The Role of a Sleep Medicine Trained Dentist with Treating Sleep Apnea

Sleep Apnea Briarcliff Manor, NY

The growing number of sleep apnea cases needs the collaboration of health care professionals. Several treatment options are now available for people suffering from this sleep disorder. Your specially trained dental care professional can help you along the way. If you want to find out what role a sleep medicine dentist has in treating sleep apnea, here are the details.

The role of a sleep medicine-trained dentist

Dentists and doctors work together to address sleep apnea. A dentist well-trained in sleep medicine is crucial in diagnosing and treating patients with breathing disorders during sleep. A thorough dental check allows the dentist to ask about the patient’s complete medical history. The dentist could then pinpoint the symptoms. This could then result in a referral to the right doctor.

The patient will have a sleep test after a full physical exam and diagnosis. The dentist will help check if the most effective solution would be an oral appliance. A sleep medicine dentist can give the patient the right oral appliance. The device will be custom-fit. The dentist will update the doctor on the patient’s progress. This will ensure the most optimal treatment for the patient.

What dental sleep medicine offers

This focus of dental sleep medicine is the treatment of sleep apnea and loud snoring. Dentists with sleep medicine training work with clinicians and doctors to find the right treatment plan. A sleep medicine dentist helps in the management of the patient’s OSA(obstructive sleep apnea) symptoms and snoring. Using OAT (oral appliance therapy) is an effective way to correct the condition.

A dentist can offer a tongue-retaining mouthpiece if the patient has minimal jaw flexibility. This oral appliance keeps the tongue from dropping into the air passage while the person sleeps. It wraps around the tongue itself. That way, the appliance holds the tongue in place with a delicate suction.

Sleep medicine dentists can also recommend a MAD (mandibular advancement device). This oral appliance looks like an athletic mouthguard. It can fit over the lower and upper teeth. The two trays stay in place with the help of a hinge. A MAD holds the tongue in a forward position while sleeping at night. It also holds the lower jaw in place. The dentist can adjust the MAD to make it more effective and comfortable.

Using an oral appliance in sleep apnea treatment

The sleep doctor will suggest the use of a dental appliance. The recommendation will be based on the doctor’s treatment plan for OSA. The dentist with sleep medicine training will provide the oral appliance. Follow-ups will enable the dentist to adjust the oral appliance. The sleep medicine will then update the sleep doctor about the patient’s progress.

Sleep apnea is treatable with the collaboration of a sleep medicine dentist and a sleep doctor

Treating sleep apnea needs full attention from your sleep doctor and your sleep medicine dentist. This collaboration will give way to the proper fabrication and adjustments of the right oral appliance. Regular dental checks with your sleep medicine dentist can ensure optimal dental care. This will make sure the patient has a comfortable and effective sleep apnea treatment.

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