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Sleep Apnea Treatment – Stephens City, VA

Sleep Better. Breathe Better. Live Better.

About 22 million Americans suffer from sleep apnea, which is a condition where someone experiences brief but frequent lapses in breathing during sleep, ruining their sleep quality. If you believe that you might have this condition or if you’ve already been diagnosed, Dr. Gromling can offer you a conservative and effective solution in the form of oral appliance therapy. It’s comfortable, it’s safe, and it’s proven to help people with mild to moderate obstructive sleep apnea enjoy restful nights and energetic mornings.

Why Choose Thomas A. Gromling, DDS for Sleep Apnea Treatment?

  • Custom-made sleep appliances for every patient
  • Proven CPAP alternative
  • Can help stop snoring the very first night

What is Sleep Apnea?

Sleeping man with airway animation over profile

When we lay down to go to sleep, the tissues in our mouth and throat naturally relax. For some people, these tissues relax so much that they actually block the airway and stop breathing. The body reacts to this by partially waking up to restore normal respiration, and this can happen again and again throughout the night without someone realizing it. The result is that the sleep cycle is constantly being interrupted and cut short, preventing someone from getting the deep sleep they need to feel awake the next day.

The Dangers of Sleep Apnea

Frustrated man with head in hands

Chronic exhaustion is very common for people with sleep apnea simply because their body isn’t getting the rest it needs. This can lower a person’s quality of life dramatically, and it also makes them much more likely to get in a motor vehicle accident. Sleep apnea also causes a severe spike in blood pressure that can linger for many hours even after someone is breathing normally. This heightens the risk for conditions like stroke and heart attack. According to the American Sleep Apnea Association, about 35,000 cardiovascular-related deaths every year can be directly tied to sleep apnea.

Learn More About the Dangers of Sleep Apnea

Excessive Snoring

Snoring man in bed

Loud, persistent snoring is also a prominent symptom of sleep apnea. This occurs when the airway is only partially blocked, but it’s usually the precursor to full obstruction. Just because someone snores does not automatically mean that they have sleep apnea, but they are certainly at a higher risk of developing it in the future. Plus, snoring can be very, very disturbing to others, straining relationships in the process. Fortunately, the same solution Dr. Gromling offers for sleep apnea can also be used as an effective snoring treatment, leading to quieter nights for everyone.

An Alternative to CPAP: Oral Appliance Therapy

Traditionally, sleep apnea is treated with a CPAP machine, but over the last few years, oral appliance therapy has become much more popular. Instead of wearing a noisy air pump to bed, a patient simply wears a mouthpiece designed by Dr. Gromling. It slightly adjusts the lower jaw forward to keep the airway open throughout the night. He can provide a number of different oral appliances based on a patient’s particular needs:

Learn More About Oral Appliance Therapy


The Herbst consists of two thin guards that go over the top and bottom rows of teeth that are connected by two small, telescoping metal arms. It is a very light appliance that doesn’t take up much room in the mouth, and it allows a patient to maintain the full range of motion for their jaw.


ProSomnus sleep apnea appliance

ProSomnus appliances are some of the most popular on the market today. Made of high-quality plastic, they fit directly over the teeth and allow a patient to speak and drink normally while being worn, helping them slip seamlessly into any bedtime routine.

Partnered with the Winchester Area's Top Sleep Physicians

Diagnosis sleep apnea written on computer

In order to help our sleep apnea patients get the care they need, Dr. Gromling has teamed up with a network of trusted sleep physicians. He can point you to a sleep physician in your area who can give you a sleep test, which is necessary before receiving an oral appliance. Working closely with them, he can find the ideal treatment to help you finally get the rest you need. They’ll also collaborate on your follow-up care to ensure you’re enjoying long-term results.

Sleep Apnea FAQs

a woman resting and relaxing on a couch outside

Our team is more than happy to help those who are struggling to get the quality rest they need and deserve. By addressing issues like sleep apnea, you’ll allow your body to function at its peak performance. That said, there are a few things you’ll need to consider about this disorder and how to manage your situation before scheduling an appointment with us. To help you be well-informed, we’ve listed some of the most frequently asked questions we get from our patients about sleep apnea. Feel free to reach out to us if you don’t see the information you’re looking for!  

Does Everyone Who Snores Have Sleep Apnea?

Although this is one of the many possible symptoms of sleep apnea, it does not mean that everyone who snores has this disorder. Snoring happens whenever air vibrates the tissues in your throat when moving past them. If the tissues are loose, the airway narrows and can block the airway, reducing your ability to breathe properly and increasing your chance of sleep apnea. Though many people experience light snoring, those who snore heavily and frequently should seek help from a medical professional to determine if they have obstructed sleep apnea (OSA).

Can My Dentist Diagnose Sleep Apnea?

Since your dentist is technically a mouth expert, they’ll be able to detect signs and indications of sleep apnea. They might find problems in your throat that can contribute to breathing problems during rest. That said, they won’t be able to offer an official OSA diagnosis. Instead, they’ll refer you to a sleep physician who will perform the necessary testing to identify the issue. These tests are known as sleep studies, which involve using advanced machinery to monitor you as you sleep. The data created by the test can reveal if you have a sleep disorder and its severity. Afterward, you may be able to receive treatment for it from your dentist.

Can I Diagnose Sleep Apnea on My Own?

You will not be able to self-diagnose sleep apnea. To effectively diagnose the issue will involve machinery that only a sleep physician utilizes. Even so, you can still try monitoring your symptoms and the quality of your sleep, especially if you constantly feel like you don’t get enough rest. Try keeping a journal to track when you go to bed, how often you wake up in the middle of the night, and how you feel when you finally get up. Using a smartwatch to monitor your sleep quality is also beneficial, as your physician may be able to use the data to see if an official sleep test will be necessary.

Will My Sleep Apnea Go Away If I Lose Weight?

Obstructive sleep apnea can sometimes occur due to excessive fat around the neck area, which can end up constricting the airway and increase the risk of breathing issues while sleeping. Extra weight in the abdominal region can also contribute to OSA, making it more difficult to rest easily during the night. For this reason, those who are obese may be able to minimize or eliminate some of their symptoms by shedding some weight. Still, obesity is only one of the various factors that can lead to sleep apnea. If you’re experiencing symptoms of OSA, don’t hesitate to consult your dentist, as they can connect you with a sleep physician for help.

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