Most people seek the help of their primary care physician when they are suffering from sleep apnea. There are many things your dentist can do to improve your condition as well.

Many patients are prescribed a continuous positive airway pressure therapy device or CPAP therapy device. It can be difficult for patients to be compliant with this type of treatment. Many patients complain they develop new conditions, such as:

  • Claustrophobia
  • Dry nasal passages
  • Skin irritation
  • Intolerance of the pressurized air

There are a number of reasons people do not follow through with using their CPAP machine, but avoiding all treatment could be very dangerous.

Alternative Treatments

In cases of sleep apnea that are not considered severe, there are alternative treatments and your dentist may be able to provide you with a more comfortable alternative to the CPAP machine. Oral dental appliances have proven to be very effective in milder forms of sleep apnea.

Oral Dental Appliances for Sleep Apnea

The approach to treating sleep apnea through dental appliances greatly depends on the type of sleep apnea the patient has. Here are the most common treatments for sleep apnea.

For approved cases, a device known as a dentofacial orthopedic device can assist in reducing the incidence of sleep apnea. They can be used in children as young as 2 years of age and can assist in reducing symptoms.

Some patients benefit from using mandibular repositioning devices, as well as tongue-retaining devices.

Qualifying for a Dental Appliance for Sleep Apnea

Not all sleep apnea patients achieve relief from their symptoms using a dental appliance. However, a large percentage of patients are provided relief without facing the use of an uncomfortable CPAP machine.

In order to qualify for a dental appliance to treat your sleep apnea, you will need to have a sleep study performed to determine how severe your symptoms are. Severe cases of sleep apnea will still need to be treated with a CPAP machine to prevent severe symptoms that could lead to serious emergency situations.

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