Sleep apnea is a serious medical condition that must be diagnosed by a medical doctor or sleep physician. Many hospitals have sleep diagnostic centers where they can diagnose sleep apnea. Your dentist, Dr. Chetan Parikh, can perform simple screenings for sleep apnea and can help you schedule a diagnosis with your doctor or sleep physician. Your sleep apnea screening (or polysomnogram) can be performed in a sleep laboratory, or at home using an ambulatory sleep study machine, such as the Nox T3 and Medibyte junior.
While it is estimated that some 22 million Americans suffer from sleep apnea, 8 in 10 moderate to severe cases go undiagnosed. To diagnose sleep apnea, you will be connected to machines that monitor your heart, brain, eye, and muscle activity during a seven-hour sleep period. If you suffer from sleep apnea, you will have a decreased amount of oxygen saturation (oxyhemoglobin) in the blood, and there may be abnormalities or interruptions in heart, brain, eye, and muscle activity during sleep. You will be able to sleep comfortably during the diagnosis session, which is conducted in a private room.
Sleep studies are simple to perform and painless. They can usually be completed in just one night. Your results will then be analyzed by your medical doctor, and your doctor and Dr. Chetan Parikh will work together to provide an appropriate treatment and help you rest better at night.
For more information on how sleep apnea is diagnosed, we welcome you to contact Chetan Parikh, DMD, MDS, DABCDSM today.