Frequently Asked Questions

General Questions

I have heard that oral appliance therapy for the treatment of sleep apnea is not very successful, is that true?
Oral appliances are an effective treatment option for obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), as it not only improves an individual’s apnea-hypopnea index, an index used to determine the severity of sleep apnea, but also various physiological and behavioral outcomes as well. The American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM) lists oral appliance therapy as a first line of treatment for patients with mild to moderate OSA, as well as severe patients that cannot tolerate CPAP or prefer an alternative option to CPAP. Due to the high noncompliance of CPAP, oral appliance therapy is often more effective for patients even with severe sleep apnea due to compliance with the device. However, oral appliance therapy may not be effective for every individual.
Do I need an overnight sleep study in order to get an oral appliance?

In order to receive an oral appliance, you will need to have an overnight sleep study. However, unlike in the past where you had to go into a sleep lab, home sleep tests are now available which allow you to do the recording in the comfort of your own home. We adhere to the guidelines and standards of the American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine and American Academy of Sleep Medicine, which indicate that the presence or absence of sleep apnea must be determined before treatment with oral appliance therapy is administered. The initial or baseline test not only indicates the presence or absence of sleep apnea, but will also act as a reference mechanism to determine effectiveness of treatment. In other words, if you want an oral appliance to reduce or eliminate your snoring, we still require a sleep study to be completed.

How long do oral appliances last?
The answer to this question depends on the care and the maintenance of the appliance, if the patient grinds their teeth at night (bruxism), the type of appliance, and other similar factors. Typically the lifetime for an appliance is around 5 years but they can last years longer.
How much does an oral appliance cost and will my insurance cover it?
Superior Sleep and Wellness bills all medical insurances. Medical coverage, including deductible and coinsurance amounts, varies greatly based on each individual’s specific insurance plan. During your consultation, we will provide your financial obligation to you based on the criteria above. Additionally, Superior Sleep and Wellness provides various financial options for your convenience. Our goal is to minimize all out of pocket expenses to each patient, in order to mitigate cost being an obstacle to treatment.
Are there any side effects to wearing an oral appliance?
The most common short-term side effects of oral appliance therapy may include excessive salivation, sore jaws or teeth, jaw joint pain, dry mouth, gum pain, loosening of teeth and short-term bite changes. Most of the side effects are minor and resolve quickly on their own or with minor adjustment to the appliance. Additionally, we give our patients specific instructions on how to relax the jaw and muscles each morning. Rarely do we find that a patient has to stop wearing the appliance due to side effects.
Are oral appliances comfortable?
Superior Sleep and Wellness provides each patient with a custom-fabricated oral appliance, which makes the appliance comfortable and easier to wear. Additionally, different appliances are made with different materials, so we will select one in accordance with your needs and desires.

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