Dr. Ashley Spooner
Dr. Spooner is a Diplomate of the American Board of Sleep Medicine and an active member of the American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine, American Dental Association, Colorado Dental Association, and Metro Denver Dental Society. She practices general dentistry and treats qualified obstructive sleep apnea patients with oral appliance therapy.
Approach to care
Dr. Spooner and her team offer comprehensive care that focuses on underlying causes as well as solutions. Overwhelming research links oral health with overall health. We call this The Mouth-Body Connection®, and we take this into account in screening patients and providing appropriate treatment for sleep apnea.
What is Sleep Apnea?
Sleep Apnea is a potentially serious sleep disorder where breathing to repeatedly stop and start during sleep. There are several types of sleep apnea, but the most common is obstructive sleep apnea. This occurs when the throat muscles intermittently relax and block the airway during sleep. A noticeable sign of obstructive sleep apnea is snoring.
What are Common Symptoms of Sleep Apnea?
- Abrupt awakenings caused by gasping or choking
- Chronic loud snoring (most common symptom)
- Difficulty concentrating/limited attention span
- Disrupted breathing
- Excessive daytime sleepiness
- Morning dry mouth or sore throat
- Morning headache
What Risks Are Associated with Sleep Apnea?
Interrupted sleep is an obvious nuisance, but the risks associated with sleep apnea can lead to physical, mental, and emotional problems, as well. Sleep apnea affects oxygen balance in the body, which raises the risk of cardiovascular issues such as high blood pressure, heart attack, heart disease and stroke.
How is Sleep Apnea Diagnosed?
Dr. Spooner will complete a Sleep Wellness Exam to help you understand what sleep apnea is and will include a comprehensive evaluation to determine if further screening is recommended. The next steps for diagnosis are a sleep study where she works with local sleep physicians to help you navigate the process toward better sleep. We know that having multiple providers to manage your health can be confusing and time consuming. Our goal is to help your journey toward better sleep be efficient, collaborative, and cost effective. Dr. Spooner and her team are committed to guiding their patients through this process and can provide sleep studies to take home. This allows for cost-effective and efficient diagnosis by a local board-certified sleep physician. Dr. Spooner receives your diagnostic information and will collaborate with your care team and the sleep physician to determine your personalized treatment plan. Our team will be with you throughout your journey toward better sleep and will always collaborate with your other providers with the goal of helping you be healthier and happier.
Treatment for Sleep Apnea
Treatments for sleep apnea may include:
Oral appliance therapy can be an effective alternative to CPAP for patients who are unable to tolerate CPAP therapy, and in cases of mild to moderate obstructive sleep apnea. It is small, portable, and doesn’t involve masks and tubes. It can also be used in combination with CPAP to help reduce high pressures and make CPAP therapy more comfortable for those with severe apnea who require high pressures to support the airway.