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Oral Appliances for Sleep Apnea

Oral appliances vs. CPAP for sleep apnea - how dental patients benefit from the custom mouthpiece.

A sleep apnea oral appliance is a custom-fitted mouthpiece that helps the patient sleep soundly and minimizes the effects of sleep apnea, such as snoring. These FDA-approved dental devices essentially treat Obstructive Sleep Apnea by preventing airway obstruction and allowing the patient to breathe easily and continuously. Worn in the mouth like an orthodontic appliance during sleep, oral appliances keep the soft tissue from collapsing and interrupting normal breathing patterns. The purpose of this sleep apnea mouthpiece may be to reposition the lower jaw, tongue, soft palate, and hyoid bone into a certain position, to keep the airway open with stabilization of the tongue and jaw, or to provide artificial muscle tone to prevent collapse and resulting airway blockage. The doctors will fit your oral appliance for comfort by using a mold of your mouth to design your unique fit. After a complete diagnosis, they will recommend an oral appliance if needed, and let you know which brand will work best for you. Oral appliances may be used in conjunction with other sleep apnea treatments.

Listed below are common FDA-approved oral appliances accepted for snoring and Obstructive Sleep Apnea:

Thornton Adjustable Positioner (TAP)
The TAP 1 diagnosis appliance is the only dental appliance for sleep apnea that can be titrated in the sleep lab while the patient is asleep. The Thornton Adjustable Positioner uses the principle of cardiopulmonary resuscitation to keep the airway open in order to help patients maintain proper breathing techniques. Oxygen is allowed to flow adequately into the airway with the help of a device that holds the lower jaw forward to prevent collapse of the airway and eliminate instances of breathing cessation. With improved breathing, patients are able to get a good night's rest and give their partners a chance to sleep with decreased snoring. The TAP mouthpiece is comfortable and adjustable to fit each patient's unique size and shaped mouth.

Thornton Adjustable Positioner (TAP) TAP mouthpiece TAP dental appliance for sleep apnea patients

SomnoMed MAS Dental Appliance
The SomnoMed MAS is a custom-made device, consisting of upper and lower dental plates with a unique patented fin-coupling component, which allows normal mouth opening and closing. If required, a part can be added to make the device adjustable. This feature provides incremental and adjustable levels of lower jaw advancement, which improves the effectiveness and comfort-level of treatment as the jaw is moved only as far as is required to alleviate snoring and reduce OSA. Key features and benefits of the device include: Permits normal mouth opening Allows speech and drinking Provides full lip-seal Easily adjustable Safe and effective Clinically proven Custom-fitted Additionally, the SomnoMed MAS is made from durable fade-proof acrylic that retains its shape and color for at least four-five years and is covered by a two year manufacturer's warranty.

SomnoMed MAS Dental Appliance  SomnoMed MAS mouthpiece fitted for sleep apnea patient

SUAD Oral Appliances
The SUAD appliance allows more lateral movement than most oral appliances, and is specially made for our patients who enjoy grinding their teeth at night (you know who you are) The thermoflex material usually requires heating in warm/hot water to soften it enough to place the mouthpiece every night. It also comes with a Morning Repositioner, used for isometric exercises (clenching on bicuspid area) for 15 minutes in morning to help the bite return to normal.

SUAD Oral Appliance     SUAD mouthpiece fitting for sleep apnea patient

aveoTSD Mouthpiece
Unlike oral dental devices , the aveoTSD mouthpiece does not attach to the teeth, and does not require specialist fitting by a dental professional. For maximum compliance this dental appliance for sleep apnea is best suited for use with consultation by a medical doctor or dental professional.

The aveoTSD is a non-adjustable universal device that is the most cost effective and simple to use as sleep apnea treatment. It is approved by the F.D.A in the U.S.A as a medical device.

aveoTSD dental device

Tongue Retaining Device (TRD)
The TRD mouthpiece is lab constructed of a flexible polyvinyl material adapted to the general contours of the teeth and dental arches. It does not depend on teeth for retention. Rather, the tongue is held forward by the negative pressure created in the vacuum bulb on the front of the dental appliance.

Tongue Retaining Device (TRD) for sleep apnea

Silent Nite Oral Appliance
The Silent Nite® appliance is prescribed by more dentists for the initial treatment of snoring. Persons with mild sleep apnea also may be treated when sleep apnea surgery and other medical treatments are ineffective or not desired. A soft/hard frame material is available for increased patient comfort.

Silent Nite Oral Appliance fitting for sleep apnea   Silent Nite Dental Appliance diagram

More information on Sleep Apnea:

Sleep Apnea & Snoring
Dangers & Symptoms of Sleep Apnea
Sleep Apnea Diagnosis