Question: How is sleep apnea treated by dentists?
Answer: Depending on the cause for the sleep apnea, there are many dental appliances available. It is recommended that a patient who suspects they have sleep apnea or are a chronic snorer should seek medical advice from their physician. Typically patients will undergo a sleep study to determine the level of snoring, sleep apnea, as well other variables that present. Assuming the level of sleep apnea is mild or snoring is the main concern, a dentist can make several different appliances to eliminate snoring. The majority of dental sleep apnea appliances target either moving the jaw and/or tongue which in both cases will enlarge the patient's airway furthermore reducing airway resistance. The increase in airway diameter will allow easier breathing and negate most snoring sounds often associated with a constricted airway. Talk to your dentist about sleep apnea appliances and how they can help you with snoring.