What obstructive sleep apnea treatment can a dentist recommend?

Obstructive sleep apnea is described as a common sleeping disorder that affects millions of Americans. Obstructive sleep apnea is diagnosed by physicians who then prescribe the use of a CPAP machine to address the problem. However, these devices are large, uncomfortable, and difficult to travel with. This is why Redmond Smiles in Washington encourages patients to seek oral appliance therapy as a potential alternative to CPAP in their dental offices.

Understanding sleep apnea

The common symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea, or OSA, include:

  • Loud snoring
  • Paused breathing during sleep
  • Daytime fatigue
  • Feeling Groggy

This condition occurs when the airways are blocked or collapses while sleeping, causing a disruption in oxygen intake. This often leads to a variety of health problems, such as low oxygen levels, high blood pressure, heart disease, and a shortened lifespan. 

Can children have sleep apnea, too?

Absolutely! That is why it is important for parents to be vigilant about noticing any changes in their children that are not normal for them, are worsening over time, or are not age-appropriate. Signs and symptoms to look for in children include:

  • Groggy children in the morning
  • Hyperactive children (ADHD-like symptoms)
  • Moody children
  • Wetting the bed beyond the appropriate age
  • Smaller children (growth not tracking)

Oral appliance therapy for sleep apnea

For patients who cannot tolerate or do not want to use the CPAP machine, oral appliance therapy can be an effective alternative sleep apnea solution. This treatment involves wearing a custom-made mouthpiece that fits over the upper and lower teeth. During sleep, it keeps the jaw in a forward position to keep airways open and reduce sleep apnea symptoms.

There are several advantages to oral appliances for sleep apnea, and they include:

  • Comfort. Unlike a CPAP machine, oral appliances are custom-made to fit the patient’s mouth and are designed for comfort. They do not require any external equipment or masks, making them more comfortable to wear during sleep.
  • Easy to use. Oral appliances are easy to use and do not require complex setup or maintenance like a CPAP machine. Patients simply need to insert the device before sleeping and remove it in the morning.
  • Portable. Oral appliances are small and compact, making them easy to travel with. This allows patients to continue their sleep apnea treatment even while away from home.

Take control of your obstructive sleep apnea today with the team at Redmond Smiles!

Redmond, Washington area patients faced with obstructive sleep apnea seeking a solution that doesn’t require using a CPAP machine are encouraged to speak to Drs. Colby Eckland and Lee Zamos about their options. Redmond Smiles is located at 15965 NE 85th Street, Suite #201, and is open to new patients who call (425) 584-1192 to schedule an appointment. The office serves those in and around Bellevue, Woodinville, Sammamish, and Kirkland, WA.