Sleep apnea occurs when you frequently stop breathing while asleep. Most people with sleep apnea also snore excessively.
When you sleep, your tongue or other tissues in the throat block your airway and stop your breathing. Your brain wakes you up every time you stop breathing. This constant interruption of sleep can increase your risk for heart disease, high blood pressure and other serious health issues.
Your airway can be blocked by abnormal or enlarged tissues, such as:
- Adenoids, tissue patches that trap germs at the back of each nasal cavity
- Nasal passages, also called sinuses
- Relaxed throat muscles
- Soft palate, the back part of the roof of your mouth
- Tonsils, two bumps on each side of the back of the throat that catch germs
- Uvula, a fleshy ball at the back of the throat that makes saliva
Your doctor will examine your airway to determine the cause of your airway blockage.
Types of Sleep Apnea Surgery
You may need sleep apnea surgery if positive airway pressure machines and other treatments do not improve your condition. The type of procedure you need depends on the cause of your sleep apnea. Some of these treatments also reduce snoring. Treatments we offer include:
- Oral Appliance to reposition your lower jaw
- Chin repositioning. We divide the chin bone and move it forward. This creates more space for your tongue, opens the airway and stabilizes your jaw and mouth.
- Jaw repositioning. We move the jaw forward to create more space behind your tongue and open the airway.
Make an Appointment with Emory Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery
We provide oral maxillofacial specialty care for adults and children. For information, call 404-778-4500.