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Is Your CPAP Causing Problems with Your Teeth?

Australia has a relatively high rate of sleep apnea. This condition can occur if the upper airway continually becomes obstructed while the patient is sleeping, thus limiting or totally preventing airflow. The medical term for this condition is obstructive sleep apnea. Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machines and dental appliances, sometimes known as mouth guards, are two of the most popular treatments for sleep apnea. However, some number of patients thinks CPAP is not very efficient for them and are considering other alternatives, but CPAP remains the best approach and the most widely used method for sleep apnea therapy.

The Lie That Is Sold About CPAP Machines

In order to treat sleep apnea, CPAP machine is frequently recommended. However, it is associated with a number of potential adverse effects. The most frequent problem reported by cpap machine users is the presence of an air leak. If the mask does not fit you completely, air might get out around the edges when you move around in your sleep and cause you to feel uncomfortable. Leaks are more likely to occur with masks that are larger, such as those that cover both the mouth and the nose. Your therapy might be jeopardised if there is a leak since the pressure it delivers could be reduced.

If your CPAP mask does not fit correctly, it might leave markings on your skin, which could eventually develop into sores or even ulcers, particularly along the bridge of your nose. People who already have sensitive skin are at an increased risk of developing a rash or skin irritation, particularly when using masks made of latex. Another typical adverse effect is that you may get dryness in your nose or mouth, which frequently coincides with leakage. This might result in nosebleeds and could potentially cause damage to your gums and teeth if left untreated. When your mouth is open, air can easily leave, which might cause your mouth or tongue to get dry.

When you initially begin using CPAP therapy, you may discover that it is easy to breathe in but that it is more challenging to breathe out against the pressure. This may get better with time, but the effort may also cause you to have trouble sleeping. It’s possible that the air pressure from the CPAP could cause you to end up with air in your stomach, which will result in you belching continuously throughout the night. This may result in sleep disruptions and may also keep a spouse awake.

Oral Complications Caused by CPAP Machines

Taking care of the machinery could be inconvenient at times. In order to avoid drying out of the oral tissues, CPAP machines require the use of distilled water in their reservoirs. The process of using distilled water can be time-consuming for the person who is wearing the mask, and it calls for careful attention when it comes to cleaning and sanitising the machine, the tubing, and the mask. Lack of care for the CPAP devices are also noticeable with people who have used the device for some times, they not take less care of their machine. 

Dental and skeletal abnormalities are known to develop in association with prolonged CPAP therapy, which is recognised to be a major adverse impact. Any force or pressure that is maintained on the teeth for an extended period of time has the potential to produce tooth movement. As a consequence of this, it is logical to assume that flare of the anterior teeth would take place as a result of the application of positive pressure to the back of the tongue, which serves to move the tongue forwards in the oral cavity and force it against the front teeth. Any force or pressure that is maintained on the teeth for an extended period of time has the potential to produce tooth movement. That is to say, there have been occurrences of teeth shifting as a result of using a CPAP machine that have been reported. This can result in significant difficulties with biting and chewing.

Alternatives to CPAP Machines 

Oral appliances, when fitted by trained dentists, are an excellent treatment option for many patients who are looking for CPAP alternatives, either because they are unable to use CPAP therapy or because they do not want to use it. Although they are available in a wide variety of styles, the majority of the time they are manufactured to the customer’s specifications. The dental device’s primary function is to maintain the airway’s open position while the patient is sleeping, therefore preventing the airway from compressing and obstructing the natural passage of air during normal breathing.

Varieties of Oral Equipment

Tongue retaining device: a device that keeps the tongue in place. This device, which is used far less frequently than the MAD. It is a splint that keeps the airway open by holding the tongue in place.

Mandibular advancement device (MAD)

MADs, which are the most common mouth devices for treating sleep apnea, are quite similar to the mouth guards that are used during athletic competition. They are designed to fit snugly over both the upper and lower dental arches, and they contain hinges that allow the lower jaw to be moved forwards in a very small manner. You have the extra benefit of being able to adjust the amount of advancement with certain of these devices, such as the Thornton Adjustable Positioner (TAP), which is one of them.

People who suffer from mild sleep apnea, particularly those who sleep on their backs or stomachs, may find that using an oral device is beneficial to their condition. It’s possible that the dental gadgets will make you sleep better and cut down on how often and how loudly you snore. People are also more likely to adopt these popular CPAP alternatives since oral devices are easy to use and maintain. 

If you have been given a dental gadget, you should get it checked out as soon as possible to see whether or not it is functioning properly. It is crucial to obtain regular checkups in order to have any necessary adjustments or replacements made to your sleep apnea treatment. This will allow you to achieve the greatest relief possible from your condition. In the event that you are experiencing discomfort or shifts in the way that you bite, your dentist or orthodontist may be able to make adjustments in order to rectify the situation.

In comparison to uvulopalatopharyngoplasty (UPPP), the conventional surgical technique for apnea, in which the surgeon removes soft tissue from the back of the throat, dental devices have also been demonstrated to manage sleep apnea over the long term. This has been shown to be the case.

More to read: How to Select the Right CPAP Machine