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Effective Treatment for Sleep Apnea without a Mask

At our Williamsburg, VA, dental practice, Dr. James Burden can provide custom-made oral appliances as sleep apnea treatment. He also offers treatment for snoring.

What is Sleep Apnea?

The most common type of sleep apnea occurs when the soft tissue at the back of the throat relaxes during sleep, causing a blockage of the airway (through either the nose and/or mouth), and loud snoring occurs accompanied by a 10-second or more lapse in breathing several times in a night.

Those experiencing sleep apnea in any degree often share the following symptoms:

  • Loud snoring, interrupted by gasps for air or choking during sleep
  • Pauses in breathing of 10 seconds or longer
  • Daytime sleepiness, regardless of the amount of sleep you think you had

Not Sure if You Have Sleep Apnea? 

Take a Free Sleep Test to get a better idea of the condition of your sleep and if you may be suffering from a sleep disorder, such as sleep apnea. This is the Epworth Sleepiness Scale test, designed to see if you are getting enough sleep.

If you also have other symptoms, such as loud snoring or you or your partner have noticed that there are pauses in your breathing as you sleep, you could be suffering from sleep apnea.

Sleep Test in the Comfort of Your Home

Your next step is to take a sleep test to evaluate if you have sleep apnea, and its severity. Dr. Burden provides a Home Sleep Test. In the past a patient had to go to a sleep center for the night. This affordable test is done right in the comfort of your home.

The sleep test is done using a special dental device that records the night’s activity. The data is downloaded directly from the device and a physician who is a certified sleep specialist evaluates the information and makes a diagnosis with recommendation for treatment. Dr. Burden goes over the results with you and any recommendation from the sleep test.

A side view of an unobstructed and obstructed airway.

Understanding the Cause

In patients with sleep apnea, the tongue or other soft tissues may slide back and block the airway. 

 

Treating Sleep Apnea with Oral Appliance Therapy

Dr. Burden uses Oral Appliance Therapy to control obstructive sleep apnea. This consists simply of using a device similar to a mouth guard to keep the airways open at night. Most oral appliances work by positioning the lower jaw slightly forward and slightly down, keeping the airway open.

A Comfortable, Effective Alternative to CPAP

CPAP machineUp until relatively recently, the standard of care for sleep apnea treatment was the use of a CPAP machine, a device fitted with a mask to provide a regular airflow. However, many people cannot tolerate the CPAP, or find it difficult to use on a regular basis. Oral appliance therapy is the effective chosen method of treatment for many sleep apnea sufferers.

Already Diagnosed with Sleep Apnea?

If you are already a diagnosed sleep apnea sufferer with mild to moderate apnea, you should make an appointment for a Complimentary Consultation with Dr. Burden to discuss how Oral Appliance Therapy can work for you.

Fitting You for Your Oral Appliance

If you have been diagnosed with mild to moderate sleep apnea, Dr. Burden can help you with oral appliance therapy. He will take impressions and design your custom oral appliance. It’s made specifically for you and adjusted for maximum effectiveness and comfort. In periodic checkups, Dr. Burden will ensure your appliance fits well as he monitors your progress.

Dr. Burden recommends the TAP (Thornton Adjustable Positioner®) appliance. The TAP appliance has over a 95% success rate treating sleep apnea without the need for surgery, a CPAP unit or medication. The TAP is recognized as the market leader in oral appliances for sleep apnea and snoring and is currently prescribed by over 7,000 dentists worldwide.

Oral Appliance Therapy for Snoring

Oral appliance for sleep apneaDr. Burden can help you with your snoring using oral appliance therapy. This consists of using a device similar to a mouth guard to keep the airways open at night. Most oral appliances work by positioning the lower jaw slightly forward and slightly down, keeping the airway open.

Your first step is a Complimentary Consultation with Dr. Burden. He will do any necessary tests and discuss your symptoms in case you also have any symptoms of sleep apnea. He will then take impressions and design your custom oral appliance. It’s made specifically for you and adjusted for maximum effectiveness and comfort. In periodic checkups, Dr. Burden will ensure your appliance fits well and is doing its job.

Get a Better Night's Sleep

Often, patients with sleep apnea wake up tired and groggy. Leaving sleep apnea untreated can lead to serious sleep deprivation and cause a variety of side effects. For more information about treating sleep apnea with an oral appliance, contact our office online or call (757) 229-1224 today.

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There are amazing people in that office! My family has been going to this dental office for years and I can't think of a better place to go for dental care. Friendly, caring, and compassionate.

-Cheryl W.
Williamsburg, VA