Can’t Sleep? How Can Your Dentist Help?

Oral Appliance Therapy for Sleep Problems

Getting a good night’s sleep is important to be able to function well during the day. Thinking clearly and being able to concentrate while at work or school is essential to success. Sleep problems can make you feel miserable and always tired. Instead of continuing to drag through your days, a dentist can help you sleep better with a customized oral appliance for sleep apnea. 


Why You Should Deal with Sleep Apnea

It is easy to think that sleep apnea is just a case of insomnia and snoring. You feel tired most of the time and conclude that you just have to live with it. Unfortunately, there is a much more serious side effect if it is not treated. Side effects of it include a greater risk of diabetes, high blood pressure, a heart attack, heart disease, a stroke, and you may also die from it. 


Alternatives to CPAP Machines

If you have already tried a CPAP machine and found that it does not work well for you, you may want to try an oral appliance for sleep apnea. These devices come in several types and are used to correct several possible causes of sleep apnea. When fitted correctly, they can be used in place of a CPAP machine, or may even be a substitute for surgery. 

The dental appliance for sleep apnea can be used in patients that have a mild or moderate case of sleep apnea. The sleep apnea mouthpiece is designed to stop snoring and to improve your breathing through the night, enabling you to get a better night’s rest. 


Types of Dental Appliances

Dental appliances offer a quality sleep apnea treatment that enables patients to start enjoying restful sleep. It works because the devices reduce the problem of snoring simply by separating the parts of the mouth and throat that cause it. When you have sleep apnea, the tissue in your throat relaxes enough to partially (or completely) block your airways. 

There are three different types of oral appliances to help you sleep. They include:

  • Mandibular Advancement Devices (MAD) – This device is used more than the other types of devices. It causes the airway to remain open by bringing the lower jaw forward. Since the tongue is attached to it, it keeps it out of the way, too. 
  • Tongue Retaining Devices (TRD) – This device focuses just on the tongue. It pulls it forward so that it cannot block the airway. Unlike the MAD device, it does not move the jaw at all.
  • Combination CPAP/Dental Sleep Device Therapy – One of the reasons that people do not like the CPAP machine is because of the higher air pressure. A special dental sleep device can be made to work with your CPAP machine, allowing it to be attached directly to your dental device. When used in conjunction with it, lower pressures can be used which will make it more comfortable for the user. 


Advantages of a Sleep Apnea Mouthpiece 

A sleep apnea mouthpiece offers a quality solution for those who love the outdoors. The device frees people with sleep apnea of always having to be near an electrical outlet to plug in their CPAP machine. It is also much easier to carry, and it has no equipment to get tangled up in while you sleep. You also cannot knock it off as you sleep. Another positive aspect is that insurance may pay for it, especially if it has already paid for a CPAP machine, which did not work well for the patient. 

Treating your sleep apnea with a dental sleep device will enable most people to get better sleep. This is largely because the device is more tolerable than having to wear a CPAP device. Once you start getting better sleep, you will notice that you have more energy and are more alert during the day – letting you enjoy your day more. You will also be aware that it will reduce your health risks, too. 


Custom Fit Devices

Prior to actually getting a device, the patient will need to go and perform a sleep study. This will reveal to the dentist the severity of your sleep apnea, enabling the device to best suit your needs. When made at a dentist’s office, the dental appliance is custom-designed to fit comfortably. It is made by first taking an impression of your teeth, and then sent to a lab to make it out of acrylic. Depending on the device, once it is received at the dentist’s office, it is further adjusted to provide you with the excellent fit you need. 

You can get a custom-made dental appliance for sleep apnea in the Carrollton, TX , Grapevine, TX, Dallas TX or Cedar Hill TX area, from Dr. Kumar T. Vadivel, DDS, FDS RCS, MS, a Board Certified Periodontist. In addition to many forms of dentistry, he has helped many people sleep better and enjoy a better quality of life. You can contact his office today at (214) 731-0123 for more information or to set up a consultation.