Your doctor and/or dentist will make the decision on which treatment type is right for you and that often depends on the severity of your obstructive sleep apnea (OSA).
Sleep Apnea Solutions and Treatment
SomnoDent: COAT™ — Continuous Open Airway Therapy
Worn during sleep, continuous open airway therapy is a first line treatment option for people with mild to moderate OSA and consists of devices that have two components which fit over the upper and lower teeth.These oral devices are comfortable and simple for patients to use which is why many patients prefer COAT therapy to other options. In someone with sleep apnea who either doesn’t respond to or doesn’t tolerate treatment with a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP), a SomnoDent oral device, a type of mouthguard that moves the jaw can be very helpful. SomnoDent is a custom-made oral appliance for the treatment of mild to moderate obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). SomnoDent is worn during sleep to provide Continuous Open Airway Therapy (COAT) by moving the lower jaw slightly forward. This movement tightens the soft tissue and muscles of the upper airway, which prevents obstructive apneas while you sleep. With a sleep apnea diagnosis, most insurance companies cover the cost of a SomnoDent. Ask your physician and/or dentist today about SomnoDent.
Devices in the SomnoDent® family of products treat OSA by stabilizing and / or moving the lower jaw slightly forward. This optimal position of the jaw, prevents the patient’s airway from collapsing during sleep.
How do I receive a SomnoDent device?
A sleep physician will diagnose you with OSA and determine the most effective treatment option for you. After the physician prescribes COAT therapy, a qualified sleep dentist will conduct a thorough oral exam to confirm your oral health status, as well as ensure you are dentally appropriate for the device. Dental impressions and a bite registration are required to fabricate the SomnoDent. These items are then sent to SomnoMed where the device is made. Once customized for you, the device will be fitted by the dentist, who will instruct you on how to insert and remove it by yourself, including how to clean and care for it.
Excess weight can add tissue to the neck that presses and restricts airways, leading to the vibrations that produce snores. People who gain a few pounds every year may develop sleep apnea, but if they gained the weight and then started snoring, losing the weight may help alleviate the snoring. Not to mention, losing excess weight carries a number of additional health benefits!
CPAP is worn at night while sleeping, pressure is applied through a tube and mask that covers the nose and mouth. While the majority of patients are prescribed a CPAP machine when they are initially diagnosed with OSA, various studies report CPAP compliance rates at or below 50% at 2 years
While the FDA has approved nasal valves for the treatment of sleep apnea, they’re one-time use, and not exactly cheap.
A surgical approach may be an alternative to create an open airway. The goal of surgery is to create a more open airway so obstructions are less likely to occur. Surgery can be quite invasive and sometimes worsen the apnea. There are several different surgical procedures with varying degrees of success.