M. Patrick Pedlar, BSc, DDS, MSD, FRCD(C)
Restoring and Maintaining the Natural Appearance of Teeth
310 Plains Rd E,
Burlington, ON L7T 4J2
(905) 632-1882

Sleep Apnea

Are you drowsy during the day with no explanation? Do you snore loudly or wake up breathless in the middle of the night? If you're experiencing any of these symptoms, you may be one of more than 10 million Canadians who are affected by sleep apnea.

There are different types of sleep apnea:

Sleep apnea is a multi-factorial syndrome related to physical influences during formative years, physical predetermined genetic development and environmental influences. 

What are the signs of sleep apnea?

The following symptoms can indicate the presence of sleep apnea. If you notice one or more of these, contact our practice.

  • Insomnia or difficulty sleeping
  • Loud snoring at night
  • Waking up at night short of breath
  • Snorting or choking sounds during the night (indicating a restart of breathing)
  • Headaches upon waking in the morning
  • Falling asleep unintentionally during the day
  • Extreme drowsiness throughout the day

Are there different types of sleep apnea?

There are three categories of sleep apnea. The most common is called obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), and occurs due to a physical blockage, usually the collapsing of the soft tissue in the back of the throat. Less common is central sleep apnea (CSA), in which breathing stops because the muscles involved don't receive the proper signal from the brain. And some people suffer from "mixed" or "complex" sleep apnea, which is a combination of obstructive and central.

What are risk factors for sleep apnea?

Obstructive sleep apnea is more common in males than females, and more common in older adults (40+) than younger adults and children. However, anyone — regardless of gender or age — can suffer from sleep apnea. Other risk factors include obesity, smoking, drinking, use of sedatives or tranquilizers, and family history. Central sleep apnea strikes most often in people with heart disorders, neuromuscular disorders, strokes, or brain tumors.

Is sleep apnea dangerous?

Sleep apnea is considered a serious medical problem and if left untreated it can lead to high blood pressure, increasing the risk of heart failure and stroke. The ongoing state of fatigue caused by sleep apnea can lead to problems at work or school, as well as danger when driving or operating heavy machinery. Sleep apnea can also cause complications with medication or surgery; sedation by anesthesia can be risky, as can lying flat in bed after an operation. If you know or suspect you suffer from sleep apnea, let your family doctor know before taking prescribed medication or having surgery.

How is sleep apnea treated?

Treatments for sleep apnea depend on the severity of each individual case, and the type of apnea. Basic treatment can be behavioral — for instance, patients are instructed to lose weight, stop smoking, or sleep on their sides instead of on their backs. Beyond that, oral devices can be used to position the mouth in such a way that prevents throat blockage. In more severe cases, surgery may be the best option.

What should I do if I suspect that someone in my family suffers from sleep apnea?

Contact our practice, and we can refer you to a sleep apnea specialist. The specialist may recommend a sleep study to diagnose the precise extent of the problem, and can prescribe appropriate treatment. Depending on your situation, treatment may involve an oral device that we can custom-create for you.

Patient Testimonials

It is a pleasure going to the dentist when it is Dr. Pedlar. I know his credentials are A 1 and his diagnosis are accurate and his work is always excellent. I have been a patient of Dr. Larry Pedlar and now Dr. Patrick Pedlar for many years. The offices are pristine and follow all the present day guidelines. The staff are wonderful , caring , efficient and excellent. I always recommend them when asked in my present circumstances at LaSalle retirement home.

-Janice D.

I am delighted with the quality of the service I receive on every visit! Perhaps even more important is the fact I feel truly 'cared for' from the moment I walk into the beautifully appointed, comfortable office and with every person in the practice. Everyone I have introduced to this wonderful health care team has been well treated, and I am very happy to stay with this kind, professional team. Thank you for years as my trusted health partner! I have a wonderful smile as proof of your great skill!

-Laura L.

I trust Dr. Pedlar and his team to provide exceptional care. The advice and treatment I have received are always accurate. I never have to return for the same issue twice. Thank you. I highly recommend this dental practice.

-Lynn C.

So impressed with how well you all have adapted to COVID in re-fitting your offices and procedures. Incredibly professional and thorough but I would expect nothing less from your team, as it's been my experience with the Pedlar group for the past 50 years. PS: Marlene as always did a great job.

-Rob M.

Office Hours

  • Monday7:00am – 1:00pm
  • Tuesday1:00pm – 7:00pm
  • Wednesday7:00am – 1:00pm
  • Thursday1:00pm – 7:00pm
  • Friday8:00am – 1:00pm (Alternating)
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