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Sleep Apnea in Shirley

More than 18 million Americans are affected by some degree of sleep apnea. Sleep apnea can cause restless, poor-quality sleep and even lead to a higher risk of stroke and heart attack among some individuals.

If you think that you may have sleep apnea, or that your loved one or partner may be suffering from this condition, Dr. Matthew Annese of Nashoba Valley Dental can help. Learn more about sleep apnea from our dental practice in Shirley, Groton and Lunenburg now.




Sleep Apnea vs. Snoring – What’s the Difference?

Snoring is one of the most common signs of sleep apnea, but it’s not a real problem on its own. Snoring is caused when airflow to the nose and throat is turbulent, resulting in a vibration of the tissues in the mouth and throat.

Sleep apnea, on the other hand, occurs when the tissues of the throat and soft palate relax and block airflow almost entirely. This can cause snoring, as well as a variety of other symptoms such as waking up and gasping for air. Sleep apnea can be dangerous and lead to a variety of other health complications such as higher blood pressure, daytime sleepiness and more.

Recognizing The Signs Of Sleep Apnea

So, how can you recognize sleep apnea? Here are some of the most common signs and symptoms:

  • Daytime sleepiness
  • Irritability and weariness when waking up, even after sleeping for 7-8 hours
  • Headaches and migraines, especially immediately after waking up
  • Waking up and gasping or choking
  • Night sweats
  • Excessive and heavy snoring
  • Dry mouth and throat after waking up

If you recognize one or more of these symptoms, you may be suffering from sleep apnea, and should have a professional sleep assessment and consultation performed by a qualified physician.

The Most Common Sleep Apnea Treatments

For most minor cases of sleep apnea, an oral appliance is recommended. This device is similar in shape and size to a retainer or mouthguard. It is designed by a qualified dentist to help move the tissues of the mouth and throat into a better position during sleep, thereby preventing obstruction when the muscles relax.

CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) machines are also common. These devices use a special air pump and a mask to provide positive pressure and continuous airflow to the airway, preventing tissue relaxation.

Surgical intervention is also an option, but usually only required for severe cases of obstructive sleep apnea.

Come to Nashoba Valley Dental for a Sleep Apnea Consultation!

Dr. Matthew Annese has years of experience treating sleep apnea and can provide you with a consultation in Pepperhill, Leominster, and Harvard. Learn more about our services from our patient testimonials now!

Whether you think you may have sleep apnea, or you suspect that your partner may be suffering from a sleep disorder, contact us for a consultation now. You can give us a call at (978) 425-9088, or visit our office at 228 Great Rd., Shirley, MA 01464. Don’t let sleep apnea prevent you from getting a good night’s rest. Come see us today!



“Working With Patients to Create Healthy Smiles,
For Life”

- Dr. Matthew Annese


Our office is located about 30 miles outside of Boston, in Shirley, MA. We offer full-service dental care to the entire local community.

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