Regarding Oral Appliances for Sleep Apnea/Sleep-Related Bruxism…
There are important considerations before committing to an oral appliance for treating sleep apnea or sleep-related bruxism.
- Your teeth must be in good repair, no cavities or broken surfaces
- If you have old fillings that may need replacing in the near future, do so, before you get your appliance to ensure a proper fit
- If you have active periodontal (gum) disease, this should be treated or at least stabilized before starting this treatment
- If your teeth are loose due to gum disease, an appliance may worsen this and you should consider other options.
- You need a minimum number of teeth to support an appliance. Speak with your dentist if you are not sure. Generally, if you can wear partial dentures, you can wear an oral appliance
- If you are a significant gagger, inform your dentist so that the appliance can be modified for this. The Luco Hybrid OSA Appliance is well tolerated by gaggers.
- This is a long term commitment. Do not take this treatment lightly, sleep apnea is a very serious condition and sleep-related bruxism can affect your heart.
- It is your responsibility at all times to inform your dentist, your medical doctor and your sleep specialist if your symptoms worsen or this treatment is no longer working for you.
- Your dentist is the best person to decide if you are a candidate for any oral appliance therapy.
- If you are currently using a CPAP or similar device and getting good results, please note that this is the most effective treatment you can have. If you have CPAP and are having diffiuculty using it, this appliance is an excellent alternative for you.
- Many patients purchase an oral appliance for travelling, camping etc and use a CPAP at home.
- Severe OSA patients may benefit from combination therapy: an oral appliance with a CPAP. The appliance opens the airway allowing the CPAP to use lower pressure, reducing complications associated with higher pressure. Combination therapy also addresses secondary sleep-related bruxism, that occurs with sleep apnea.
- If you suffer from sleep-related bruxism, it is important to notify your dentist of this so that your treatment can be tailored for treatment of both conditions.
- If you take an SSRI (selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitor) or SSNRI (selective serotonin norepinephrine re-uptake inhibitor) type medication, it is important to notify your dentist as this can affect your treatment significantly.
In our experience, with excellent home care, most patients can easily wear an OSA appliance without injuring their teeth or supporting structures. OSA appliances are extremely effective in the treatment of sleep apnea, snoring and upper airway resistance syndrome. The Luco Hybrid OSA Appliance is also very effective in treating sleep-related bruxism and TMD. As with all dental appliances, you should see your dentist every 6 months for checkups and cleanings. Teeth should last your lifetime. And treatment of sleep of sleep apnea, this can prolong your life. It is also your responsibility, as the patient, to notify your dentist if you are having any difficulties with the treatment.