Snoring & Sleep Apnea Treatment

Snoring is often discussed with a humorous attitude and is even the butt of jokes on TV and in movies. If you snore frequently and loudly enough to disturb your partner and others in your household, chances are they don’t find it funny. The trouble is, despite its annoyance, many people don’t consider snoring a serious problem – at least not one that requires professional attention. However, the truth is that snoring can prove detrimental to your overall health, especially if it indicates obstructive sleep apnea (OSA).

What Causes Snoring?

Snoring is often the result of oral and throat tissues collapsing into your airway as you sleep. This partial obstruction forces your breath to pass through a much smaller airway, which leads to increased air pressure that vibrates your throat tissues, producing a loud noise. Besides the noise, snoring can force you to work harder to breathe while you sleep, which can have serious and immediate effects on your overall health and well-being and lead to premature aging.

In some cases, the obstruction will completely block the airway and lead to the cessation of breathing. Known as obstructive sleep apnea, this condition causes you to stop breathing momentarily until your body is forced to wake up and breathe again. This cycle can repeat itself (sometimes hundreds of times a night), stopping you from reaching the deep levels of sleep that you need to rest and rejuvenate.

Treating Snoring & Sleep Apnea

To diagnose sleep apnea, patients often must spend a night or two in a sleep study to be observed by a team of sleep experts. For a more convenient experience, we offer a take-home sleep study that helps you assess your risks of sleep apnea while sleeping comfortably in your own bed. The good news is that many patients can find relief from snoring and obstructive sleep apnea with a small, comfortable, custom-designed oral appliance. Unlike the continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine that is often prescribed for sleep apnea, a custom-made sleep appliance fits over your teeth to support your lower jaw and help keep your airway open.

We offer a number of different airway centric orthodontic appliance for patients of all ages, including Somnodent, Somnodent Herbst, Narval, EMA, and AveoTSD.

If you suffer from snoring or believe that you may have sleep apnea, then seek treatment as soon as possible to address the threat to your overall health. To schedule a consultation or sleep study, call Lawson Family Dentistry in Urbandale, IA, today at 515-278-4366.


Read what our sleep apnea patients are saying about their sleep appliances!

“While undergoing lifestyle changes to assist in losing weight (-70 pounds since 2011), I needed to reevaluate my previously diagnosed sleep apnea (diagnosed in 2009). With a massive amount of weight loss (over 70 pounds since 2011), I was ready to be reevaluated, wanted to get rid of the cumbersome C-PAP machine, and was looking for solutions. In 2013, Dr. Lawson stepped forward to educate me in my options of dental appliances vs. C-PAP. I left with a clear understanding as to what my options were. She and her staff then assisted with a new sleep study to ensure that I was a good candidate, and fortunately, I was. After our consultation, Dr. Lawson provided me a solution that met my needs—a SomnoMed dental appliance.

“Now, three years later, I am still using the SomnoMed dental appliance as a means to treat a minor level of sleep apnea. I don’t leave home without it, nor do I sleep at night without using my SomnoMed. In addition, I have been a patient of Lawson Family Dentistry since 2011, have referred multiple people to Dr. Lawson’s office, and look forward to continuing to do all of that in the future.” – Kirk 



“My first appliance lasted about 8 years. It broke right after my wife and I moved to the Des Moines area, in 2011. I was glad to learn that Dr. Lawson was able to fit me for a new appliance. Not only that, she had more than one option from which to choose. She took the time to help me select the right option. She was also very meticulous in fitting it for comfort and function. The time between my appliance breaking and Dr. Lawson delivering the new one was a good reminder of how well the appliance works. My sleep quality suffered without my appliance. Dr. Lawson was able to fast track a temporary one that minimized the amount of time that I had to wait. The new appliance works very well and is a little more comfortable than my first one.

“I have been working with Dr. Lawson to maintain my quality of sleep for about 4 years now. A good night’s sleep improves the quality of your life immensely. It is obvious that Dr. Lawson is well-trained, and very capable of helping improve the quality of your sleep with a dental appliance. I strongly recommend talking to her about one.” – Craig