Common complaints about CPAP therapy include hoses obstructing one’s ability to change sleep positions, difficulty cleaning CPAP equipment, and the annoyance of transporting machinery when traveling.
Fortunately, CPAP therapy is not the only non-surgical treatment option for obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). One alternative is the use of custom oral appliances. These appliances are worn similarly to a mouth guard or retainer. They position the bottom jaw forward to help widen the airway. Increasing the diameter of the airway helps prevent episodes of apnea from occurring. Eliminating episodes of sleep apnea will relieve the effects of this condition and improve the quality of a patient’s sleep.
Oral appliance therapy is well-tolerated by most OSA patients. In fact, many patients prefer oral appliance therapy to CPAP treatment. If you are struggling with your CPAP, consulting with our sleep dentist can help you determine if an oral appliance is right for you.
CPAP therapy presents a number of unique advantages to patients. It does not require electricity, nor does it emit noise like a CPAP machine. These appliances do not rely on hoses or nasal/facial masks either. This means that patients can change sleep positions and treat their sleep apnea without uncomfortable and confining equipment.
Following are other popular benefits of oral appliance therapy:
Easy to clean – oral appliances that treat sleep apnea are easy to maintain and clean.
Convenient for traveling – oral appliances come with a small traveling case that can easily fit in the palm of one’s hand. This makes managing sleep apnea on business trips and vacations a breeze.
Non-drying to oral tissue or the face – Many patients complain that CPAP therapy dries out their mouths and faces because these machines emit a continuous stream of air to keep breathing passages open. Since oral appliance therapy does not utilize air, patients can avoid unpleasant dry mouth and dry skin.
Non-claustrophobic – Those who struggle with claustrophobia tend to prefer oral appliance therapy over CPAP as it does not produce feelings of confinement the way that the masks worn with CPAP therapy do.
If learning about oral appliance therapy has piqued your interest, we recommend scheduling a consultation with our sleep dentist. This non-surgical treatment option could make managing sleep apnea more convenient and effective for many OSA sufferers.