Solution for Sleep Apnea Without a CPAP
Ask yourself these questions:
- Have you been diagnosed with OSA by your physician or a sleep specialist?
- Do you snore so badly that it has affected your lifestyle or that of your loved ones?
- Does someone in your house complain your snoring?
- Do you want to stop snoring?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, welcome to the club! Call your physician today to find out if you can join the thousands of people that have called OAT their personal miracle worker. Then, call Dr. Bobbitt for a private consultation. He understands and he wants to help. He will be happy to assist your physician in providing care that can improve your overall health and well-being. After all, he is an OAT appliance user as well!
Click here for a report on sleep apnea.
What is CPAP? Continuous Positive Airway Pressure
Person Using CPAP System
CPAP is pressurized air generated from a bedside machine. The air is delivered through a tube, connected to a mask, covering the nose. The force of the pressurized air splints the airway open. The CPAP opens the airway like air into a balloon; when air is blown into the balloon, it opens and gets wider. This is exactly how CPAP clears the airway. Although the CPAP appliance is the “Gold Standard” for the treatment of OSA, it is hardly a panacea. In fact, the device has been described to be uncomfortable, cumbersome at best and has led to a common dilemma known as “CPAP Intolerance.” This is such a problem that it has been reported that up to 50% of patients who need it to survive are unable to use the appliance because they are UNABLE TO SLEEP! Unfortunately, of the remaining 50% who can use it, less than half are able to tolerate it for more than a few hours each night.
Up to 75% of CPAP Users Feel Like THIS!
In 2002, the American Academy of Sleep Medicine reported that “CPAP Intolerance” was such a common problem that they recommended the use of oral appliance therapy, or OAT, as a “front line” therapy for the treatment of snoring, mild and moderate sleep apnea for those patients who prefer it or cannot tolerate the CPAP machine. Oral appliances are similar to orthodontic retainers or sports mouth guards. OAT involves the selection, design, fitting and use of a custom designed oral appliance that is worn during sleep. These appliances work by maintaining an opened, unobstructed airway in the throat. Oral appliances may be used alone or in combination with other means of treating OSA. These means include general health, weight management, surgery, or CPAP.
A Proven Solution – Oral Appliance Therapy -OAT
Approximately 50 appliances have been approved through the FDA for treatment of snoring and/or Sleep Apnea. Oral appliances work in several ways:
- Repositioning of the lower jaw, tongue, soft palate, and/or uvula
- Stabilizing the lower jaw and tongue, or
- Increasing the muscle tone of the tongue
Dentists with training in OAT are familiar with the various designs of appliances. They can determine which one is best suited for your specific needs. The dentist will work with your physician as part of the medical team in your diagnosis, treatment, and on-going care. Determination of proper therapy can only be made by joint consultation of your dentist and physician. Successful OAT can take from several weeks to several months to complete and may require the use of several different appliances due to the many factors that contribute to OSA. Dr. Bobbitt will continue to monitor your treatment and evaluate the response of your teeth and jaws. Unfortunately, not all patients respond to OAT and may, despite many months of effort, have to resort to surgical techniques or the CPAP for successful control of their OSA.
Therapy for the treatment of OSA is truly a multidisciplinary venture. In addition to OAT provided by your general dentist, your dentist or sleep physician may refer you to an Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon specialist, who can provide a variety of methods to evaluate, diagnose and treat upper airway obstruction. These dental specialists treat upper airway obstructive disorders by utilizing both minimally invasive procedures and more complex surgery, including jaw advancement. In addition, an ENT specialist may evaluate you for other types of surgical therapy, including the removal of the excess tissues in the throat including but not limited to the uvula or parts of the soft palate. It may also be necessary to remove tonsils and adenoids–especially in children.
Dental benefits and medical health insurance benefits are complicated and varied. The details of the individual policies are determined by the purchaser of the plan or policy (usually the patient’s employer) and have little to no direct relevance to the actual needs of the individual. Most dental and medical offices (ours included) have personnel who are trained to help you get the most out of your dental (or medical) benefits.