When people think about the ways to treat sleep apnea, they may think they need some type of machine to help them breathe. A CPAP machine helps produce positive pressure for a person breathing while they sleep.
That positive pressure helps keep the airway open. While it is one way to treat sleep apnea, there is another way that is easier to use and that is often just as effective. That treatment method is an oral appliance.
The Different Types There are different types of oral appliances. Each work to resolve the issues of sleep apnea in a different way. One type of oral appliance adjusts the position of the lower jaw by moving it forward. This helps keep the airway open. Other appliances work to hold the tongue forward to prevent it from blocking the airway. Some oral appliances use a combination of techniques to keep the airways open. Determining what type of oral appliance, you need requires figuring out what causes your sleep apnea.
Making the Oral Appliance
While it is possible to buy a generic oral appliance, that is not the best way to try to resolve the problems of sleep apnea. The fit of the appliance plays a large role in how effective it is. Making a custom fit real appliance requires making a mold in our dental office.
Plaster molds are the most common, but it is also possible to create a digital image of the teeth and the bite of the individual to create a proper fitting oral appliance. The plaster mold of the bite allows our dental professionals to determine what types of adjustments the oral appliance needs to make to keep the airway open.
The oral appliance is made from the molds we create and once the appliance is ready, we help fit it into your mouth and help you learn how to use it properly. An oral appliance offers a treatment for sleep apnea that is easy for a person to use no matter where they are. It is portable and you can use it anywhere.
For more information about this or any other oral health issue, contact our office to schedule an appointment.