Talk to your dentist about a dental treatment for sleep apnea

dental treatment for sleep apneaSleep apena is a condition that causes sufferers to stop breathing for periods during the night. There are a variety of treatment methods for this problem, including CPAP machines, but dental treatment for sleep apnea could be an option for you.

Is a dental appliance right for me?

Dental treatment for sleep apnea involves the use of an oral appliance to help keep the breathing passage open. Oral appliance therapy is appropriate for those who suffer from mild to moderate levels of sleep apnea. Typically, it is prescribed for those who have an anatomical problem causing their obstruction.

For example, those with long tongues, scar tissue, enlarged tonsils or excess throat fat often benefit from oral appliance therapy. Those with severe problems should continue to use their CPAP machine and other appropriate treatments.

How is sleep apnea tested?

Before oral appliance therapy is prescribed, you will be evaluated by a sleep board in an overnight sleep study. As you sleep, your apnea will be gauged and carefully assessed to to identify its cause and severity. The evaluation should take no more than one or two sessions.

Are there other options?

If oral appliance therapy is not appropriate for your sleep apnea, there are other forms of dental therapy that can help. The most common of these includes surgery to clear your upper airway. For example, tonsillectomy, adenoidectomy and maxillofacial surgery can help clear your throat.

Whatever method you use, make sure to continue to use your CPAP machine if suggested by your doctor. Lying on your side while sleeping is another good idea, as it can help increase the effectiveness of your treatment.

To learn more, please contact us today.