Tuesday, August 28, 2012 at 07:15PM
In a general dental office, dentists are seeing patients on a regular basis and from a diagnostic perspective, Dr. Steve Lawson can make a good diagnosis without a lot of high-tech equipment.
By looking at a patient's enamel, for example, at his practice in Winnipeg, Canada, he can see if it's worn down and think there's an airway problem.
As a dentist, Dr. Lawson says, he can look at things differently as to what red flags are being waved at me in terms of what else is going on. If it's TMD, or temporomandibular disorders, in the early states, Dr. Lawson can treat it inexpensively by dealing with what is going on at night. The same goes for any evidence of snoring or sleep apnea, he says.
With many clinical signs of obstructive sleep apnea, dentists are often on the front line in making a diagnosis. Dr. Lawson says that there are more and more findings making the association between obstructive sleep apnea and negative health risks. He adds that "the signs are sadly being missed in the dental profession."
Dr. Lawson is a leading sleep expert with Sleep Better TV and for more information on his practice, the TMJ & Sleep Therapy Centre of Winnipeg, Canada, visit www.tmjsnoring.ca.