The airway is king. The tongue is queen. But it isn’t always a smooth relationship. Sometimes, you will hear their struggle all night in the form of loud snoring. Sometimes, the tongue can even be like Cersei Lannister and kill off the king–that’s what we call obstructive sleep apnea.
The Size of Your Airway Matters
Our body runs on oxygen, and one of the big differences between great athletes and most people is just how much oxygen they can get into their lungs. Part of this is related to their lungs, but part of it is related to their airway.
Without a proper sized airway, we don’t function well. We lack energy, concentration, motivation, and can easily get agitated and sometimes even depressed. The tongue has a major impact on the size and shape of the airway. If the mouth is too small for the size of the tongue, it can block the airway and we have the same problems mentioned above.
Improving the Size of Your Airway
So what determines the size of our airway and tongue? Genetics is always a big factor and one that we cannot control. There is evidence that weight gain can also lead to a fat tongue, which, along with fat deposits in the throat can compress the airway. We can try to control this through weight loss, although this can be hard when airway restriction makes it hard for you to get and stay active.
What we can control though is what surrounds the airway and the tongue, which are muscles, bones, and teeth. Using neuromuscular dentistry, I can move these three things around to create a bigger airway and more room for the tongue. A more open airway can make you a much healthier, happier, and more productive person with a longer life expectancy.
This is a game changer in the treatment of obstructive sleep apnea and other sleep-disordered breathing problems in that we are treating the source of the problem rather than offering a mechanical night-time only solution in the form of a CPAP machine or a dental device. This is not to diminish the important role of these treatments, but wouldn’t you rather have a nice airway and more room for your tongue 24/7 instead of night time only?
Are You Ready to Find Your Energy?
If you are constantly finding you just don’t have the energy for all the things you want to do, your airway may be to blame. And if that’s the case, we can help.