What Dentists Should Know About Sleep Apnea

At Coastal Virginia Sleep Solutions, Dr. William Harper and the rest of our staff are highly experienced in dealing with both obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) and TMJ disorders. It’s important for fellow dentists to know the details of treating sleep apnea in Newport News, VA. Dr. Harper provides some important tidbits for dentists to know.newport news, virginia sleep apnea

Not All Oral Appliances are the Same

Oral devices are a common treatment for sleep apnea. However, a random oral appliance can’t be made and expected to work. An oral appliance is a prescribed medical product that can vary with different patients. The device has to be perfectly made according to the description in the prescription.

Each patient is different and unique. Even when the device is made as prescribed, adjustments may need to be made for it to truly work for the patient. It’s important that physicians work together to use oral device therapy to treat sleep apnea and ensure that they’re doing what’s best for each individual patient.

We Work in Tandem With You

Most of our patients are referred to us from their regular dentist. Like with typical dentist, we work with many insurance companies to get patients the care they need to be covered. We do an extensive 1-2 hour evaluation for all patients’ first visit. We’ll see if there’s dental work that needs to be done before oral appliance therapy can be started. They’ll get those restorations done at your office and can be seen back to move forward with an oral appliance.

We want other dentists to know that we’ll ensure the patients are seen at your office for their traditional restorative and preventative care. As a specialized practice, we’re strictly focused on issues with obstructive sleep apnea and TMJ disorders. If we notice any other issues with their oral health, we’ll communicate with you about our findings to determine the best course of action for the patient.

Our Assessments are Thorough

The assessments we perform on patients are extremely thorough and take around 1-2 hours. After this initial evaluation, we schedule follow-ups as needed to make sure that the patient has received the comfort they’ve been searching for. During follow-ups, we can recommend further sleep testing or adjustment for their oral device to see the results we’re looking for.

During their obstructive sleep apnea assessment, we’ll also examine for signs of TMJ disorders. Typically, oral appliances for sleep apnea shift the way your mandible sits while you sleep. We want to make sure this doesn’t aggravate an existing TMJ disorder. There is a chance that an oral appliance can be adjusted to take care of both of these problems simultaneously.

Treating Sleep Apnea in Newport News, Virginia

Do you have a patient that’s been suffering from sleep apnea? Call us or fill out our referral form today to refer your patient to our office.