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Sleep Apnea and the Obese Patient

 

Sleep Apnea and the Obese Patient
by Randal S. Baker, MD, FACS

Loud snoring is a common sign of a breathing problem that can lead to other issues. According to the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, approximately 10 to 30 percent of adults snore. Loud snoring, however, is a sign of a serious disorder and affects about five in every 100 people.

When a person snores, it is because the breathing passages in the back of the throat are narrowed and not fully open, thus restricting the amount of air taken in while sleeping. It is like trying to breathe through a wet, sloppy noodle. When the body cannot get enough air, it signals the brain to breathe harder and force the air in (that terrible snoring sound), or if it cannot get any air in (and you stop breathing); it wakes the body up in order to correct the problem.

This can happen hundreds of times a night, and the cumulative effect can lead to chronic sleepiness, trouble concentrating and even depression. The body’s repeated lack of restorative sleep over an extended period can also lead to more serious problems as well, including high blood pressure, heart attack and stroke.

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Digital Radiography: An Improvement?

Despite the many advantages of digital radiography, many practitioners in North America still have not made the switch from conventional, film-based radiography. From our observations and discussions with thousands of dentists, the reasons for not transitioning to digital radiography include high cost, no other forms of digital in the office (ie, computers in the operatories, practice management software, etc), unwillingness to endure the hassle of conversion and staff training, and for some, the complete disbelief that digital radiography is an improvement over conventional forms. Many of the objections are valid; however, the overall benefits of digital radiography far surpass the limitations.
This article includes a discussion of the advantages and limitations of digital radiography, the diagnostic quality of digital radiography versus conventional film-based, the various types of digital radiography available based on image size, the types of digital radiography best suited for specific clinical indications, and anticipated future advances in digital radiography.

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Treating completely blocked canines and full step Class II malocclusion


Dr. Todd Bovenizer presents a full step Class II malocclusion with blocked-out canines utilizing light open coil springs and elastics with the Damon™ System’s Damon™ Q brackets

Evaluation and treatment of Class II malocclusion can present a challenge to the practitioner. One must consider the facial ramifications, as well as skeletal and dental characteristics. This particular case presented with severe crowding that further complicated the diagnosis and treatment planning. This case exemplifies a challenge in multiple planes of space, A-P, transverse, and vertical.

The following case will illustrate how I implemented the combination of variable torques of Damon™ Q, with NiTi coil spring, and early elastic therapy to avoid extraction of maxillary premolars. The ending result was a well-developed transverse arch with ideal incisal inclination.

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Doctors Explore Connection Between Sleep Apnea and Heart Failure

-Tyrone Conner’s heart was in such bad shape that he could barely walk up a flight of steps.

“I felt like I was 80 years old,” said Conner, 50, of Norristown.

He also suffered from sleep apnea, snoring heavily and gasping for breath every night.

What he did not initially realize was that the two problems were linked.

Conner’s physicians, at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, made the connection, but many do not. Sleep apnea afflicts as many as 60 percent of patients with heart failure — the term for a weakened heart muscle that cannot keep up with the body’s demands. Yet only 2 percent of them nationwide are treated for the nocturnal breathing problem, said Sunil Sharma, associate director of the Jefferson Sleep Disorders Center.

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Digital X-Rays

Dr. Billings uses digital X-Rays to provide a higher quality of dental care and more accurate diagnoses. The process of digitally capturing an image is faster, safer, and more comfortable for the patient.

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