Last month, Dr. Roger Roubal spoke at a continuing education conference for Creighton University. The conference was held on November 13, and it was dedicated to educating primary care doctors, nurses, and other healthcare providers about sleep apnea.
Dr. Roubal sees speaking engagements as being a vital part of the mission of the Advanced Dental Sleep Treatment Center. There are three barriers of ignorance between the majority of sleep apnea sufferers and their treatment, and Dr. Roubal seeks to break them down through a wide-ranging campaign of public education.
Barrier #1: People Don’t Know about Sleep Apnea
The first barrier people face is that they don’t know the condition exists. Even once a person hears about the condition, they often do not understand the seriousness of it. This prevents them from recognizing the symptoms of sleep apnea and talking to their doctor about it, which is why 80% or more of sleep apnea sufferers remain undiagnosed.
TV news spots are ideal for spreading awareness about the condition.
Barrier #2: Doctors Don’t Consider Sleep Apnea
Even if people don’t know much about sleep apnea, they should be able to rely on their doctor’s expert knowledge to pick up on the symptoms of sleep apnea and recommend a sleep test. But many doctors don’t think about sleep apnea when considering the symptoms of their patients. This can lead to misdiagnosis of sleep apnea as depression, low testosterone, or other conditions with overlapping symptoms.
The continuing education conference was ideal to help break down this barrier: Dr. Roubal was talking directly to primary care providers, who are in an ideal position to put the pieces together and solve the puzzle of sleep apnea.
Barrier #3: Few Realize That There Are Treatment Options
Once people are properly diagnosed with sleep apnea, their treatment choices are often hemmed in because the doctor may not understand all the options.
Although it is generally agreed that it is best to start with CPAP for most patients, it is not the only treatment, and if it doesn’t work, people with sleep apnea and their doctors need to understand that there are many other options to try.
When Dr. Roubal speaks, whether he’s being interviewed on the news or talking to doctors, he emphasizes the treatment options that might have been overlooked, including oral appliances and Tap-Pap.
If you want to learn more about sleep apnea treatment in the Omaha area, please call (402) 493-4175 today for an appointment at the Advanced Dental Sleep Treatment Center.