When people come to us with issues sleeping, we will use an assessment and home sleep test to see if they’re suffering from obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). If so, then we will likely move forward with treatment using an oral splint. But how does your Greenville, TX, dentist create a custom sleep appliance, and how does a simple device help stop a serious sleep disorder?
The Warning Signs of OSA
How do you know if you have trouble sleeping due to a disorder like OSA? People with OSA often report an array of symptoms in their day-to-day life, which could include chronic snoring, waking with dry mouth, headaches, trouble staying awake during the day, difficulty concentrating on tasks at work or school, or moodiness. The symptoms could grow more severe with time. The disorder actually causes us to stop breathing for brief periods during the night. Even though we rarely remember it, the brain wakes us multiple times. Unless treated, this could lead to issues with your immune system and heart health.
Designing a Custom Appliance
An oral splint is worn at night as you sleep. The device will fit comfortably, much like a mouthguard, and helps move the jaw forward slightly. Doing so helps prevent the collapse of soft tissues that obstructs breathing. You then breathe without interruption, and avoid the harmful symptoms of OSA. We design them by taking detailed images and impressions of your smile with advanced digital technology, using them to design an appliance created specifically for your smile. For most people, the device is a preferred alternative to treatments like the CPAP machine. The devices we use may include Dynaflex Dorsal, Thornton Adjustable Positioner, EMA Appliance, and the Herbst Appliance.
Altering Your Sleep Habits
Along with an oral splint, we may suggest making a few changes to how you approach your rest. For example, maintaining a regular schedule helps you rest easier, as does avoid screens right before bed and cutting back in caffeinated beverages in the evening. You may also find keeping your bedroom dark and cool is helpful too. Resting on your side instead of your back can help prevent the collapse of soft tissues too, and limit the risk of snoring as well. If you have any questions about creating custom oral appliances, or about how we identify and diagnose issues like OSA, then contact our team today.
Smith Family Dentistry in Greenville Offers Custom Solutions
At Smith Family Dentistry, our team is ready to help find out if you benefit from our treatment options. To learn more about how we create a customized treatment option with digital technology, then talk to Dental Sleep Solutions of Greenville by contacting our office at 903-455-0516.