Oral Appliance Therapy
Those who suffer from sleep apnea may opt for the use of oral appliance therapy to alleviate symptoms of the disorder. Sleep apnea occurs when the muscles at the back of the throat do not function properly and cause the normal breathing patterns to be disturbed during sleep. My Dentist Friend offers oral appliance therapy to help patients get a restful night’s sleep by relieving symptoms of the sleep disorder. Sleep apnea can be a serious condition, and our team wants to help resolve your sleep problems.
What Is an Oral Appliance?
An oral appliance for sleep apnea is a hard, plastic mold that fixes onto the upper and lower dental arches. Two metal wires run between the upper and lower molds in order to push the bottom jaw in front of the upper jaw. This pushes the airways open and allows the patient to breathe properly, preventing the throat muscles from closing the pathway to the lungs. It is a simple but practical device, and many patients opt for this instead of other sleep apnea solutions. Our oral surgeons can fit an oral appliance that will snap onto the patient’s teeth comfortably. We take a mold of the patient’s teeth and send it to the dental lab. There, they will make an oral appliance that is based on the patient’s oral cavity.
Why Should I Have Oral Appliance Therapy?
Oral appliance therapy is a simple and easy solution for sleep apnea. When a patient suffers from the sleep disorder, an oral appliance is a non-invasive option to resolve the condition. An oral appliance is small, easy to travel with, and easy to store. Patients can travel with it and never have to worry about sleepless nights. Oral appliances are sturdy and do not break easily. They will last up to 5 years and can be cleaned easily.
The alternative to oral appliance therapy is a Continuous Positive Airway Pressure machine, or CPAP for short. These machines have a face mask that constantly applies air pressure to the patient while they sleep, alleviating the symptoms of sleep apnea, by making a consistent flow of air. CPAP machines can be loud, bulky, and difficult to sleep with. The mask is attached to a tube, making it difficult to get comfortable.
Comparatively, oral appliance therapy is relatively simple, and does not require any external machinery. Oral appliance therapy can sometimes cause soreness in both the jaw and teeth. Oral appliances can occasionally loosen synthetic teeth. If any of these side-effects are experienced, contact our office, and our professionals will be able to adjust your oral appliance to alleviate the complications. Oral appliance therapy accommodates most patients, but some with more severe cases of sleep apnea may find the oral appliance to be an unsuccessful treatment.
Our oral surgeons can talk our patients through the benefits of each form of treatment for sleep apnea and tell our patients which one best suits their needs. My Dentist Friend can help relieve your sleep apnea. Contact our office at 856-484-4114 to end your sleepless nights.