Sleep Apnea Treatment

All About OSA

Sleep Apnea Treatment in Montgomery County, MD

The Maryland Center for Sleep Surgery provides comprehensive treatment for obstructive sleep apnea to patients in Rockville, Silver Spring, Germantown, Gaithersburg, Olney, and the surrounding region.

So what exactly is obstructive sleep apnea and why should it matter to you?

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What is Sleep Apnea?

Airway Collapses

Normally, your airway stays open when you sleep. With OSA, the muscles that keep the airway open, like your tongue and soft palate, relax and cause your throat to close.

Oxygen Drops

As the airflow to your lungs stops, the oxygen level of your blood begins to drop. This is one of the reasons OSA increases risk for heart disease and stroke.

Brain Wakes Up

When your oxygen drops low enough (and your CO2 level consequently increases), your brain triggers your body to wake up so your airway can open again.

Fall Asleep Again

When your brain wakes up, you begin to hyperventilate to increase your oxygen and decrease your CO2. Once your levels return to normal, your brain lets you fall back asleep.

One time through this cycle is called an apnea (or the less intense version, hypopnea). This cycle could be happening hundred of times per night for some people.

What Causes Sleep APnea?

There are many risk factors that contribute to someone developing obstructive sleep apnea. The following are a few important conditions that increase the likelihood of sleep apnea.

Excess Weight

Weight gain is a well known cause of obstructive sleep apnea. On the other hand, losing weight can significantly improve sleep apnea.

Bone Structure

The structure of some people’s upper and lower jaw can lead to sleep apnea, even if they are a normal weight.

Being Male

Men are 2-3x more likely to develop obstructive sleep apnea, although women start to catch up after menopause.

What If it’s untreated?

Quality of Life

Daytime Fatigue

Many (but not all) people with OSA feel excessively tired during the day, including a high frequency of falling asleep in various situations.

Poor Concentration

Poor sleep quality from frequent awakenings at night (whether or not you are aware of them) may lead to poor attention and concentration.

Headaches & Irritability

OSA can cause a variety of other symptoms including morning headache, irritability, dry mouth, sore throat, depression, and anxiety.

Health Risks 

Heart Disease

The repeated drops in oxygen can lead to a variety of heart conditions including high blood pressure, atrial fibrillation (arrhythmia), and heart failure. If you already have these conditions, there is even more reason to treat your OSA.


Decreased oxygen supply to the brain at night and increased blood pressure both contribute to an elevated risk of sudden stroke.


Excessive sleepiness and poor attention during the day leads to a significantly increased risk of accidents when driving or operating heavy machinery.


Continuous Positive Pressure (CPAP)

CPAP is a mask that fits over the nose or face to gently provide air pressure to keep your airway open at night.

Inspire Therapy

Inspire therapy provides gentle stimulation to your tongue while you sleep to keep your airway open while you breathe. Learn more…


Palate Surgery

Palate surgery involves removing the tonsils or reorienting the muscles in the back of the throat to keep your airway open.


Oral Appliance

An oral appliance is a type of mouth guard that stabilizes the lower jaw to prevent it from falling backwards at night.


Double Jaw Advancement

Double jaw advancement is a procedure that moves both the upper and lower jaw slightly forward to create space.


Positional Therapy

Positional therapy involves a wide range of products that keep your head or body in optimal position while you sleep.

How is Sleep Apnea Treated?

When it comes to obstructive sleep apnea, no single treatment is right for everyone. Some people may even require a combined approach.

How do I know if I have obstructive sleep apnea?

If you think you or a loved one may suffer from obstructive sleep apnea, you should see your doctor who may order an overnight sleep study. The results of a sleep study can tell you if you have OSA and how severe it is.

Which treatment option is best for me?

The best treatment for each person depends on many factors including the cause of their sleep apnea, their head and neck anatomy, and their personal preferences. Dr. Hobelmann can help you find which option is best for you.

Can obstructive sleep apnea be cured?

With proper treatment, it is possible to eliminate the daytime symptoms like fatigue and poor concentration and significantly reduce the health risks that come with OSA like the risk of heart disease and stroke.

Will losing weight help my sleep apnea?

Absolutely! Dropping even 10-15 lbs can make a noticeable difference. If you have sleep apnea and you are overweight, losing weight can significantly improve your symptoms.

Where can I learn more?

Schedule an appointment with Dr. Hobelmann to learn more about the underlying causes of sleep apnea and the many treatment options that are available.

Frequently Asked Questions