Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is the most common type of sleep apnea. Individuals with OSA awaken themselves several times a night when lax throat muscles, the back of the tongue, or both, fall over the airway and interrupt their ability to breathe.
Physicians treating sleep apnea usually prescribe a CPAP machine. Patients wear a mask while they sleep that is attached to a machine that delivers just enough air pressure to help stop throat tissues from collapsing over the airway. However, many people find this uncomfortable.
If you have OSA and want an alternative to CPAP, Dr. Rekha Mahajan at Mahajan Dentistry is the sleep apnea dentist Novi Michigan residents turn to for help treating sleep apnea without CPAP machines.
People often discover they have sleep apnea because their spouse or partner witnesses their sleep apnea episodes throughout the night. Signs of OSA involve:
Untreated sleep apnea may contribute to cognitive and physical health problems, including high blood pressure and depression. At your appointment to treat sleep apnea with Dr. Mahajan, she will ask about your symptoms and examine your mouth, tongue, and lower jaw.
A dental appliance that resembles an orthodontic retainer or mouthguard, mandibular advancement devices (MADs) fit comfortably over your lower and upper teeth to gently push the tongue and lower jaw forward. MADs are connected by metal hinges so that one-half of the device slides over the upper teeth and the other half over the lower teeth.
Most cases of obstructive sleep apnea involve the tongue and throat muscles falling over the throat and blocking the airway during sleep. MADs keep the airway open while you sleep, so you don’t awaken yourself from snoring and gasping for air. Dr. Mahajan can also adjust your MAD to the precise dimensions of your lower and upper jaw for optimal effectiveness.