Sleep Apnea Dental appliances are excellent choices for treating snoring, as well as mild to moderate sleep apnea patients. Likewise, there are several choices and styles that can be tailored to your specific needs and comfort requirements. Dental appliances function in two basically ways. They act as mandibular repositioners to reposition the lower jaw forward. Since the base of the tongue and mandible is attached by a muscle, the genioglosus, which goes from the base of the tongue and attaches to the inside of the chin as the mandible is pulled forward it also pulls the tongue forward, but in addition, advances the entire front wall of the throat forward opening the airway.
One dental device, The O 2 OASYS Oral/Nasal Airway System™ invented by Dr. Abramson while it acts as a mandibular repositioner it acts in an additional way as a nasal dilator. The O 2 OASYS Oral/Nasal Airway System™ is the first dental device to have this dual action. In a recent research paper using another dental device it was found that the most important factor in patients who didn’t respond to oral appliance therapy was nasal airway resistance. In a paper using the O 2 OASYS Oral/Nasal Airway System™ it was found that the device opened the nasal airway significantly. Depending on a sleep apnea patient’s anatomy, either of these two benefits may be helpful..
A Sleep Apnea dental appliance is custom fit for a sleep apnea patient, and then the patient wears this during sleep. By opening the airway’s diameter, obstruction is reduced, and sleep apnea conditions improve or resolve. Overall, the effectiveness for mild to moderate Sleep Apnea Syndrome is as high as 70% and the new practice parameters of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine recognize oral appliance treatment as first line treatment for mild to moderate sleep apnea and as second line treatment for severe apneics who fail CPAP.
The dental appliances are well accepted as treatment and studies have shown that oral appliance therapy is significantly preferred by patients. There are some getting used to this foreign object in one’ mouth at night with muscle achiness, some dental achiness. Overall, dental appliances are a very good option for treating Sleep Apnea Syndromes.
The best scenario is to have a free open airway all night long and sleep with ease. If one has a dysfunctioning airway and needs a prosthesis to maintain the airway while on is asleep they oral appliances are the preferred treatment for most patients.