Sleep Apnea Treatment

Sleep Apnea Treatments

Treatments for sleep apnea

Sleep Apnea Treatments

Treatments for sleep apnea

Dr. Benjamin Polan shares his treatments for sleep apnea in Beverly, MA

Treatments for sleep apnea

Snoring occurs when the soft tissues of the upper airway collapse during sleep, which narrows a person’s airway. When the attempt is made to force air through this narrow airway during expiration, the tissues vibrate, producing the snoring sound. The health condition sometimes produced by snoring is termed obstructive sleep apnea, (OSA).

It is estimated that 18 million Americans suffer from OSA. Common symptoms are sleeping or sleepiness during the day and snoring at night. Some individuals actually stop breathing as often as a hundred times in one night. Those at risk are individuals with high blood pressure, irregular heartbeat, type II diabetes, metabolic syndrome and most of all, obesity.

There are two methods of classifying OSA

OSA can be categorized as mild, moderate, or severe. Apnea can also be classified as central sleep apnea or obstructive sleep apnea. Central sleep apnea is the least common type, and occurs when the brain fails to send messages to the respiratory muscles to perform the act of breathing. During obstructive sleep apnea, air cannot flow out of an individual’s nose or mouth even though the muscles involved in respiration are making the attempt.

CPAP stands for continuous positive airway pressure. It produces pressure during expiration to keep the throat open while the individual sleeps. A mask is hooked to a hose that connects to a machine that provides air and pressure. If the patient suffers from severe sleep apnea, and CPAP has been unsuccessful, surgery may be necessary. Surgery may involve removing the tissue that collapses during sleep, and if this type of surgery is unsuccessful, a more complex surgery may be attempted in which the mouth and facial bones are reconstructed. However, there is a highly effective treatment that is totally non-invasive: Oral Appliance Therapy.

New dental appliance treatment

A new sleep apnea treatment has been developed that utilizes a dental appliance which looks much like a mouth guard worn by sports players. This mouth piece moves the tongue or lower jaw forward, which opens the airway and makes it easier to breathe. These appliances are recommended as a first line treatment for those with mild to moderate sleep apnea, and as a treatment for those with severe OSA but who cannot tolerate the CPAP machine.

This special dental appliance is fitted by a dentist like Dr. Benjamin Polan in Beverly, MA who’s trained in dental sleep medicine. The oral appliance is approved by the National Institutes of Health, the American Sleep Apnea Association, and the American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine. These are also FDA approved. There are many advantages to using this apparatus.

This special FDA approved, custom made oral appliance is fitted by a dentist trained in dental sleep medicine. The apparatus is approved by the National Institutes of Health, the American Sleep Apnea Association, and the American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine. There are many advantages to using this apparatus. It is small, fits easily into the mouth and does not cover the face with a mask. It is easy to pack when traveling. It is doesn’t make drinking any more difficult, and it’s very easy to talk while wearing it.

Choosing a dentist to treat OSA is an important, life changing decision. Dr. Benjamin Polan is a trained sleep disorder dentist in Beverly, MA. He combines aesthetic dentistry and neuromuscular dentistry, which qualifies him to treat temporomandibular dysfunction, or TMJ. Dr. Polan trained at the Somnomed Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine and the Allentown Pain Center, The Elite Dental Center and The Tufts Dental School Mini-REsidency Program in Sleep Apnea.

Life transforming dental solutions

By Beverly MA Dentist Dr. Benjamin Polan

Snoring Devices

Snoring Devices

A snoring device can help stop snoring

Snoring Devices

A snoring device can help stop snoring

Dr. Benjamin Polan uses snoring devices to solve snoring in Beverly, MA

A snoring device can help stop snoring

Millions of people suffer nightly from sleep apnea with symptoms ranging from snoring to the inability to breathe. The symptoms can be mild to severe and can lead to sleepless nights and in extreme cases even death. Modern science has developed several methods designed to correct sleep disorders. The continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine is a treatment that uses mild air pressure to keep the airways open.

CPAP is typically used by people who have breathing problems, but it may be also used to treat preterm infants whose lungs have not fully developed. It involves a small bedside device and a mask worn while sleeping to help stop snoring.

Patients who do not respond to CPAP generally benefit from other oral appliances such as mouthguards. These small gadgets are similar to the mouthpieces worn by athletes and provide the wearer some much-needed relief from their breathing issues. However, their effectiveness has not been scientifically proven, nor is it covered by medical insurance.

Oral appliance therapy involves custom fabricating an FDA approved oral device fitted specifically for the patient. It maintains an unobstructed airway in the throat when worn during sleep. Custom-made oral appliances, fashioned by a sleep dentist such as Dr. Benjamin Polan in Beverly, MA are proven to be much more effective than over-the-counter devices which are not recommended as a long-term therapy.

In the United States, oral devices to treat obstructive sleep apnea cannot be sold over the counter. A board certified sleep medicine physician must first provide a diagnosis and recommend the most effective treatment approach. A dental sleep medicine specialist may then provide treatment and follow-up.

The benefits of oral appliances over CPAP

There are many benefits to using an oral appliance over a bulky CPAP machine. Oral appliances are much more comfortable and easier to wear. Since the appliances are custom fit specifically for each patient, most people find that it only takes a couple of weeks to become used to wearing them. Oral appliances are small and convenient making them easy to carry when traveling. In addition, the treatment with oral appliances is reversible and non-invasive and alleviates the need for painful surgeries or excessive doctor’s visits.

The main purpose of the oral snoring device is to reposition and stabilize the lower jaw and tongue, opening the throat and clearing the airway. This method of dental therapy improves the muscle tone of the tongue and literally teaches the patient how to breathe properly.

The physiology and structure of the wearer’s mouth and jaw is in most cases the root of many sleep disorders. An overbite or a protruding chin can put the soft palate at the back of the throat in an improper position. Combined with the tongue retracting to the back of the mouth, the airflow is impeded and can cause loud snoring sounds along with pauses in breathing.

Oral appliances are designed to place the patient’s tongue forward in the mouth and involuntarily put the lower jaw back into alignment. The result is unobstructed breathing and a restful sleep. The use of an oral appliance in addition to lifestyle changes such as good sleep hygiene, exercise and weight loss can make major changes in a person’s sleep habits.

By treating sleep apnea, patients can reduce their risk for heart disease, stroke and diabetes, and improve daytime alertness, concentration and emotional stability. If you’re experiencing any snoring or symptoms of sleep apnea, feel free to contact sleep dentist Dr. Benjamin Polan to get back your deep, restful nights.

Life transforming dental solutions

By Beverly MA Dentist Dr. Benjamin Polan