DEAR DOCTOR K: I have sleep apnea, and I don't particularly like the CPAP treatment. I've heard that night guards might be an effective alternative. What can you tell me?
DEAR READER: One way or another, getting treatment for sleep apnea is really important. Untreated, sleep apnea increases your risk for high blood pressure, stroke and early death. The airways of people with obstructive sleep apnea narrow as they sleep, and air struggles to get through. People with this condition may breathe shallowly or stop breathing several times an hour.