How Dentists Treat Sleep Apnea With Oral Appliance Therapy

Millions of adults have sleep apnea, a serious condition that inhibits breathing during the night and can raise the risk of high blood pressure and other issues like mood problems. However, there are ways to reat this ailment. Oral appliance therapy can help improve sleep apnea symptoms, sleep quality, and overall health.

What is Oral Appliance Therapy?

Oral appliance therapy is a treatment for snoring or other sleep destructive patterns. It involves patients wearing a removable oral appliance as they sleep each night. The device fits like a retainer or mouth guard does.

What If My Sleep Apnea Is Left Untreated?

Untreated Sleep Apnea can result in higher risk of even-more serious health problems such as:  High blood pressure, Stroke, Heart attack, Diabetes, Depression and anxiety, and dementia.

  • Are you tired (literally) of not getting a full, restful night of sleep?
  • Are you suffering from the symptoms of sleep apnea?
  • Has a doctor already diagnosed you with sleep apnea but CPAP treatment has been unsuccessful?

Capital Dental Can Help You

Our doctors are trained in the treatment of light to moderate sleep apnea. We offer our patients FDA approved alternatives to a CPAP and a custom oral appliance. This device is comfortable, lightweight, and portable.

How Does Oral Appliance Work? 

Worn only during sleep, oral appliance therapy works by positioning your jaw forward which increases the size of the upper airway, allowing for normal airflow to the lungs.

Oral Appliance Therapy Benefits:

  • Improved compliance compared to alternative treatments for sleep apnea (such as CPAP)
  • Device is portable, discreet, and comfortable
  • Most patient’s experience improved sleep right away
  • Reduced risk of health problems associated with untreated sleep apnea

What To Expect During Our Treatment:

  • If you suffer from any of the symptoms listed above, we first recommend you have a sleep study completed.  Sleep apnea is a medical condition that must be diagnosed by a medical provider. In order to be given a diagnosis and receive treatment a sleep study must be completed.
  • We offer a FREE health assessment to help determine if you may have sleep apnea.
  • If deemed at risk, we can order an at-home sleep study test, or you can have your medical physician refer you to a sleep-lab for testing.
  • We provide the sleep lab with your medical insurance information. All medical insurances can be billed except Kaiser. The sleep lab will call you with your co-pay. In the event that the sleep test is not covered, or if you remain uninsured, the cash fee is $250. If you agree to the co-pay and decide to proceed, the sleep lab sets an appointment for your sleep test kit to arrive.
  • At-home sleep study test: The home sleep study records your vital signs through the night. At bedtime, you connect the sensors as instructed and sleep in your own bed as usual. You must test for 2 nights in a row. You then package the kit in the provided, pre-labeled returned box and drop off at local post-office. Results come back in 3-5 days.
  • The sleep lab submits your sleep study results, along with a diagnosis to us and a recommendation for treatment. If you have light-moderate sleep apnea it can usually be treated with oral appliance therapy. In cases of severe sleep apnea, oral appliance therapy is not recommended.
  • If you choose to treat your sleep apnea with the recommend oral appliance, we will pre-authorize your medical insurance and inform you of your copay.
  • First appointment will be to take an impression for the device.
  • Impression is sent to the lab for fabrication of the device. Device is typically ready within three weeks.
  • Device delivery appointment is made. We ensure you know how to properly use the device and that it is fitting comfortably.
  • Two week follow up appointments are scheduled to adjust the device as needed and inquire on your current sleep verse your sleep prior to device.
  • 6 month follow up sleep study needs to be done to ensure device is working to treat your sleep apnea.
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