November 16, 2020

Sleep Apnea Mouth Guards

Sleep Apnea Mouth Guards

Sleep apnea is a medical condition that can cause difficulty in breathing while you’re in the middle of sleep, further leading to restless nights, and you’ll end up feeling sleep deprived in the daytime.

If you or someone close to you is suffering from this condition, you’ve likely come to this blog to find possible solutions to this issue. You might also be looking for an alternative to your regular method of treatment. Well, you’re in the right place; we’ll tell you all you need to know about sleep apnea mouth guards.

Mouth-guards are used for various reasons; however, a mouth-guard meant to treat sleep apnea is unique. This mouth guard needs to be custom-made to suit your needs. Visit a dental practitioner specializing in this specific practice and ask them to design a mouth-guard for you.

The method for making a mouth device is similar to the one used to create a retainer. The dentist will take a mold of your teeth and use it to craft a mouthguard. The dentist might use a few different materials, but mouth-guards are most commonly made from plastic.

Depending on your needs, your doctor will probably let you know what oral device he recommends. But you might want to familiarize yourself with the different types of mouth guards that you can use.

 

Let us look at the two main types of sleep apnea mouth guards:

  1. Mandibular Advancement Devices (MADs): This device is built to move your lower jaw slightly forward, opening up your airway and helping you breathe better. You will have to determine how much you need to move your lower jaw to enable easier breathing while sleeping.  Its appearance is similar to that of a retainer, and it can be adjusted according to your needs.
  2. Tongue Retaining Device: It is built in a similar manner to the MADs, but a compartment for the tongue is added- this is meant for individuals whose tongues block the airway. This device keeps the tongue secured in one position.

Consult with a medical professional to figure out which type is the best for you.

 

Are Sleep Apnea Mouth Guards Useful?

Man Putting In A Sleep Apnea Mouth Guard

A majority of people suffering from sleep apnea use CPAP or other therapies to deal with this condition. However, studies have shown that some oral devices are as effective as CPAP in treating obstructive sleep apnea [1].

You must keep in mind that this device is primarily meant to be used for mild sleep apnea cases. There’s no denying the fact that these oral devices are quite useful.

Especially if you’re looking for an alternative to the CPAP device, a sleep apnea mouth guard can be beneficial. The tube used with the CPAP device can be uncomfortable for some people.

Here are some more reasons why you might want to consider using these oral devices.

 

The Upsides: Why You Might Want to Consider Using It.

  • Sleep apnea mouth guards offer a great alternative to devices like the CPAP machine.
  • They don’t need any electricity, and you will save money in your bill.
  • These devices are portable and travel-friendly.
  • Many users found that these oral devices were easier to sleep with than the CPAP machine as there’s no tube to deal with.

But you’ll also want to consider some of the downsides to using this device.

 

Downsides: Reasons as to Why You Might Want to Look at Alternatives.

  • Treatment via mouth guard may not be as effective as CPAP in patients that have a severe case of obstructive sleep apnea [2].
  • Because it is not an electronic machine, you cannot monitor your respiration with this device.
  • Some patients have reported teeth shifts, although this may be a result of an ill-fitting device.
  • These devices aren’t designed to last for more than a year- the materials might warp over time.

If you don’t have a preference between the mouth guard and some of the other sleep apnea therapy devices you can use, then cost might be a deciding factor. 

 

Cost of a Sleep Apnea Mouth Guard:

Sleep Apnea Mouth Guard

The cost of this device can be quite steep. It is around 1800$ to 2000$ for a regular mouth guard [3]. However, keep in mind that this cost includes everything like dental visits and expenses of the apparatus. It also includes any modifications or adjustments that you might need to make the device fit properly.

This cost is much higher than that of a CPAP machine, but you will also need to buy additional appliances with a CPAP machine like the mask and cleaning supplies.

 

A Few Final Words:

You will need to consult a doctor to figure out if this device is the best for you. This choice is also partially based on personal preference. Some people just aren’t comfortable with a mouth guard; however, some people prefer it.

We hope that this article has given you everything you need to make a choice. You might want to check out some of our other blogs to get an idea about what device will work best for you. Keep in mind that the ultimate goal of any sleep apnea therapy device is to help you to have a restful night’s sleep. Make your choice with this goal in mind.

Written by The Sleeplay Team

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