Nasal continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) is a common therapy for obstructive sleep apnea. According to a recent study, however, using nasal CPAP for three years may induce jaw and tooth position changes. Patients may have concerns as a result of these findings since sleep apnea treatment includes CPAP usage throughout their lifetime. Oral appliances are an alternative dental device that can be used to treat sleep apnea without the risk of facial changes.
In the new Japanese study, researchers examined men who used a nasal mask to administer CPAP therapy while sleeping. Nasal CPAP has been linked with changes in facial structure and bite in children, but this was the first time that such modifications were seen in adults. Facial changes might have an impact on the face’s profile, tongue space, and obstructive sleep apnea symptoms.
CPAP treatment is generally given to people who have been diagnosed with obstructive sleep apnea. However, a significant number of patients are CPAP intolerant. They are unable to sleep when wearing the mask, hoses, or machine noise disrupts their sleep. Oral appliance therapy, on the other hand, is quite well tolerated by the majority of patients.
Treating Sleep Apnea with Oral Appliances
Obstructive sleep apnea is a dangerous condition that can result in heart attack and stroke, therefore it’s critical to combat it. A custom oral appliance, created by a dentist who has received specialized training in dental sleep medicine and has prior experience dealing with neuromuscular dentistry, is highly successful at treating snoring and obstructive sleep apnea.
An oral appliance is a small dental device that is worn in the mouth during sleep. It looks similar to a sports mouthguard or an orthodontic retainer. The oral appliance fits over the teeth and holds the jaw in a forward position, which keeps the airway open during sleep.
If you have been diagnosed with obstructive sleep apnea, ask your doctor about oral appliance therapy as an alternative to CPAP. You may find that it’s a more comfortable and convenient option with no risk of facial changes.