Dr. Steven Boe and Dr. Stephen Page recently attended a meeting of the American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine, in Orlando, FL. The focus of this meeting was on current thinking, treatment modalities and new research developments in the science of Medical and Dental Sleep Medicine. The meeting in Advanced Dental Sleep Medicine took place on November 7th and 8th, 2015.
The meeting featured lectures from research Neurologists, Sleep Physicians, Pulmonologists and Dental Sleep Specialist. The topics provided insight into understanding mechanisms of sleep fragmentation and its effects on systemic health and quality of life and treating Obstructive Sleep Apnea through a collaborative approach.
Dr. Page states that there was a considerable breakthrough in the understanding of how the brain flushes out byproducts of our daily life through a recently identified mechanism called, glymphatics. The glymphatic system (or glymphatic clearance pathway) is a functional waste clearance pathway for the mammalian central nervous system (CNS). This system is only activated in Stage III and Stage IV sleep. If we do not get enough sleep during these stages, there is thought there is an acceleration of brain atrophy and a cognitive demise.
The bottom line is that it is very important to achieve good, quality, non-fragmented sleep every night. Just sleeping longer does not help, if there are obstructions or arousals during our deeper sleep. Research is continuing with improved technology, thus allowing better understanding of this heavily overlooked issue of Sleep Apnea.