This post is the second in our four part series on treatment of OMDs with myofunctional therapy. If you haven’t read part 1 yet, I recommend you do before continuing.
Treatment of sleep apnea with myofunctional therapy
Sleep apnea is a condition where the airway is restricted or blocked during sleep, causing the sleeper to run out of oxygen and partially wake. In the past, sleep apnea was thought to be a condition that only affected older men. However, medical professionals have come to realize that sleep apnea has been heavily under diagnosed. Sleep experts now estimate that over 18 million Americans suffer from sleep apnea. (1)
The most common type of sleep apnea, obstructive sleep apnea, occurs when the tissues of the mouth, tongue, and/or throat partially collapse, causing airway obstruction. These sleep disruptions, called apneas, can lead to a wide variety of problems in a number of the body’s systems. Symptoms include waking up with a dry mouth, sore throat, or headache, drowsiness and an inability to feel rested even after sufficient sleep time, difficulty staying asleep, irritability, lack of attention or focus, high blood pressure, increased risk of heart disease, memory loss, weight gain or inability to lose weight, and more.
Since obstructive sleep apnea, or OSA, is caused by improper positioning of the muscles of the mouth, tongue, throat, throat, and upper airway, myofunctional therapy can be a very effective tool for combating it. Myofunctional therapy allows you and your therapist to to specifically target the muscles causing the problem, and strengthen and retrain them with a series of specifically designed exercises. This improvement in strength and posture will allow the tissues to avoid collapsing during sleep. Since myofunctional therapy combats the cause of OSA, it is effective at relieving virtually all of its symptoms.
Check back soon for Treatment of OMDs with Orofacial Myofunctional Therapy, Part 3. In the meantime, check out our page on treatment of OMDs.
1 – https://www.sleepapnea.org/learn/sleep-apnea/