Obstructive sleep apnea affects around 20 million Americans and can lead to hypertension, heart attack, stroke, depression, muscle pain, fibromyalgia, morning headaches, and excessive daytime sleepiness.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Dental Sleep Medicine Offers Effective Alternatives to CPAP

An increasing number of dentists are becoming qualified in the specialized field of dental sleep medicine, which offers custom oral appliances as a comfortable and effective alternative to traditional continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) devices for the treatment of sleep apnea.

Although CPAP machines have proven capable of maintaining open airways as patients sleep, many people who suffer from sleep apnea find the masks uncomfortable and confining, and do not use the devices long-term. Oral appliances can often be a viable solution for those with sleep apnea who can’t tolerate CPAP.

Dental sleep medicine entails the assessment of sleep apnea symptoms, the selection of an appropriate oral appliance, the custom design and fitting of the device, and follow-up care. Sleep apnea oral appliances are custom-made to conform comfortably to your individual bite and are worn during sleep to maintain an unobstructed airway.

Similar in appearance to sports mouthguards, oral appliances keep your tongue in a forward position and help maintain proper jaw position as you sleep. Maintaining an open airflow as you sleep can eliminate snoring and other symptoms of sleep apnea.

Because there are a number of sleep apnea oral appliances on the market, only a thorough exam with a qualified sleep dentist can determine the best treatment option for you. If necessary, your dentist may collaborate with a sleep study center.

If you experience symptoms of sleep apnea, please contact IHateCPAP.com to locate a qualified sleep dentist near you.

posted by Anonymous at 8:42 AM