How Can a Dentist Help Treating Sleep Apnoea?
Dentists are often the first health care professional to be aware that you may be experiencing symptoms of sleep apnoea. By observing your mouth, dentists may notice less evident symptoms that point to signs of OSA.
Dentists are perfectly placed to assist in the creation and fitting of a mandibular splint. In fact, they are the only health practitioners who can supply and fit these appliances to treat sleep related disorders, including obstructive sleep apnoea and snoring.
If you have been diagnosed with a sleep disorder and recommended that a dental appliance is suitable for you, your next step will be to visit a dentist who has undertaken appropriate training and education to become an accredited dentist in sleep medicine. All Sound Sleeper dentists are accredited and qualified to provide these services, to find you closest one use our online search tool here.
Your dentist will assess from a dental perspective if a splint will be an effective treatment option for you, taking into account the structure of your teeth. Moulds and impressions will then be taken that will be used to fabricate your custom made splint.
Once a dental appliance has been fabricated for you, your dentist will work closely with your medical practitioner and sleep physician in the continuous assessment and evaluation of the effectiveness of treatment. This includes regular follow up appointments to ensure that your sleep apnoea symptoms are no longer an issue and to also ensure correct ongoing use of the dental appliance.
What is the Dental Appointment Like?
If it has been recommended by your sleep physician that your visit a dentist for the purpose of an oral appliance then there are a few simple stages your dentist will take you through.
- At the initial visit, your Sound Sleeper dentist will examine the status of your oral health to determine that an oral appliance will be appropriate for you. Moulds and impressions will be taken and these are then sent to SomnoMed’s manufacturing facility.
- At your next appointment, your dentist will fit the newly made appliance and instruct you on how to properly use, remove and care for the device.
- You will also need to attend what are known as ‘Titration’ visits regularly with your dentist. At these visit, your dentist will assess the position of the appliance and ensure it remains optimal. You may be referred back to you sleep physician for follow up sleep studies so that the device remains most effective.
Do I Need a Referral Before Seeing a Dentist?
You do not need a referral from another health professional to see a dentist relating your sleep disorder. However, you will need to have been assessed by a trained sleep physician and undertaken a sleep study prior to seeing a dentist.