CPAP therapy is often thought of as a parallel to the words “sleep apnea.” CPAP, which stands for continuous positive airway pressure, is a machine that pushes air consistently through the nose and mouth into the lungs in order to prevent the collapse of the airway. Although CPAP is the gold standard of therapy for patients with severe sleep apnea, there are CPAP alternatives. One of these, called oral appliance therapy, is for patients with mild to moderate sleep apnea, as well as those who cannot tolerate or prefer an alternate method of treatment.
No Mask or Machine
While CPAP machines do work for some patients, many patients prefer oral appliance therapy as a CPAP alternative because it successfully treats sleep apnea, even severe patients, it does not require a mask or a machine, it is not disrupting to a bed partner, it is easily transported, it is easy to clean, and there is no need to buy replacement parts.
Convenient for Travel
Additionally, many patients ask about their risk for their airway closing off while they travel or take an afternoon nap. Unfortunately, any time a person with sleep apnea closes their eyes for a snooze, whether 20 minutes or for the night, they are at risk. Due to this, patients often prefer oral appliance therapy because they can easily travel with the appliance and use it on an airplane or on a road trip, and they can also easily insert the appliance for a quick nap. In fact, some patients who have a CPAP will also have an oral appliance for these circumstances.
Besides oral appliance therapy, surgery is another alternative option to CPAP therapy. However, with all surgeries there are associated risks that must be accounted for. The most common surgeries are the uvulopalatopharyngoplasty (UPPP) and the maxillomandibular advancement (MMA).
Superior Sleep and Wellness is here to help you determine the most effective means of treatment for your sleep apnea and what will work best for you. Contact us today. The importance of an effective treatment option cannot be understated, as it can dramatically improve your quality of life by making and keeping you healthier.