Is oral appliance safe for sleep apnea?

FDA has provided clearance for more than 100 oral appliances for sleep apnea treatment. This clearance ensures that oral appliances have undergone rigorous testing for safety and effectiveness. Moreover, the American Academy of Sleep Medicine recommends oral tools as primary therapy to treat mild to moderate obstructive sleep apnea. They are also recommended for patients with severe sleep apnea who can't tolerate CPAP treatment.

Why should I get my sleep apnea treated?

Sleep apnea is a silent epidemic. It is essential to get your sleep apnea treated. If left untreated, it leads to chronic health diseases like memory loss, diabetes, high blood pressure, congestive heart failure, coronary artery disease, and stroke. It has also been identified as a common cause of traffic accidents related to drowsy driving.

How are oral appliances designed?

Dr.Adatrow would design a customized oral appliance for you by recording digital and physical impressions and teeth models. These models will be sent to a dental lab to fabricate the oral device. When the oral appliance is completed, you can return to our office for appliance fitting. Dr. Adatrow and our dental team will adjust the device to optimize its effectiveness and comfort. Our dental team will also provide you instructions about the maintenance and care of the appliance.

What are the care instructions for sleep apnea appliance?

We recommend you brush and floss your teeth before wearing the device every night. Plaque tends to build upon your device, so make sure to wash the mouthguard daily, also dry your device after washing. You can clean your device with a soft soap or mild toothpaste and a soft toothbrush.

What are the types of oral appliances for sleep apnea?

There are different types of oral appliances used for treating sleep apnea. Most commonly used are Mandibular Advancement Devices (MAD) or Mandibular Repositioning Appliances (MRA).

How to treat sleep apnea?

Sleep apnea treatment depends on the severity and type of apnea:
  • For mild to moderate cases - behavioral modification along with oral appliance might be a primary treatment. The oral appliance will be used to position the lower jaw so that there is no throat blockage (air-tract).
  • The behavioral change will involve advising the patient to lose weight, avoid smoking, and optimize the sleeping position.
  • In severe cases - continuous positive airway pressure (cpap) therapy will be advised.
  • In extreme cases – the surgery might be recommended.

How do oral appliances treat sleep apnea?

Oral appliances reposition your lower in a forward position than its original position. This positions your tongue so that the tongue does not fall back and block your airway; thus, your airway will be free of physical blockage, and there will be less snoring.

What are the instructions to be followed after receiving the device (post-operative instructions)?

You are wearing a new device in your mouth. So, with anything new, you have a break-in duration or adjustment period.
  1. During the initial ten days, you might notice an increase in salivation.
  2. In the first week, you might experience tightness or discomfort in your jaw in the mornings. This is temporary and should reduce after a few minutes. However, if you notice that pain is severe or persistent, please call our office immediately.
  3. During the initial stages, you might notice some awkwardness or discomfort while closing your teeth to your usual position. This is usually self-correcting in a few minutes. However, if you see a drastic change in your bite or jaw position, please call our office immediately.
  4. Please follow all the care instructions for the device provided by our dental team.
  5. You must keep up with all your follow-up visits to ensure good health and effectiveness of the device. Dr. Adatrow and our dental team will provide you with all the instructions and inform you about follow-up visit dates.
  6. Make sure you store your anti-snoring device away from the reach of children or pets.

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