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Family Physician
Family Physician, Doctor
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 2592
Experience:  Emergency Medicine and Family Practice for over 26 years
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I have always had sleep apnea and was always a mouth

Customer Question

I have always had sleep apnea and was always a mouth breather due to allergies and nasal polyps. Anyway, I had the polyps remove and use prescription nasonex and am able to breathe through my nose 75% of the time.
I had orthodontic braces put on about 12 years ago top and bottom. The braces pulled my teeth inward. Ever since then I have bee waking up in the middle of the night gasping for air. Also, during the day, if I am not sitting up straight I am gasping for air. It's as if my tongue has no room. I cannot lie on my back or I have trouble breathing.
If it is a good day and I can breathe through my nose there is less of an issue. I am 52 years old and at wits end. Also the braces tremendously aggravated a Tmj and myofascial pain problem on my left side. I also have a reverse curve in my neck.
What can I do especially about having trouble breathing through the day?
I can't use c pap or bi pap. Even while drinking a big glass of juice I feel like I'm being water boarded. I am at wits end. What can be done to help me?
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Medical
Expert:  Dr. David replied 11 months ago.

this is Dr. David

you should see a pulmonologist who does sleep studies.

you could be having sleep apnea at night time worsened by your braces.

during the day, you could be having narrowing of your airway from your braces. ENT ear nose throat doctors can look down your throat and see how large your airway is and if it is close to being occluded.

do you have severe anxiety symptoms? anxiety can make you feel like you have tightness of your throat and difficulty breathing.

you may need to stop these orthodonic braces from tightening any more which seem to worsen your symptoms of breathing.

let me know if you have questions.