Sleep Apnea – Adults and Children

Dr. Rick Soordhar and Dr. Vick Soordhar have specialized training in recognizing the symptoms and risk factors for sleep apnea in adults and children.

Sleep Apnea can affect all age groups from infants to adults.

Causes of Sleep Apnea

Obstructive Sleep Apnea is fundamentally an orthopedic problem (upper jaw/lower jaw/back of throat/tongue) from the inability of the mandible to maintain a patent airway. Normally during sleep, the muscles which control the tongue and soft palate, hold the airway open. If these muscles relax too much, the airway becomes narrower which causes snoring and breathing difficulties. If the muscles relax too much, the airway can become completely blocked and prevent breathing. After a period of time, which can be from 10 seconds to 2 minutes, the brain realizes there is a lack of oxygen and alerts the body to wake up. Though the sufferer is not aware of it, this cycle can happen several hundred times during the night, severely disrupting sleep (Robert L. Talley, D.D.S.)

Other causes are 1. underdeveloped upper and lower jaws and 2. enlarged adenoids and tonsils

Signs and Symptoms in Adults:


  • snoring
  • stop breathing while sleeping, then “snort”
  • grinding teeth
  • headaches
  • excessive daytime tiredness
  • mental confusion / memory loss
  • overweight
  • male neck size over 17 inches
  • female neck size over 16
  • hypertension
  • GERD (acid reflux)
  • family history of sleep apnea

Signs and Symptoms in Toddlers and Children:


  • snoring
  • grinding teeth
  • mouth breathing
  • frequent ear infections
  • enlarged adenoids/tonsils
  • bed wetting
  • sleep talking
  • sleep walking
  • night terrors
  • hyperactivity / ADHD
  • trouble focusing in school
  • thrashing in bed at night

Treatment in adults:

  • 1. Oral Sleep Appliance (MRA) for treatment of Mild Sleep Apnea
  • 2. Oral Sleep Appliance (MRA) for treatment of Moderate Sleep Apnea
  • 3. Oral Sleep Appliance (MRA) for treatment of CPAP intolerance.
  • 4. CPAP for treatment of Severe Sleep Apnea

Treatment in Children:

  • 1.Upper & lower jaw develepment with dental orthopedic appliances due to underdeveloped jaws.
  • 1. underdeveloped upper jaw increases ear infection rate
  • 2. underdeveloped upper jaw decreases airway size (back of the troat)
  • 3. underdeveloped upper & lower jaw causes an airway restriction (back of throat)
  • 2. Removal of adenoids / tonsils if required.

Effects of Sleep Apnea on Your Health

People with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) have disrupted sleep and low blood oxygen levels. When obstructive sleep apnea occurs, the tongue is sucked against the back of the throat. This blocks the upper airway and airflow stops. When the oxygen level in the brain becomes low enough, the sleeper partially awakens, the obstruction in the throat clears, and the flow of air starts again, usually with a loud gasp.

Repeated cycles of decreased oxygenation lead to very serious cardiovascular problems. Additionally, these individuals suffer from excessive daytime sleepiness, depression, and loss of concentration.

Some patients have obstructions that are less severe called Upper Airway Resistance Syndrome (UARS). In either case, the individuals suffer many of the same symptoms.

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  • Email:info@oasisdentalmilton.com
  • Phone:905-876-2747
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