Sleep apnea is now a common issue and most of the people prefer oral appliances to surgeries to treat OSA and snoring problem.
FREMONT, CA: Sleep apnea is a potential sleep disorder in which a person suffers an interruption in breathing process while sleeping. Mainly there are two types of sleep apnea central sleep apnea and obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). High blood pressure, heart attacks, depression, headaches, and stroke are some of the health problems related to the disorder.
American Sleep Association calculates that more than sixty million adults in the United States have some sort of sleep disorder. Treatment for sleep apnea includes maintaining a healthy weight, sticking to regular sleep hours, humidifying bedroom, avoiding smoking and alcohol, and regular exercises. Other than these, there are several clinical methods to get relief from a sleep disorder.
Despite the clamoring on the disease, a recent discovery through research says that sleep apnea is curable with an oral appliance.
Oral appliance therapy can become a life-changing treatment for patients suffering from OSA. These therapies can effectively treat obstructive sleep apnea by enhancing the sleep, restoring the alertness, and reviving health. Patients prefer oral appliance therapy to any other treatment because it is comfortable, easy to wear, portable, and convenient for travel.
In obstructive sleep apnea, relaxation of the muscles around the tongue and throat causes the tissues to block airflow to the lungs while you sleep. There are some of the most widely used oral appliances to treat OSA.
Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP)
Continuous Positive Airway Pressure is one of the most commonly used non-surgical treatments for obstructive sleep apnea. In OSA person experiences, shortness of breath several times while asleep, due to a blocked airway. A CPAP device increases the flow of air pressure in the throat, preventing the airway from collapsing when the people breathe. In this manner, the CPAP device helps a person to have more regulated breathing. The device consists of three parts, which include the CPAP motor, CPAP hoses, and CPAP mask. The motor clears the obstruction by delivering the right amount of air, and hoses send the air from the motor to the mask. This process can eliminate breathing and snoring issues and will offer improved quality of sleep. Studies reveal that people who use CPAP for more extended times each night have less daytime sleepiness and depression and fewer heart issues.
Mandibular advancement device (MAD)
Mandibular advancement device is a device that can treat chronic snoring and OSA by introducing it into the mouth to modify the position of the jaw, the tongue, and other supporting structures of the UA. MAD is more like a mouth guard used in sports. The device has metal hinges that make it possible for the lower jaw to be eased forward. It also snaps over the upper and lower dental arches. There are two versions of MAD's – fixed advancement MAD and adjustable advancement MAD. In 1995, the American Academy of Sleep Medicine published a study that stated that MAD was the first-line therapy for mild OSA and second-line therapy for moderate to severe OSA.
Tongue retaining the device
A tongue-retaining device, also referred to as a tongue-stabilizing device, holds the tongue in place. Its performance is much similar to that of the mandibular advancement device. The device is like a splint that holds the tongue in place to keep the airway open.
The people who are using dental devices for OSA have to visit doctor periodically for regular checkups. The checkups are necessary to check the working of the equipment and to make possible adjustments and replacements if needed. Although people prefer dental devices than standard surgeries, these devices are not without drawbacks. Some of the disadvantages related to the devices are altered bite, movement of teeth, pain, arthritis of the temporal mandibular joint (TMJ), dry lips, and excessive drooling.