Dental Sleep Medicine Hampton Roads, VA

Dental Sleep Medicine is an exciting, growing field of dentistry. It diagnoses and treats sleep-related breathing disorders, including snoring and obstructive sleep apnea treatments. Snoring is a common problem that can disrupt the snorer’s and their partner’s sleep.

Sleep apnea is a more serious condition that can lead to health problems such as high blood pressure and heart disease. Dental sleep medicine is a safe and effective way to treat both conditions.

Dr. William Harper is a Diplomate in the American Board of Dental Sleep Medicine. He is an active member of the American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine (AADSM). His credentials reassure patients that they’re getting quality care. He meets all recognized guidelines in the treatment of sleep disorders and sleep apnea.

Dr. Harper is currently the only dentist in the area to have completed this training and certification. This includes a Dental Sleep Medicine Mini-Residency at the University of North Carolina.

Why is Training in Sleep Medicine Important for Patients?

Sleep apnea diagnoses are increasing. This means that different treatments and therapies are also increasing. The most common treatments and therapies address snoring, sleep-disordered breathing, and sleep apnea.

Dentists can offer oral appliance therapy to patients with more moderate forms of sleep disorders. However, the outcome and impact on a patient’s overall health may not be optimal without proper training and certification.

Dr. William Harper has committed many hours to additional sleep medicine training. He provides comprehensive, well-informed care for sleep-related disorders and snoring. This additional training and education in sleep medicine put him in the top 1% of dentists for sleep treatment.

Dr. Harper and the Coastal Sleep & TMJ team work closely with local sleep medicine physicians. We will ensure that the prescribed treatment is in the best interest of our patients and their health.

Coastal Sleep & TMJ is your local resource in the Peninsula/Williamsburg area for personalized sleep disorder care. Our team works with you individually to evaluate your needs. We schedule testing to determine your diagnosis. Then, we continue to follow up to ensure that you’re progressing correctly.


American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine logo

American Board of Dental Sleep Medicine logo

Dental sleep medicine focuses on treating sleep-related breathing disorders using oral appliances. People commonly call this oral appliance therapy.

Every patient receives a custom-fitted appliance to wear when they go to bed. These appliances last years and may even last a lifetime. Dr. William Harper can assess your sleeping habits at our office. We take impressions to prepare a custom appliance to help alleviate sleep-related breathing issues.

The Importance of Quality Sleep

Conditions like sleep apnea have more consequences on your life than you may realize. When you leave this untreated, it continues to get worse, and the effects get more severe.

Sleep is critical for you to function normally in your everyday life. Too little sleep can compromise your job, education, and socializing with friends. It can mess with your brain and cause detrimental health problems, too.

Sleep apnea makes you wake up multiple times throughout the night, even if you don’t realize it. You can believe you’ve gotten eight hours of sleep but still wake up tired and groggy. You’re tired throughout the day and at risk of falling asleep while driving or sitting at your desk at work.

Over time, people with sleep disorders are more likely to suffer from depression. It may also impact your memory. Sleep is important for our brains to process information and remember things.

A lack of sleep can cause various health problems. People with sleep apnea are likelier to have high blood pressure and bad cholesterol levels.

Your blood oxygen is lower, but your blood sugar is higher, making diabetes harder to manage if you have it. The immune system is weaker, so you’re more prone to infections. And you have an increased risk of vascular problems like stroke and heart failure.

Dental Sleep Medicine FAQs

Dental sleep medicine treats sleep apnea and ensures you get a good night’s sleep. Read the answers to these commonly asked questions to know more.

What is dental sleep therapy?

Dental sleep therapy is the practice of treating patients who struggle with sleep-related breathing issues. Dental sleep therapy uses COAT (Continuous Open Airway Therapy) to treat sleep apnea and snoring.

How long does an oral appliance for sleep apnea last?

On average, oral appliances for sleep apnea last anywhere from one to two years. Some patients may need an early replacement, but this is fairly rare. The appliance typically wears down after a year or two and becomes slightly less effective.

What does CPAP stand for?

CPAP stands for continuous positive airway pressure. It is one of the most common treatments for OSA (Obstructive Sleep Apnea). A CPAP machine is effective for sleep-related breathing disorders.

However, it is not the only option. Many patients are now discovering the benefits of oral sleep devices that are much smaller and less bulky.

How can dentists treat sleep apnea?

Dental sleep medicine uses oral appliances to treat snoring and sleep apnea. Our office can help assess the severity of your sleep apnea and treat it to reduce symptoms.

Can I cure my sleep apnea?

CPAP and oral appliances can effectively treat sleep apnea but are not cures. The only way to cure sleep apnea is by losing weight or getting surgery to remove excess tissue from the throat.

Do tongue stabilizers work?

Studies have shown that tongue stabilizing devices may decrease snoring by up to 68% in some patients. These devices work on a case-by-case basis. Call our office today to schedule a consultation.

We are proud to be one of the area’s leading providers of sleep apnea services. If you want to learn more about our offerings, please schedule an appointment today. You can also give us a call and speak with one of our team members directly. We look forward to hearing from you soon!