Oct 25

Sleeping and breathing disorders, i.e. sleep apnea, snoring, etc., are not only dangerous for your overall health, but they can also destroy your marriage. According to the 2005 National Sleep Foundation survey, 23% of couples that have a partner that snores sleep in separate beds, bedrooms, or on the couch, another 8% have altered their sleep schedules to account for their snoring partner, 7% wear earplugs to drown out the noise from snoring, 38% say that snoring is causing a problem with their relationship, and 27% said that it is affecting their intimate relationships.

So as you can see from this study, it’s critical for your relationship and your health to stop snoring. Many times snoring can be a sign of a far more dangerous health problem, namely obstructive sleep apnea. If you snore it is important to see your physician for a consultation and most likely a sleep study in a sleep laboratory, also called a polysomnogram (PSG).

Whether it is snoring or obstructive sleep apnea as a diagnosis, patients that snore can be helped by either by wearing a CPAP, or by using an oral appliance made by a dentist. The oral appliance, also called a mandibular advancement splint, moves the lower jaw forward eliminating the soft tissue obstruction of the airway, and hence the snoring is also silenced.

Dr. Zach Hodgins of the Dentist’s Studio in Winter Park,FL, offers help to those that snore and those that have obstructive sleep apnea. Dr. Hodgins can be reached for consultation at 407.647.1744 or www.dentiststudio.com

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Oct 19

SUAD Dental Sleep Apnea Appliance

The SUAD™ Device is a dental sleep apnea mouthpiece, otherwise known as a mandibular advancement appliance, that is used by dentists to treat obstructive sleep apnea and snoring. The SUAD™ Device is most effective when treating patients that snore, have mild – moderate obstructive sleep apnea, or cannot sleep while wearing a CPAP.

SUAD™ Device is a heavy duty mandibular advancement device that can withstand the heavy, destructive forces of bruxism, i.e. teeth clenching and grinding, that most often accompanies obstructive sleep apnea.

The SUAD™ Device is a fully adjustable dental sleep apnea appliance that has been approved by the FDA for the treatment of obstructive sleep apnea. It is custom fitted to each patient and fabricated in a dental lab.

If you suffer from obstructive sleep apnea and clench and grind your teeth, then the SUAD™ Device may be the best dental sleep apnea splint for you. Dr. Zach Hodgins, a dentist in Orlando, FL uses the SUAD™ Device to treat sleep apnea patients in his Winter Park, FL office. Call 407.647.1744 or visit www.DentistStudio.com today to arrange for a consultation appointment.

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Oct 18

A Tongue Retaining Device is yet another type of dental sleep apnea appliance that is used to treat patients that suffer from obstructive sleep apnea. Since the main culprit in obstructive sleep apnea is a large tongue falling into the back of the mouth and obstructing the airway, a Tongue Retaining Device is an excellent choice to resolve the airway obstruction. The “TRD” is made from a flexible rubberized material that adapts to the contours of the teeth and dental arches. Unlike almost all of the other dental sleep mouthpieces that are used to treat obstructive sleep apnea, the tongue retaining device does not depend on teeth for retention. Instead, the tongue is held fin a more forward position by the suction that is created within the vacuum bulb in the front of the appliance.

For many patients this is a viable option to help with their sleep apnea problem, however it really comes down to personal preference. Dr. Zach Hodgins, a dentist in Orlando, FL that treats patients that have obstructive sleep apnea and patients that have a CPAP and cannot wear it. If you or your loved one suffers from this deadly condition, consult with your physician or a dentist that has been trained in dental sleep medicine. Dr. Zach Hodgins office works closely with local sleep physicians, pulmonologists, and neurologists to help patients with their sleeping and breathing disorders. Dr. Zach Hodgins is a member of the American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine and The American Academy of Sleep Medicine. Dr Hodgins is also an active member of the I Hate CPAP campaign. I Hate CPAP is a nationwide campaign that helps promote sleeping and breathing disorder awareness and encourages treatment by a qualified healthcare professional. Dr. Hodgins practice is located on the border of Orlando, in Winter Park, FL; he is available for consultation at 407.647.1744. His websites www.DentistStudio.com , http://www.orlando.ihatecpap.com , and www.StopSleepApnea.info are fantastic sources of information on sleep apnea and the treatments that are available.

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Oct 16

Somnomed Sleep Apnea AppliancesThe SomnoDent® MAS is an oral sleep apnea appliance that is used to treat patients that have obstructive sleep apnea. It has a number of features that make it a very popular choice. It is a two piece appliance that is fully adjustable to allow further forward movement to allow for greater airway opening. The dental sleep appliance also has two guidance wings that allow the patient to fully open their mouth, drink water, yawn, without having to remove the appliance.

The SomnoDent® comes in 3 different styles, the acrylic version, the Flex version, and the edentulous. The acrylic version of the Somnodent sleep appliance was their first design. It is rugged and durable and is very effective. The flex version has a comfortable inner surface that molds to the teeth, and a hard acrylic outer portion for strength. Finally the edentulous model is designed for people that suffer from obstructive sleep apnea that wear an upper denture.

The Somnodent is also fairly small in size. So, it allows for the patient to close their mouth fully; it also cuts down on excessive salivation and dribbling of saliva, which are common side effects from oral sleep apnea appliances.

Dr. Zach Hodgins uses the Somnodent sleep apnea appliance to successfully treat patients that suffer from obstructive sleep apnea in his Orlando, FL dental practice. If you wear a CPAP and hate it, call 407.647.1744 for an appointment and be sure to check out his practice website @ www.DentistStudio.com.

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Oct 14

In the next few posts I’ll be reviewing some of the different dental sleep apnea appliances that are used to treat obstructive sleep apnea. These dental sleep apnea appliances are also called mandibular advancement devices, dental sleep apnea mouth pieces, mandibular advancement sleep apnea splints. In essence, they all do basically the same thing. They advance the mandible (the lower jaw) forward.   The differences are in the design and patient comfort.  Since the tongue is connected to the mandible, this forward  movement opens the airway and allows the sleep apnea patient to breathe better. The sleep apnea dental appliance can be used alone, or in combination with a cpap, or pap device. This later is called combination sleep apnea therapy.

In this post I will highlight one of the most widely used dental sleep apnea appliances, the TAP 3.According to the inventor of the appliance, Dr. Thornton, there are approximately 7,000 dentists worldwide that are prescribing the appliance for their patients that suffer with sleep apnea.

As far as the design is concerned, it is quite simple. It consists of an upper and lower acrylic appliance, that connects the upper and lower jaws through a hook and socket mechanism. One of the features that I like the best is the ability to have the patient adjust the appliance themselves. There is a small dial on the front of the lower appliance that allows the patient, dentist, or physician to adjust the appliance as needed. I jokingly call this dial the volume control, because if the patient is snoring the patients husband or wife can adjust the appliance to quite the snoring.

The TAP3 is best used for patients that have mild to moderate obstructive sleep apnea. It is also used successfully for people that are CPAP intolerant. If you fit into either one of these categories please seek guidance from your physician or dentist. Dr. Zach Hodgins practices dentistry in Orlando, FL and has successfully treated many patients with dental sleep apnea appliances. If you need assistance with your sleep apnea treatment, and or you are unhappy with your CPAP please contact Dr. Zach Hodgins‘ office at 407.647.1744

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