Treating Sleeping Apnea With Oral Appliance
At Indy Center for Sleep Health, our practices specialize in fitting patients with a custom fabricated oral appliance to manage sleep apnea. The appliance works by holding your mandible (lower jaw) in a precise open and forward position, and by doing so, all the soft tissues in your throat and neck are no longer able to collapse and cause the nighttime choking and suffocating episodes.
The appliance we make is customized for your teeth and will fit much like a sports mouthguard. Oral appliances are a very comfortable and easy-to-use solution for managing sleep apnea and snoring, and they are also an excellent alternative to CPAP therapy.
In 2015 the American Academy of Sleep Medicine issued updated practice parameters for treating sleeping disorders. The recommendations include the use of custom fabricated oral appliances made by specially trained dentists for patients with snoring and sleep apnea who prefer the mouthpiece over CPAP or who have tried CPAP and are unable to continue daily use.
CPAP is the traditional gold standard for the management of sleep apnea. CPAP stands for Continuous Positive Air Pressure, and it works by pumping room air through a hose into a nasal mask that is strapped to the patient's head. Constant pressure in the airway pushes the collapsible tissues out of the way and maintains and open/stable airway.
While highly effective at managing sleep apnea, CPAP has proven to be difficult to tolerate for many patients, and a large majority of CPAP users are “non-compliant” within 6-months. If you have a hard time wearing your CPAP every night, there are other options, and it is imperative that you do something to manage your OSA.
Oral Appliance Good Option For
- People with Primary Snoring
- People with mild to moderate or severe apnea
- People who cannot tolerate the high pressure of CPAP
- People with healthy disease free teeth
- People who want to travel without having to bring a CPAP machine
- Easy to wear and comfortable to use
- Small, noiseless and barely noticeable
- Convenient to travel with
- Don’t bother bed partners
- Reduce self-consciousness that many reports feeling with CPAP use.
- Non-permanent, use can be discontinued anytime
- Typically covered by medical insurance and medicare
Testing & Monitoring
Most people are great candidates for an oral appliance. We will provide you complimentary consultation at our office. We will test your airway using our Eccovision Acoustic Diagnostic Imaging system, and we may also send you home with a portable sleep apnea monitor. Once everything is reviewed, the doctor will discuss treatment options with you.
FDA Standard Oral Appliances
These devices are manufactured to strict standards and are FDA cleared specifically to manage Sleep Apnea. Additionally, we use state-of-the-art acoustic imaging technology to ensure your jaw is held in precisely the correct position with the appliance.