How Does Palatal Snoring Affect Your Dental Health?
If you snore excessively during the night, you might try everything in your power to stop it, including wearing nasal strips and sleeping on your sides. But if these methods don’t work, see a dentist for help. You may have a palatal snoring problem, a condition that may lead to dry mouth, halitosis, and tooth decay.
Dry mouth, halitosis, and tooth decay can become big problems unless you find treatment for your snoring. Learn how palatal snoring develops, how it affects your dental health, and what you can do to overcome it.
What’s Palatal Snoring?
Snoring can occur when your tongue relaxes and blocks airflow through your throat, or snoring can happen when the tissues in your nasal cavity swell or fill up with fluid. Snoring can even occur when something is wrong with the soft palate and uvula found at the back of your throat. This type of snoring is called palatal snoring.
The soft palate and uvula prevent food and liquid from entering your nasal cavity as well as help your tongue form different word and letter sounds. If the one or both tissues swell, sag, or become traumatized by injury, they partially or fully block the airway between your nasal cavity and throat.
As air tries to pass around the tissues, the air produces a vibrating sound. The soft palate and uvula can also strike against other and vibrate when you inhale and exhale. Both types of vibrations can make you snore at night.
Palatal snoring doesn’t go away with time. In many cases, the condition can cause several issues with the tissues inside your mouth.
How Does Palatal Snoring Affect Your Mouth?
Many people keep their mouths open when they snore, which allows air to enter the mouth and dry out the saliva. Saliva contains enzymes that wash away bacteria. If you don’t have enough saliva, the bacteria inside your mouth can grow out of control on the surfaces of your teeth and tongue. You experience bad breath (halitosis) as a result.
Mouth bacteria can also create a powerful acid that dissolves or consumes the minerals in your tooth enamel. Saliva prevents cavities by neutralizing the acids in your mouth and by supplying your enamel with minerals throughout the day. Without sufficient saliva, your enamel can’t obtain the minerals it needs to rebuild itself.
If your snoring caused any of the dental problems above, see a dentist for care.
How Do You Stop Snoring and Treat Your Dental Problems?
Although snoring is a sleep condition, a dentist can put you on the right track to overcoming it. One of the things a dentist might do is examine the soft tissues in your mouth to see if they’re injured. If you have soft tissue injuries, a dentist may refer you to a specialist for surgery or another treatment.
If you only have an infection in your soft palate and uvula, a dentist may go ahead and treat you with antibiotics. You may need to gargle your mouth and throat with an antiseptic rinse to destroy the infection. The exact treatment plan for an injured or infected soft palate and uvula may vary, depending on the dentist treating you.
If your snoring caused problems with your saliva, a dentist may instruct you to use a moisturizing mouthwash to replenish it. The mouthwash may also remove the excessive bacteria from your teeth and tongue. Tongue scrapers and water flossers can also clean and freshen up your mouth.
The other dental treatments available to you may include dental fillings and crowns. Both restorations can repair teeth damaged by tooth decay. In some cases, a dentist can fill a tooth, then cover it with a crown.
If the decay is extensive in your teeth, you may need a root canal treatment. Sometimes, cavities or decay can spread to the roots of teeth. If a dentist doesn’t remove the decay and infection, it can destroy the tooth completely or spread to the jaw.
After you receive all of the dental treatment you need to restore your teeth, a dentist may suggest that you wear a mouth guard at night. Although dental providers use mouth guards to treat teeth grinding, mouth guards can also help protect patients who suffer from snoring. Some people who snore may also suffer from teeth grinding.
If you qualify for a mouth guard, a dentist will customize one for you. The guard keeps your mouth closed and airways open by repositioning your jaw. You should wear your mouth guard as prescribed by a dentist. If you experience any problems with your guard, contact a dentist for further instructions.
Don’t allow your snoring to disrupt your life or dental health. Contact the office of Dr. Jerry F. Maymi & Associates for a private exam of your soft palate and uvula today.