By Progressive Dental Solutions
June 16, 2017
Category: Oral Health

If you have sleep apnea or you are a chronic loud snorer, find out how a special oral device could help.oral applance therapy

Does your partner complain that your snoring is keeping the whole house up? Has a sleep specialist recently diagnosed you with obstructive sleep apnea? If so, then you may be surprised to hear that our Pittsburgh area dentist Dr. Michael Hnat could actually help treat your sleep apnea symptoms and your unbearable snoring through something as simple as a custom-made oral appliance.

Why do you need to treat sleep apnea?

A lot of people have sleep apnea but don’t even know it. They chock up their daytime exhaustion to drinking too much caffeine, not enough caffeine, not getting enough sleep or (more commonly) stress.

Of course, if you find yourself feeling exhausted despite a sufficient amount of rest, then you may want to see a sleep specialist to find out if something more is going on. If left untreated, sleep apnea can increase your risk of high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke and diabetes. Not to mention that your extreme fatigue could lead to poor performances at work and even accidents.

How can oral appliance therapy help me?

If you have been diagnosed with mild-to-moderate sleep apnea then you ca be re-evaluated by our Pittsburgh dentist to find out if oral appliance therapy is all you need to manage your sleep disorder and wake up feeling refreshed and alert.

While CPAP therapy is the standard treatment for sleep apnea, it can be annoying to wear a facemask all night long. You may find that the noise of the machines keeps you up. So if CPAP therapy isn’t giving you the sound, quality sleep you thought it would, then it might be time to come in and talk with or schedule an appointment to speak with Dr. Michael Hnat, board-certified in dental sleep medicine, about your snoring, sleep apnea, and the alternative treatment with an oral appliance. He is dedicated to making sure that you get the care you need to finally get a good night’s sleep. If you are dealing with any of these sleep problems, give us a call and schedule your consultation today.

By Progressive Dental Solutions
July 21, 2016
Category: Oral Health
Tags: TMJ  

Find out how our Pittsburgh dentist can treat TMJ disorders.

There are many ways to treat symptoms of TMJ disorders to reduce pain and discomfort. While many people will notice their symptoms disappearing over time there are others who may need to really work with our Pittsburgh general dentist Dr. Michael Hnat to get the TMJproper treatment they need. Find out more about splint therapy and how it works.

What is a dental splint?

A dental splint goes by a lot of other names like night guards or mouthpieces. They can be made from either hard or soft material and they can cover all of your teeth or only certain teeth. Splints can be used for a variety of different conditions including sleep apnea, but dental splinting has also been known to help alleviate jaw problems due to TMJ disorder.

How do dental splints work?

Because dental splints help the jaw muscles relax, it can reduce facial tension and also reduce jaw problems caused by teeth grinding or jaw clenching. If your TMJ disorder is a result of your teeth grinding, wearing a dental splint can prevent wear and tear on your teeth and reduce the chances of tooth pain and sensitivity.

If your bite isn’t aligned properly your Pittsburgh dentist may recommend a dental splint to help adjust your bite to reduce the amount of strain and pressure that is being placed on your facial muscles.

What types of dental splints are available in Pittsburgh?

There are two types of splints to choose from: stabilization splints and repositioning splints. Stabilization splints are most often worn to prevent both teeth grinding and jaw clenching. These splints can be made from either hard or soft materials and are designed to cover all of your teeth. These splints are most often worn while you sleep.

Repositioning splints are used to reposition the jaw forward to improve your bite and to take pressure of certain muscles and ligaments. These types of splints are worn all day long.

Want to find out if splint therapy is the right treatment option for you? Then it’s time you called our Pittsburgh dental office. Let Progressive Dental Solutions help you achieve amazing oral health time after time.

By Total Health Dentistry
March 28, 2016
Category: Oral Health
Tags: TMJ   jaw pain  

Jaw pain can be more than just a source of minor discomfort. It can develop to a point where eating or even talking becomes a major jaw painchallenge. It can even cause headaches and ear discomfort. Jaw pain is often caused by a condition called TMJD of temporomandibular joint and muscle disorder. If you’ve been struggling with this problem to any degree, you’ll be happy to learn that simple solutions may be available at Progressive Dental Solutions for Sleep and TMJ, your Pittsburgh dentist's office.

What Causes Jaw Pain?
Dentists aren’t sure about exactly what causes jaw pain and TMJD, but there are theories. Here are a few potential causes that you can investigate with your dentist:

- A previous injury to the jaw or head.
- An overbite or underbite that’s putting pressure on the joint that connects the jaw.
- Bruxism (clenching and grinding the teeth at night).
- Arthritis.
- Chewing gum too much.
- An occupation or recreation that requires you to yell or shout often, which puts strain on the joint over time. 

Dentists have found that jaw pain is most common in women ages 20-40 years old, which may suggest a hormonal factor.

Treatment Options
Your Pittsburgh dentist can help relieve or reduce your jaw pain with simple treatments. These are a few of the most common solutions:

- Dental splints or bite guard
- Orthodontic treatment to correct the jaw’s position.
- Medication to give you relief as the joints heal.
- Physical therapy exercises to strengthen the jaw.

In rare cases, dental surgery may be required to either get a better look at the cause of the jaw pain (arthroscopy) or to replace the joints.

Preventing Jaw Pain
You can take actions at home to prevent problems with jaw pain in the future. Consider these simple suggestions:

- Avoid opening your mouth too wide (as you may do when shouting).
- Stop grinding your teeth at night by wearing a night guard to bed, which are available at your dentist’s office.
- Eat healthy foods that promote bone health, like dairy and dark leafy greens.

Call for Help with Jaw Pain
You don’t have to continue to struggle with jaw pain. Call Progressive Dental Solutions for Sleep and TMJ in Pittsburgh at (724) 942-5630 to schedule an appointment and get the treatment you need.

By Total Health Dentistry
January 14, 2016
Category: Oral Health
Tags: Snoring   Sleep Apnea  

Is a CPAP the Only Way to Treat Snoring and Sleep Apnea? Now your dentist can help with snoring and sleep apnea.

You’ve been told you snore by those closest to you. You often wake up in the middle of the night, gasping and choking for air. You wake up with a dry, sore throat, and sometimes with a headache, and find yourself dozing off during the day. You have been diagnosed with Sleep Apnea sleep apnea.

Sleep apnea results from soft tissue at the back of your throat collapsing during sleep. This soft tissue blocks your airway, and stops your breathing for short periods. When you can’t breathe, your brain and organs are starved of oxygen. Oxygen starvation can lead to organ failure, memory difficulties, heart failure and stroke.

You’ve tried to wear a continuous positive air pressure machine, called a CPAP, but you’ve found it very uncomfortable, restrictive and you stopped wearing it. Now, you’re looking for something else. Fortunately, there is another solution. Dr. Michael Hnat, of Progressive Dental Solutions for Sleep and TMJ in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, can provide you with a wonderful state-of-the-art remedy for snoring and sleep apnea.

Dr. Hnat will design an Oral Mandibular Advancement Appliance, custom-made for you. The dental appliance fits over your lower and upper teeth, and it causes your lower jaw to shift forward slightly, just enough to keep your airway open. The result is you will sleep soundly throughout the night and wake up refreshed and ready to start your day.

Sleep apnea patients throughout the country have received much needed relief from snoring and waking up, gasping for breath. Patients report the oral appliance is much easier to wear than CPAP. So if you are tired of your CPAP and are looking for a better way to treat snoring and sleep apnea, give Dr. Michael Hnat a call. He is your sleep apnea specialist in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Call today and sleep better immediately!

By Total Health Dentistry
September 30, 2015
Category: Oral Health
Tags: TMJ  

Concerned your symptoms could be caused by a TMJ disorder? Find out now!

Experiencing jaw pain and discomfort? Notice an uncomfortable popping sound when opening your jaw? Then it might be time to see TMJyour Pittsburgh, PA dentist Dr. Michael F. Hnat about whether TMJ could be to blame.

What is TMJ?

Also known as temporomandibular joint and muscle disorders, this group of conditions causes pain and other problems for the jaw joint and muscles, which in turn affects jaw movement.

What are the causes of TMJ?

There are some people who develop TMJ after direct trauma or injury to their jaw or jaw joint. TMJ disorders can also occur if the jaw disc becomes eroded or misaligned, or if arthritis has affected the cartilage surrounding the joint. Otherwise, the cause is often unknown.

What are the common risk factors for developing TMJ?

Even though the cause is usually not clear, we do find that women between the ages of 20 and 40 are more likely to develop this jaw joint and muscle disorder. But this condition also happens to men and can occur at any age.

How can my Pittsburgh dentist help my TMJ?

Many patients experience some relief from their TMJ symptoms by taking over-the-counter pain relievers like ibuprofen, which can reduce both discomfort and inflammation. For those who experience more severe pain, talk to your dentist in Pittsburgh about whether a prescription pain reliever might be more effective. Other medications that can help TMJ symptoms include:

  • Tricyclic antidepressants
  • Muscle relaxants
  • Sedatives (particularly for those who clench their teeth at night)

Besides medications, there are also oral splints (or bite guards) that we may recommend wearing each night while you sleep. Those with jaw pain can often find relief from wearing these plastic oral devices overnight.

While there is no cure for TMJ, these treatments can certainly help. Of course, if you notice any change or worsening of symptoms then it’s time to talk to your Pittsburgh dentist about other treatment options. Progressive Dental Solutions is here for you.

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