What can I expect after getting oral appliance therapy for apnea? I'm schedule to go in and talk to my dentist about an oral appliance for sleep apnea, but i'd like a little heads up about what to expect afterwards before I go. Will an oral appliance chan

Depends. There are a number of things that can happen as far as side effect like mild pain, teeth not fitting together in the morning, and possible tooth movement. Follow up care is key to improving the success rate. Not all patients find success. Seeing a dentist with significant experience and education treating this life threatening condition can help with side effects and improve success.
Sleep . Sleep apnea is the interruption of your normal sleep pattern by a failure to breath consistently. Your breath is arrested by the tissue of your throat falling back and blocking the breathing airway. When you are are accumulating so much carbon dioxide in your blood stream that your body sensors tell you that you are close to being poisoned by it an emergency response waken you and you choke and splutter until the airway is open and you can get a gasp of air this process blows off some of the carbon dioxide and allows you to return to a fitful sleep. You will notice it is not about the oxygen so necessary to keep your brain alive and you body functioning. People who have apnea can suffer brain damage and even die from suffocation. You dentist is goin to talk to you about a device worn in the mouth that will pull the lower jaw forwards so that the tissues of the throat are less like to block the airway while you sleep. This can be a life saving device. What can you expect? Well a few days getting used to the appliance, may be some additional dental appointment for adjustments. You can expect to sleep more restfully and not be so tired during the day which prevents you from thinking clearly. You might actually live longer. It is possible that you will have bad breath from mouth breathing, so get used to needing to be extra good about oral hygeine, brush floss and rinse! dr neil mcleod dds dentistry that lasts - quality that counts.
The . The most effective dental devices work by pushing the lower jaw forward, thereby opening the air passage behind the tongue. Most are custom made by dentists and are adjusted periodically to find the most comfortable and effective position for the individual patient. Some things to expect: dry mouth when it occurs is usually transient and can often be compensated for by simple changes to the appliance. A small subgroup of patients has persistent dry mouth that is impossible to accept. There are patients with sjorgren’s syndrome, medication side effects and other conditions that predispose them to dry mouth and there are many over the counter and prescription remedies available. I have found two products that patients report great success with use. The first is rinsinol by oral b. It is not marketed as a product for dry mouth but as a product for treating oral ulcers but it provides excellent coverage of mucosal tissues. The second product is a prescription item made specifically to treat oral mucositis associated with chemotherapy. I use it in an off label method with amazing success. The product is gel-clair and it comes packaged in a box of 21 small packages meant to be diluted with two tablespoons of water and rinsed around the mouth. I found the product roughly equivalent to rinsinol when used in that fashion and very expensive. I have many patients who use this product full strength and apply a small amount to their tissues and find it miraculous in how it controls dry mouth all night long. An advantage to the off label method is one package can be used for several nights making it inexpensive to use. It also works extremely well for oral ulcers in its undiluted form. A problem frequently seen with oral appliances is pet dogs and cats have an affinity for eating, chewing and destroying them. Patients also are more likely to leave an oral appliance somewhere because it so small and does not require a special case. Bite changes are a more common phenomenon with oral appliances and are also easily reversible early on. When the patient wears the appliance that keeps their jaw in a different position for eight hours healing occurs in joints and adaptation will often occur. Dentists usually give their patients exercisers or positioners to return to their original position. Patients are often not aware of the bite changes. When patients are aware of the changes about 50% find them to be favorable. It is rare to see a patient discontinue use due to the bite changes. Dentists are often more upset with the bite changes than the patients are. There is also a subgroup of patients who experience tm joint problems or muscle pain when wearing appliances. These problems are almost never a reason to not use oral appliances but they need to be addressed and treated by a dentist trained to deal with TMJ disorders. The remarkable fact is that 90–95% of oral appliance users report long-term satisfaction with their treatment. The problems associated with appliance use are usually easily solved or well tolerated by patients. Many patients who start with treating their sleep apnea problems find that correcting the underlying TMJ disorders an advantage not a problem. Similarly, many patients who start seeking treatment for TMJ disorders find that they move on to treating their sleep problems. Because the underlying problems are the same it turns out that treating either problem usually helps both problems. Good luck!