Oral appliance therapy is a viable option for treating obstructive sleep apnea. The main culprit in Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) is the soft tissue of the throat and tongue occlude the trachea. This prevents air from entering the lungs.
A Mandibular Advancement Device (MAD) is worn during sleep. It is custom made and maintains the lower jaw in a forward position. This jaw position allows the airway to be kept open. When used correctly, mild sleep apnea can be minimized and even eliminated.
Advantages of Oral Appliance Therapy
There are many distinct benefits of wearing a MAD for sleep apnea, these include the fact that they’re:
- Allow for unlimited sleeping positions
- Easy to wear
- Easy to care for
- Not dependent on electricity like a CPAP
For some patients, an oral appliance can be an alternative to continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machines.
Drs. West and Nugent, can get your screened easily for sleep apnea. They can order a home sleep test to screen you. The test is read by a board certified sleep physician. The sleep physician will indicated if a MAD will be appropriate therapy. If you have already been diagnosed with sleep apnea and want a MAD, our dentists will work with physicians. Most medical doctors do not know the advantages os a MAD as they most likely only know about the CPAP. However, some patients can physically tolerate a CPAP machine. This is where Dr. West and Nugent can take over you sleep apnea care.
After conducting a complete clinical evaluation, including an examination of your airway, tongue, teeth and jaw, our dentist sends models and impressions of your teeth to a dental lab, where your appliance is made.
When your MAD is ready, you’ll visit us for a fitting. If any adjustments are needed they will be made. The appliance should be comfortable. Patients are shown how to maintain and to clean the MAD. After a couple of weeks of titration you will be scheduled in for a sleep study to ensure your treatment is successful.
We will also schedule follow up visits to check your appliance, and to make adjustments to ensure the long-term success of your treatment.
Oral appliance therapy outlook
With successful oral appliance sleep apnea therapy, you can begin to live your life again free from symptoms. Your quality of life can be dramatically improved when you are getting a constant rejuvenating sleep.
If you concerned that you may have sleep apnea, and live near Pasadena, contact our office today at 832-487-0647. The health risks of sleep apnea are devastating.