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Oral Sleep Appliance- Things to Know

Just like there are several types and forms of snoring, there are also numerous remedies, techniques, and devices that help silence the snore. One effective solution is the use of oral sleep appliances.

These custom made devices help treat snoring and Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) by repositioning your jaw or holding your tongue in place while sleeping.   It has been proven that these appliances can improve your sleep and enhance your alertness levels.

There are a variety of oral appliances to fit every mouth shape and condition. The appliance usually covers the teeth and positions your jaw to prevent any sort of blockage or obstruction in your airways, which can help prevent snoring.

Appliances are not all the same. One type of appliance will not work for everyone.  Each mouth is as unique as a thumbprint, that is why these appliances are customized per patient.  Also, because every individual sleeps differently and experiences unique snoring-related problems, it is best to consult a sleep dentist or sleep specialist before using an over-the-counter sleep guard.

Anatomical Features

This refers to the structure of your of the mouth, nose, the roof of your mouth, etc.  Anatomical features can refer to a small mouth, nasal resistance due to the size of the nose, limited vertical opening or a large jaw, to name a few.

Sleep dentists have been trained to evaluate these features and to choose the oral appliance best suited for your particular needs and condition.  Bite impressions are taken to ensure a proper fit. Your sleep specialist will be able to determine which oral appliances are best suited for your anatomical features.

Dental Conditions

It is vital to assess your dental condition which may include things like wearing dentures, sensitive teeth, bridges, crowns, missing teeth, etc.  For example, if you have sensitive teeth, you may need to get a device that exercises gentle retention.

Comfort Levels

During your research, you might have seen that a CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) is the most recommended piece of equipment to combat snoring and sleep apnea. However, it has also been reported to be associated with extreme discomfort.

This appliance is so noisy and bulky that it can truly disrupt a good night’s sleep. This goes to show that while a device may appear to be efficient and useful, it may not be necessary to comply with your comfort levels, oral appliances are a comfortable alternative.

In conclusion, it is best to speak with your sleep dentist about which oral appliances is best for you.  The proper oral appliance is directly related to the overall success of treatment.

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