Oral Appliance Therapy for Obstructive Sleep Apnea
March 18, 2021
Category: Oral Health

Could a simple dental device help you get your sleep apnea symptoms under control?

Have you been diagnosed with Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA)? Does your partner complain of sleep apneayour uncontrollably loud snoring night after night? Sleep apnea impacts about 22 million Americans, and unfortunately, research suggests that as many as 24 million Americans have this problem but don’t even know it. As sleep apnea can have a serious impact on your health, you must talk with Montclair, NJ, award-winning dentist Dr. Paul Dionne about how dental sleep medicine may be able to manage your sleep apnea symptoms.

Why does sleep apnea require treatment?

Sleep apnea occurs when there are pauses in breathing throughout the night. These pauses can last anywhere from a few seconds to a couple of minutes. Having five or more apnea episodes per hour may be enough for an OSA diagnosis. A sleep study is the best way to diagnose whether a person may have sleep apnea.

Untreated sleep apnea can increase your risk for serious health problems, which is why it’s important to seek proper treatment and medical care if you think you might have it. Along with the miserable exhaustion, decrease in work productivity, and increase in accidents and injuries that come along with having this condition, untreated sleep apnea can also increase your risk for:

  • Heart attack
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Stroke
  • Diabetes
  • Heart arrhythmias
  • High blood pressure

According to the American Sleep Apnea Association, people with sleep apnea are also 3 times more likely to die prematurely. So, if you have obstructive sleep apnea, or you’re experiencing symptoms, it’s important that you talk with your doctor and get evaluated by a medical professional immediately.

How can a dentist help with sleep apnea?

While CPAP therapy is one of the most common types of treatment options for patients living with sleep apnea, it isn’t the only option.

Dr. Dionne is a member of the American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine (AADSM). He’s undergone specialized training and a residency program on the treatment of Obstructive Sleep Apnea and helps many patients living in and around Montclair, NJ, get their sleep apnea under control through dental sleep medicine. Dr. Dionne has helped many individuals manage mild to moderate sleep apnea through simple oral appliance therapy alone. This custom dental device fits over the upper and lower teeth like a mouthguard and is worn while sleeping, as it helps reposition the jaws to keep airways open throughout the night.

Oral appliance therapy can be used for mild, moderate, and severe sleep apnea symptoms. It can also be used in conjunction with current CPAP therapy with patients whose sleep apnea symptoms are so severe or unresponsive that CPAP alone isn’t enough. In this case, oral appliance therapy may help with significant improvements in sleep apnea symptoms and a drastic boost in restorative sleep.

Are you interested in sitting down with our Montclair, NJ, sleep apnea dentist Dr. Dionne at Glen Ridge Dental Arts to discuss oral appliance therapy? If you are interested in what dental sleep medicine can do for your health and wellbeing, call us at (973) 748-7790 to schedule an evaluation.