Will My Sleep Apnea Oral Appliance Damage My Teeth?
Sleep apnea is a serious condition that can lead to hypertension, stroke, and other serious health complications. For some people, the standard treatment for sleep apnea, a CPAP machine, is intolerable. Rather than comply with treatment, some patients simply cannot or will not wear their CPAP machine at night, leaving them at risk. Dental appliances are widely accepted alternative treatments for sleep apnea that are less uncomfortable and for many patients, result in better compliance.
How Do Oral Appliances Work to Improve Apnea?
Our dental sleep oral appliance fits in the mouth like a mouthpiece for boxing or a mouth guard for wrestling. When worn throughout the night, the appliance helps treat obstructive sleep apnea by preventing the tongue from collapsing into the soft tissues in the back of the soft tissue palate. This keeps the airway open and allows the patient to obtain sufficient oxygen throughout the night. It can be used alone or alongside other treatments.
Do Oral Appliances for Sleep Apnea Damage Teeth?
There have been a number of studies conducted to measure the impact of the oral appliance on teeth. While there is some movement of the teeth involved as the appliance reshapes the way the mouth is held at night, the benefits of compliance with sleep apnea treatment often outweigh these risks. Untreated sleep apnea not only impacts your health; because it impairs you cognitively ability, it impacts your ability to drive and operate machinery safely. As with any medical treatment, it’s a matter of weighing the pros and cons.
Benefits of oral appliance therapy include:
- Oral appliances are comfortable and easy to wear
- Non-invasive form of snoring and sleep apnea therapy
- Significantly improves sleep apnea symptoms including oxygen saturation and daytime sleepiness
- Oral appliances are small and convenient for travel
- Higher compliance rates than with CPAP
If you have been struggling with sleep apnea and are looking for ways to manage it, contact eos dental sleep to set up an appointment. We can help determine the cause of your sleep issues, recommend, and provide our best treatment options.