WESTMINSTER, CO: Dr. Kenneth Polke, founder of American Dental Excellence (http://americandentalexcellence.com) in Westminster, CO, in the Denver area, offers custom-fit oral appliances that help treat sleep apnea and handle snoring problems.

Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA), is a sleep-related breathing disorder that is characterized by a decrease or complete halt in the airflow. It occurs when the muscles in the throat and mouth go slack during sleep, allowing the tongue to fall back and push against the soft palate in the back of the throat and obstruct the airway. This can happen many times in a single night and can result in exhaustion during the day, high blood pressure, snoring, as well as increased risk for diabetes, heart attacks, strokes, headaches, and depression.

The two most common treatment methods are continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machines, and for mild to moderate sleep apnea – an oral appliance.

Oral appliances are convenient, comfortable, and usually more portable than other methods of treatment. Older appliance styles forced the jaw forward slightly to lower the tongue and open the airway. This can cause permanent bite changes, muscle change, and permanent joint changes. Newer, more improved designs gently hold the teeth apart and hold down the tongue to keep it from falling back and blocking the airway.

Dr. Polke says “Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) is potentially life threatening and often goes undiagnosed. Its many side effects can be lessened or reversed with simple and effective treatment options. If you’re diagnosed with OSA, consult with your dentist to help you decide if an oral appliance is ideal for you, and work with your dentist to choose an appliance that works for your specific needs.”

Dr. Kenneth J. Polke is originally from Cleveland, Ohio. He received his Bachelor’s degree from the University of Dayton, and went on to study dentistry at Case Western University Dental School. Kenneth Polke is also an NFL Alumni, having played in the NFL for the Miami Dolphins and as quarterback for the Cleveland Browns! While he still has a passion for football, he chooses to serve the needs of his patients at American Dental Excellence (http://americandentalexcellence.com), which he opened in 1981. Dr. Polke is an active member of many professional associations, including the Academy of General Dentistry, the American Dental Society of Anesthesiologists, and the International College of Oral Implantologists. He has a Fellowship in the Academy of General Dentistry, and is a Diplomat of the International College of Oral Implantologists. American Dental Excellence can be reached at 303-920-4900.