Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) Alternatives
Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder where breathing is repeatedly disrupted due to some type of air blockage. Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) machines are among the most popular and effective treatment for sleep apnea. Unfortunately, the mask that fits over the nose and is connected by a tube to a compressed air-pressure machine is considered too bulky or uncomfortable to use by many patients. As a result, sleep apnea treatment without CPAP is needed for those in Manhattan who neither tolerate nor respond to the CPAP apparatus.
It is estimated that 90 million people in North America have mild to moderate breathing issues that lead to apnea and snoring. Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) affects up to 17% of adults in the United States. The resultant sleep disruption can lead to a host of problems such as:
- Reduced lifespan
- Increase risk for stroke and heart attack
- ADD / ADHD
- Gastric reflux
- Weight Gain
- Daytime drowsiness
- Memory changes
OSA can be characterized as pauses in breathing during sleep. The muscles in the throat, mouth or tongue narrow to the point of blocking the windpipe, thereby restricting oxygen. The sleeper gasps for air , wakes up briefly and fall backs to sleep. This cycle repeats itself from 5 to 100 times per hour. Maintaining the flow of air in the upper airway is easily achieved with CPAP therapy. However, if the machine is uncomfortable, there are Manhattan sleep apnea treatments without CPAP.
Also known as mandibular advancing devices, the dental devices are typically made of plastic or silicone and look like a sports mouth guard. They may be hinged and they position your lower jaw in a way to keep your airway open while sleeping.
Sleep apnea is worst when sleeping on your back. Devices can be deployed to prevent patients from sleeping in the supine position.
The “PAP” in BiPAP and CPAP are the same. However, BiLevel uses two pressures – an inhale and lower exhale pressure for those that have lung issues, including COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease).
There is a correlation between obesity and breathing issues while sleeping. Weight loss can mitigate sleep apnea. But given the time it takes to lose weight as well as the struggle for some to keep the weight off, bariatric surgery is another option. However, the risk of complications from surgery has to also be carefully considered.
This outpatient surgical procedure inserts straw-like pieces into the roof of the mouth to stiffen the area which helps prevent or reduces the likelihood of the airway collapsing.
Surgery is performed on the tongue, jaw, or throat to keep key airway muscles open. While effective, this is an invasive procedure and should be considered only after other options have been eliminated.
Expiratory Positive Airway Pressure devices work by creating resistance while exhaling breath. Oftentimes, an adhesive, like a bandage, is placed on the nostril.
Oral Pressure Therapy
OPT uses vacuum pressure to suction the soft palate towards the middle of the mouth to widen the nasal airway and eliminate obstruction.
Continuous Negative External Pressure
cNEP deploys a sucking pressure outside of the neck area in order to keep the airway open during sleep. This relatively new technology has not yet been widely deployed.
Losing an hour of sleep per night for a week is the equivalent of pulling an all-nighter weekly. That is not good. If you or a loved one are experiencing daytime drowsiness or any other of the symptoms detailed above, book an appointment to be evaluated by Dental Wellness Airway. Unfortunately, sleep medicine may have unintended consequences if your lack of restorative sleep stems from oxygen shortages while sleeping.
The mind and body need restorative sleep to recharge from activities and to process the day’s experience. The soundness of sleep directly impacts our wellness and ability to enjoy life. Some relationships are even strained by snoring or sleep apnea.
If you’ve previously been assessed for sleep apnea but want sleep apnea treatment without using a CPAP machine, be encouraged that doctors, dentists, and sleep specialists have developed several alternatives for sleep apnea treatment. At Dental Wellness Airway, our team understands that excellent oral health, adequate sleep, proper breathing, and balanced nutrition are critical for total body wellness. Our comprehensive dental exam considers multiple factors to inform our diagnoses and we work with other medical professionals as needed to achieve the best possible outcome for you.