Sleep Apnea & Snoring Appliances
Sleep Apnea is a potentially serious sleep disorder in which breathing repeatedly starts and stops. Untreated sleep apnea prevents you from getting a good night’s sleep. When breathing is paused, you are jolted out of your natural sleep rhythm. As a consequence, you spend more time in light sleep and less time in the deep, restorative sleep you need to be energetic, mentally sharp and productive the next day. You may have sleep apnea if you snore loudly or feel tired even after a full night’s sleep.
Obstructive sleep apnea is the most common type of sleep apnea. It occurs when the soft tissue in the back of your throat relaxes during sleep, causing a blockage of the airway (as well as loud snoring).
In many cases snoring and mild to moderate sleep apnea can be treated successfully with oral appliances. Sometimes oral appliances, in conjunction with C-Pap can avoid surgery or other invasive procedures. Dental appliances may be an option for treatment of obstructive sleep apnea. Dr. Luhmann will fit the patient with a Mandibular Advancement Device (MAD). This is the most widely used dental device for sleep apnea. It is similar in appearance to a sports mouth guard. The appliance forces the lower jaw forward and down slightly, which keeps the airway open.
The benefits of using this appliance include:
- Significant reduction in apnea for those with mild-to moderate apnea, particularly if patients sleep either on their backs or stomachs. They do not work as well if patients sleep lying on their sides.
- Improvement in deep restorative sleep
- Improvement and reduction in the frequency and loudness of snoring