Monday, May 31, 2010
Medical Reports: Sleep Solution
Many people suffer from a dangerous condition called sleep apnea, where they stop breathing at night. Most have to end up wearing a bulky machine like the C-Pap while they sleep. But now, dentists are giving them another option. In tonight's Healthcast, 7's Diana Diaz shows us a new "Sleep Solution."
WSVN -- Dub Brooks and his wife Suzanne have been together for 24 years. But recently, something big threatened to break up their marriage.
Dub Brooks: "I have a snoring issue."
Suzanne Brooks: "Big time, huge snoring issue. I just didn't know which one of us was going to have enough sleep deprivation that we did something we'd regret, like call a lawyer."
Dub was eventually diagnosed with sleep apnea, a problem where you actually stop breathing at night. Like most people, he was given a C-Pap machine to wear during sleep, to keep his airways open.
Dub Brooks: "They are a monstrous machine with a face mask and a hose. I stopped using it, because it was so uncomfortable, and it was noisy."
Oddly enough, Suzanne's recent trip to the dentist's office would offer up a new solution to the couple's problem.
Suzanne Brooks: "I'm in the lobby, and they have different pamphlets, and, I'm going, 'Hmm. Don't need that, don't need that.' And then I went, 'Ah! Do you snore? Do you know someone who has sleep apnea?' And I said, 'I sure do!'"
Fort Lauderdale Dentist Gary Kodish also suffers from sleep apnea. When the C-Pap didn't work for him, he decided to look for a better option for himself and his patients.
Dr. Gary Kodish: "I hated it. It was horrible, and I found something else to use."
He's now fitting patients with a new oral appliance called the Somnodent. It fits over the upper and lower teeth, much like a sports mouth guard. It keeps your tongue from blocking your airways.
Dr. Gary Kodish: "It takes your jaw and it moves it forward. Since your tongue is connected to your lower jaw, it takes the tongue out of the airway, the opening of the airway and allows you to breathe."
It has several advantages.
Dr. Gary Kodish: "You're not tied down to it. You can sleep on your side, you can sleep on you back. And the biggest thing is that they're going to wear it."
Dub decided to try the Somnodent but was skeptical at first.
Dub Brooks: "I thought this was way too simple to be a solution. But it was the perfect solution. Not only could I sleep, I slept comfortably."
Now the couple is back in the same bedroom, and sleeping soundly for the first time in years.
Suzanne Brooks: "I wanted to wake him up and go, 'You're sleeping, you're sleeping!' But I didn't."
Diana Diaz: "Some insurance companies will reimburse patients for the device."
FOR MORE INFO:
Dr. Gary Kodish
301 SE 16th Street
Fort Lauderdale, Florida 33316
(located on the corner of 3rd Ave. and 16th St.)