Dental appliances are tiny little devices that can be placed in the mouth while a person sleeps. They’re a lot like retainers in the sense that you wear them over your teeth while you sleep. Many of our patients at Dipika T Shah, DDS, LLC., in Holmdel, NJ have tried them with satisfying results in the treatment of sleep apnea.
At Dipika T Shah, DDS, LLC., we get patients asking us about how these small appliances work. To answer the question, we first need to understand what sleep apnea is and why it happens. People who have sleep apnea have prolonged periods in their sleep where they stop breathing.
This usually happens because of an occluded airway. They can then start snoring or might wake up to catch their breath.
Dental or oral appliances work by holding your jaw in a certain position that keeps it open. In turn, your airway should stay open, allowing air to flow in and out freely.
They’re very effective for many cases with mild sleep apnea. Those who have significant soft tissue obstruction that impedes the airway might not benefit from these dental appliances. The severity of your sleep apnea will be determined before a treatment plan is put in place.
We get patients all the time who were referred by their doctors to us so we can fit them with oral appliances. It’s our priority to make sure your appliance fits you perfectly for two reasons. The first is that it has to fit properly for it to work, or else it might make things worse. The second is for your comfort so you can sleep peacefully.
Getting a readymade appliance is recommended against because if it doesn’t fit right, it’ll probably cause more problems. You won’t be able to sleep in an irritating and poorly fitting appliance, either.
Patients who get dental appliances usually have a high compliance rate. They’re not hard to use and don’t have an impact on your appearance or lifestyle. You’ll just notice that you have more energy during the day because you’ll start sleeping properly.
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