Oral Appliance Therapy vs. PAP Treatment
Have you been diagnosed with sleep apnea but are unhappy with the treatment options that have been presented to you? The team at Advanced Dental Sleep Medicine, in consultation with your sleep physician, may recommend that patients who are considering positive airway pressure (PAP), or are unhappy with or intolerant to it, consider oral appliance therapy as an alternative. We can help you weigh the benefits of oral appliance therapy vs. PAP treatment during an appointment at our Stratford, Guilford, or New Haven, CT, office.
What is PAP Treatment?
Positive airway pressure treatment, also referred to as PAP or CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure), is the gold standard for the treatment of moderate to severe sleep apnea. With PAP treatment, you will need to wear a mask that covers your nose, mouth, or both as you sleep. This mask is connected to a pump, which forces a continuous stream of air through the tube connecting the two.
Many PAP therapy patients may only wear the mask intermittently and eventually not at all. This is mainly because wearing a mask to sleep every night is uncomfortable.
While PAP treatment is effective when used properly, 50 percent of patients become non-compliant within the first year. This is mainly because wearing a mask to sleep every night is uncomfortable and socially awkward. Patients may wear the mask intermittently and eventually not at all.
Possible Side Effects
In addition to experiencing discomfort, PAP treatment can result in other unpleasant side effects. While it may help relieve you of your sleep apnea symptoms, many patients will experience: dryness in the nose and the mouth, headaches, dry eyes, abdominal bloating, and skin irritation on the face. The side effects and general discomfort some patients experience with PAP treatment makes it less than ideal to relieve them of their sleep apnea symptoms over the long term.
A Comfortable, Effective Alternative
Oral appliance therapy is customized to fit comfortably over your teeth, just as a sports mouth guard or orthodontic retainer would. The oral appliance moves your lower jaw into a slightly forward position, which works to keep the airway open and significantly improve snoring and breathing interruptions. The majority of our patients adapt comfortably to the use of a custom oral appliance. Oral appliance therapy boasts a great long-term compliance rate, allowing patients to sleep more restfully and feel refreshed upon waking.
Improve Your Sleep Apnea Symptoms Today
If you are trying to determine which sleep apnea treatment is right for you, trust an experienced doctor who is passionate about helping his patients improve their health. Contact our office and schedule an appointment with Dr. Reza Radmand using our simple online form or by calling (203) 689-5313.