Sleep apnea is a serious, sometimes fatal medical disorder that affects around 10% of American men over the age of 40, and 6% of American women of the same age. Sleep apnea sufferers completely stop breathing during sleep, sometimes hundreds of times in a single night. Normal breathing ceases because the airway becomes obstructed, causing a serious reduction of airflow to the lungs.
There are a number of dental devices that can be used to alleviate this condition. The goal of most of these devices is to separate the jaws and push them forward slightly. This slight re-positioning opens up the airway, and allows oxygen to flow freely again. Wearers of sleep apnea dental devices report that they stop loud snoring, feel more rested in the daytime, and are much more comfortable going to sleep. Sleep apnea appliances work best on patients who are not significantly overweight. They offer a viable alternative to Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP).
Sleep Apnea Appliances Fall Into Two Categories: Fixed and Adjustable.
Here Are Brief Descriptions Of Some Commonly Used Sleep Apnea Dental Appliances:
Myerson EMA® Appliance
The EMA (Elastic Mandibular Advancement) oral appliance from Myerson increases airway space by advancing the mandible using interchangeable elastic straps. EMA elastic straps come in 9 different lengths and 4 different strengths.
The shorter the EMA elastic strap, the farther the mandible is advanced. 36 different straps allow for the most effective repositioning with maximum comfort for the patient. The EMA Oral Appliance from Myerson works by opening the bite and gently advancing the mandible with interchangeable elastic straps to increase airway space. This custom made oral appliance is only available through medical and dental professionals.
The EMA is made from a proprietary thermoplastic polymer that delivers superior impact strength to acrylic at a lower cost than polycarbonate. With proper care, the EMA custom lab-fabricated appliance will effectively treat OSA (Obstructive Sleep Apnea) for years.
Panthera D-SAD™ Appliance
To open the upper airway, the appliance moves the lower jaw forward to a comfortable position thus enabling you to breathe during your sleep. The Panthera D-SAD™ moves and maintains the lower jaw in a forward position, so that air can flow normally.
Using the latest technology in 3D printing, the Panthera D-SAD™ is manufactured to fit only you. Thanks to this process, the outcome is the most predictable: Panthera Dental offers the most durable appliance on the market, perfectly adapted to each patient. The D-SAD™ eliminates noise completely, thus allowing travel without disturbing others.
The Panthera D-SAD™ comes with a 5-year warranty and is provided with a customized warranty card including your name, the name of your dental practitioner and a unique identification number. With this card, we will be able to easily access your information if needed.
The Klearway™ appliance is generally used to alleviate obstructive sleep disorder and eliminate snoring. The patient or dentist can project the jaw forwards in increments of .25mm at a time. This ensures maximum comfort for the sleeper. The Klearway™ appliance is made from Variflex™ heat softening acrylic, which makes it easier to insert. Running warm water over the appliance makes it pliable, but once placed in the desired position, the acrylic hardens again.
Herbst® Telescopic Appliance
The Herbst® appliance is held in the mouth by clasps and friction grips. It is made of acrylic, and contains adjustable metal wiring. The advantage of this appliance is that the wearer is able to move vertically and laterally without dislodging the appliance.
The Herbst® appliance is usually used in mild and moderate cases of sleep apnea, and can also alleviate loud snoring effectively.
If you have questions or concerns about sleep apnea appliances, please ask our dentists!