Are you or your child always tired?
Do you have trouble focusing?
Are you often irritable and impatient?
If so, you may be experiencing disrupted sleep, a condition that can affect the quality of sleep and can negatively effect the quality of your overall health. For patients with Sleep Apnea or disrupted sleep, breathing is impacted by a restricted airway. During sleep, the soft tissues of the throat can be compressed, causing the airway to be narrowed or even closed off.
While receiving early treatment can offer the most effective results, older teens and adults can also experience the benefits of orthodontic treatment for sleep apnea. We strive to provide all our patients with the latest orthodontic treatments that can offer relief from the complications caused by sleep apnea.
A child’s facial and dental growth and development can be significantly impacted by habits such as thumb sucking, mouth breathing and poor tongue positioning. New orthodontic treatments work to correct malocclusions caused by these habits through proper nasal breathing, tongue position and closed lips.
The position and shape of the teeth and jaws has also been connected to sleep disorders such as snoring and sleep apnea which affect millions of people of all ages. Orthodontics can be used to correct malocclusions that effect jaw formation, proper bite configuration, and other orthodontic concerns.
Airway Obstruction: Adenoids
In addition to decreasing oxygen levels, Sleep Apnea may cause other health complications such as:
Orthodontic Treatment Options
Oral Appliance Therapy
Many adults who suffer from sleep apnea may be able to find relief using a custom removable oral appliance that adjusts the position of the lower jaw and tongue during sleep. These customized appliances can help to maintain an open, unobstructed airway when worn during sleep. Please be sure to bring your oral appliance in to your appointments to make sure it is fitting properly.
Rapid Palatal Expander (RPE)
Used to widen or expand the upper jaw, a palatal expander can be used as an effective treatment for patients with sleep apnea. Expanding the upper jaw also effects the floor of the nasal cavity, helping to increase air flow and making breathing easier. PEDs are common orthodontic treatment for children, and have been partnered with tonsillectomies for maximum treatment results.
Orthognathic correction for sleep apnea is often conducted in stages and the course of treatment can last a few months up to one year or more. The jawbones are adjusted to reposition the tongue and palate so that the upper airway is widened to provide unencumbered breathing. In addition to improved breathing and better sleep, orthognathic patients may also notice improved function and appearance when treatment is complete.