[Ryan] Welcome back. We're all tired from time to time, but if it's a daily issue, it could be a warning sign of something more serious, like sleep apnea.
[Tiffany] That's right. It is our continuing series, Sleep Well. Breathe Well with ADVENT and we are finding a more convenient option for getting a good night's rest. Nurse practitioner Matt Peters is here to chat about the causes of sleep apnea and why ADVENT is leading the way in treatment. Good to have you back, Matt.
[Matt] Thank you.
[Tiffany] Absolutely. So here's the deal. A lot of people do. They wake up. They're still tired. They're like, you know what? I got enough sleep. Why am I feeling this way? Do you hear that a lot?
[Matt] We do hear that a lot. You know, we know that a lot of people have sleep problems and it's multifactorial. But, you know, the biggest thing is sleep apnea. You know, up to 70% of people aren't diagnosed with sleep apnea.
[Tiffany] It's that high?
[Matt] It's that high. So it's kind of like that silent thing. You know, the only symptom is snoring. And we know that, you know, at the end of the day, sleep requires what we call an open Breathing Triangle. So we define that as open sinuses, open nose and open throat.
[Tiffany] Yes. And we have it- I know we've got an illustration of The Breathing Triangle, because that's so important and you really use that to show. So this is how you describe it to people, right?
[Matt] Yeah, That's how we talk about it every day. You know, like, hey, these are the places we need to affect to get people to breathe well, and that means sleeping well.
[Ryan] Hmm. I mean, I can't imagine dealing with that every night. I mean, for those who don't know what actually is sleep apnea and why does it occur?
[Matt] So sleep apnea at the end of the day is an unhealthy Breathing Triangle. So it's when the throat is actually shutting down on you at night, that happens, you know, for some people, over 100 times an hour, they actually stop breathing. So getting the air they need to sleep well and breathe well. And they're waking up tired and just not feeling like they can live their best life.
[Tiffany] I feel like this is like a partner problem, right? Like, you don't always realize you're doing it so poorly yourself. It's your partner that's doing this all night.
[Ryan] Not naming any names, but how does someone who's all alone, sleeping alone every night know that they might have that?
[Matt] I mean, really, the best thing to do is to come in and see us.
[Tiffany] Yeah, because you're probably so exhausted because you're not really getting restorative sleep.
[Matt] Well, if it's the only throat you've had? You don't know. You don't know, like what a good night's sleep is sometimes, so. Yeah.
[Tiffany] That is a great point. And I always think of my brother because I always think of like, we were kids. He's eating cereal and he's always breathing through his mouth. And I've heard you guys talk like, you know, if you're [loud eating noises] you know, kind of like that. Yeah. That's oftentimes that's also a signal of a triangle problem. So what kinds of things do you do for someone who comes in and they've got a problem with their Breathing Triangle?
[Matt] Well, ADVENT understands that what a lot of medical professionals don't, is that, you know, we need to address that entire Breathing Triangle. So we know that 80% of people with sleep apnea also have nose or sinus issues as well. And when you can't breathe well through your nose, treating the sleep apnea is much more difficult. So if you want the best chance of having good treatment for sleep apnea, you need to have an open nose and sinuses as well as an open throat.
[Matt] So we start there and then, you know, really we talk about treatment options. And for sleep apnea itself, there's really three good treatment options. And they're less good in some places. But throat surgery, a CPAP device or now oral appliance therapy.
[Matt] Most people with throat surgery, that's really a hard sell. It's a very painful surgery. It's not really effective either. I mean, it takes a lot to get that throat surgery to be an effective option. And then CPAP. And no one likes their CPAP mask.
[Tiffany] But. It's kind of a gold standard, isn't it?
[Matt] It is the gold standard because it says that you can slap it on anyone is going to you're going to treat them. We have started doing oral appliance therapy at ADVENT.
[Matt] Which is-
[Tiffany] What you got right in your pocket.
[Matt] Which I got right in my pocket. It's a little bit smaller than the CPAP device.
[Tiffany] Oh. It looks like Invisalign.
[Matt] It's essentially like an Invisalign. So what it does, is it-
[Tiffany] Yeah, keep holding it right there because we're going to try and get a shot of it.
[Matt] It gently opens that mouth, that airway.
[Tiffany] I'm just going to show kind of over here. Yep.
[Matt] And it's pretty effective.
[Ryan] Oh, it's two separate pieces.
[Matt] Two separate pieces.
[Ryan] And how is that different from just a mouth guard you'd get, like at a dentist or something?
[Matt] So, I mean, we're the first medical practice in- one of the first medical practices in the country that's now brought oral appliance therapy into our clinic. We know that some of the over-the-counter mouth guards are going to be a lot more bulky. The device we're making here, we do the scan actually in our own office. So it's part of your regular evaluation as you're going through your journey with us. And then, you know, it's 92% more precise than some of those over-the-counter guys. But also because we're not just a dental practice, we also can follow up by making sure the sleep apnea is being treated well by doing a sleep study afterwards. You know, you go to the dentist, they give you a mouth guard and then you're, like, released into the wild.
[Ryan] See ya!
[Matt] Yeah. Oh, well, Is it is it actually doing what it's supposed to do? So we, you know, actually make adjustments to the device to make sure that it's working effectively for you.
[Tiffany] So that's a good point. That's really the difference between just going to your dentist and doing what you're doing, which is the same technique, but with true follow up on the sleep apnea. So here's a little bit about the dental scan. This is almost like just like a little like little laser thing, right? You're just tracking the teeth.
[Matt] It's actually pictures. So, okay. It's a technique called photogrammetry. So they're taking lots of pictures and building a really precise 3D model, Less than a 10th of a millimeter of leeway either direction.
[Tiffany] And you. Don't feel that. Right?
[Matt] I mean, it doesn't hurt. It's just this just in your mouth. You feel it in your mouth, but it's not it's not painful or discomfort. It's really just sitting there and, you know, it takes a few minutes.
[Tiffany] I love that because some people just go on Amazon and buy something these days and it's like those things just do not do the same quality. Go to the experts, get some real sleep, because at the end of the day, this can be life or death. It's a very important issue.
[Matt] Absolutely. Yeah. I mean, sleep apnea is a silent killer, you know, increases your risk for heart attacks and strokes and diabetes and high blood pressure. So there's a lot of things we can do to kind of affect someone's life.
[Tiffany] Thank you for joining us.
[Matt] You're welcome.
[Tiffany] It was a pleasure. If you think you might have a breathing triangle issue, you probably know if your chewing through your mouth like my brother. Go to our website. It's AdventMorningBlend.com to take a Breathing Triangle quiz. You can also schedule an appointment in just 60 seconds. Most insurances are accepted and no referral is required. ADVENT has locations in Wauwatosa, Mequon, Oconomowoc, Oak Creek and Pleasant Prairie. They also have offices in Appleton, Illinois, Indiana, and Minnesota. And if you're a partner, you can also go on and register for your loved one.