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Sleep Apnea & Mandibular Advancement Devices

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Sleeping disorders affect up to 70 million adults in the United States. Of those people, around 25 million have suffered from sleep apnea. Sleep apnea is a condition that causes you to stop breathing for short periods while you are sleeping. Typically the most common form of treatment for sleep apnea is a CPAP machine, but this device doesn’t always work for everybody. Some people have found relief and a better night's sleep by using a Mandibular Advanced Device, also known as MAD. For mild cases of sleep apnea, a MAD device is often recommended.

What Is Sleep Apnea

Obstructive sleep apnea is the most common type of sleep apnea. If you are experiencing obstructive sleep apnea then your airway is becoming blocked or collapses while you are sleeping. When your airway is blocked, then you essentially stop breathing. These pauses in your breathing might only last for just a few seconds or they may last for several minutes. When these pauses occur they interfere with your sleep and cause you to shift from a deep sleep to a lighter sleep. If you suffer from this condition then you will often feel sleepy during the day because you aren’t getting a deep, full night’s rest. You will usually snore and can wake up in the morning with a dry mouth and/or headache.

If you start to experience dry mouth, then consult with us at Smiles for Health today. You also might want to and consider adding a mouthwash to your oral hygiene routine.

What Does a Mandibular Advancement Device Do?

A MAD helps to reduce the symptoms and effects of sleep apnea. It moves your jaw into a forward position while you are sleeping. By pushing your lower jaw forward you are helping to expand the airway, and ultimately reducing the number of breathing pauses you experience while sleeping.

As mentioned earlier, a CPAP machine is usually the popular choice for treating sleep apnea. So you might be thinking why should I get a MAD device instead? While researchers have found that there is statistically no difference between the treatment and improvement the two devices provide, they did notice something between the devices. They found that patients who used the MAD devices were more likely to comply with it and that they preferred using the MAD device over the CPAP machine. In the past, you may have tried a CPAP machine and didn’t like it, so it might be time to switch up treatment options and switch to a MAD device. Reach out to us at Smiles for Health today to discuss your options!

What Conditions a Mandibular Advancement Device Can Treat

Sleep apnea is the most common condition when it comes to MAD, but that isn’t the only sleep issue it can treat. These devices can also be helpful for patients who snore and/or for those who grind their teeth. It should be noted that sleep apnea can sometimes lead to bruxism, or grinding the teeth at night, so using a MAD can help kill two birds with one stone.

How to Get a Mandibular Advancement Device

You can find MADs for sale online or at your local drugstore, but for the best fit and the best results, you will want to see us at Smiles for Health. We can have the device custom fit to your teeth and jaw. We will take a mold of your teeth and have the device created based on that mold. Typically, MADs are made from a durable, plastic-like material.

Potential Drawbacks of a Mandibular Advancement Device

Even though MAD can help treat your sleep apnea or other sleep-related issues, there are a few drawbacks to consider. One of the biggest drawbacks of using a MAD is the potential for developing arthritis in the temporal mandibular joint or experiencing symptoms of TMJ disorder.

Working with us at Smiles for Health and having a MAD created that fits your mouth might help to reduce the risk of jaw joint problems and pain. This is one major reason to come to us for your MAD and not go with an over-the-counter option. If you have sleep apnea, grind your teeth, or snore regularly, schedule an appointment with us today to learn more about how a MAD can help you finally get a good night’s sleep.

At Smiles For Health, we offer sleep apnea services so you can sleep comfortably. Call today to schedule your appointment!

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