Sleep apnea can be a difficult condition to live with for many different reasons. The symptoms associated with this condition can be quite troubling for the patient suffering from sleep apnea as well as for family members, partners and friends. Some of these symptoms include a stoppage of breath while sleeping, gasping or choking in the middle of the night, loud snoring and other breathing problems that lead to un-restful sleep, fatigue and morning headaches. In order to get the rest you need and breathe properly through the night, there are a variety of oral appliances available out there that are designed to specifically help patients living with sleep apnea.
CPAP Machine and Oral Appliance Therapy
The main oral appliance that is often prescribed in order to facilitate healthy breathing during sleep is a CPAP machine, but not every patient adjusts well to the device for any number of reasons, which is why oral appliances are also available. Oral appliance therapy or OAT helps prevent the collapse of the tongue and soft tissues in the back of the throat by supporting the jaw in a forward position, keeping the airway open during sleep so that you can breathe properly all night long. Like any other treatment method oral appliance therapy works for some patients but may not be suitable for others. For instance, OAT is not recommended for people with central sleep apnea, who are morbidly obese, for people with poor detention and poor oral hygiene.
Night Shift is another available option, and is a device that is worn around the neck at night while sleeping. This device aims to gently nudge the patient into a more favorable sleeping position that will be more conducive to better breathing if the device detects that they have moved onto their back or other position unhealthy for breathing. This option is not appropriate for patients with acute neck, shoulder or back pain, for those with cardiac arrhythmia assisted by an artificial pacemaker, or for patients who have a skin sensitivity or open wound.
Call Dr. Grin to Learn More
Call our office at (310) 933-3077 to learn more about your treatment options.