airways become blocked, your body wakes suddenly for lack of oxygen, and you gasp desperately to resume normal breathing. It’s a vicious pattern that deprives you of the full, deep sleep you need to function.
There are a couple of possible reasons you lose air as a sleep apnea sufferer.
- Airways close under the weight of your relaxed throat muscles
- A malfunction of your brain’s messages to your body’s breathing mechanism
Since you need roughly eight hours of sleep to allow your body adequate time to rest and rejuvenate, sleep apnea can lead to daily struggles with:
- Weight Gain
- Health Risks (i.e. heart disease, diabetes, stroke, and depression)
Commonly used to treat sleep apnea is a CPAP machine, but it’s not right for everyone. Although it’s certainly effective, CPAP machines can be too noisy and uncomfortable for some patients who prefer not to wear the mask or have to spend time keeping the tube and mask clean.
That’s why Dr. Shook likes to give our patients another option. With an oral appliance that you wear while you sleep, you take the pressure off of your airways and keeps them open for a deeper, more beneficial night’s sleep.
Call Today For An Appointment!
Your teeth are important and have to be well cared for to stay strong for a lifetime. That means protecting them from certain behaviors that might do them harm or wear them down.
What’s equally important is the amount and quality of your sleep. Waking up all throughout the night because you can’t breathe will inevitably impact your mood, productivity, and health.
With a simple oral appliance, you can breathe easily while simultaneously protecting your teeth from clenching and grinding.
Whatever your issue, solutions and relief can be found at Shook Dental Care. Dr. Shook and our team are more than happy to sit down with you and discuss your discomfort and treat it effectively. We’re ready to see you live pain-free and enjoy restful sleep in 2018!