Oral Appliances – Covington, LA

Oral Appliances
for Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea oral appliance of smile model

Custom-fitted oral appliances can be very effective for treating snoring and obstructive sleep apnea, or OSA. As an alternative to a bulky CPAP machine, custom-fitted oral appliances from our Covington, LA dentist are often more comfortable, so you (and your bed partner) can get a restful night of sleep.

An oral appliance for OSA fits much like a sports mouthguard. The device is only worn while you sleep and slightly shifts your lower jaw forward. In this position, your airway remains open and unrestricted by your tongue or tissues in your throat.

Covington dentist Dr. James Moreau has worked closely with New Orleans and St. Tammany physicians to treat snoring and sleep apnea for nearly 10 years. Based on the severity of your condition, your physician and Dr. Moreau will work together to ensure only the safest and most effective treatment.

Why Choose MoreSMILES Dental for
Oral Appliances?

  • Precise Digital Impression System
  • Partners with Local Certified Sleep Doctors
  • Dr. Moreau is a Diplomate of the AADSM

Advantages of an
Oral Appliance

Man putting in sleep apnea oral appliance

CPAP therapy has long been considered the gold standard in the treatment of sleep breathing disorders like OSA. But many patients are intolerant of the bulky, noisy machine and end up not using it. So, oral appliances have moved to the forefront and are widely accepted by professionals as a very effective alternative to CPAP therapy. Here are some of the advantages of using an oral appliance:

  • Nearly or equally as effective as CPAP in most cases
  • Comfortable and easy to use and maintain
  • Portable and easier to travel with
  • Easier to care for and clean.
  • Usually covered by your medical policy, even if you’ve already tried CPAP

Oral appliance therapy is an excellent treatment choice for mild to moderate cases of sleep breathing disorders. However, even in severe cases, under certain conditions, your physician may approve and prescribe an oral appliance. This is because intolerance of other methods of treatment (CPAP) is very high among sleep apnea patients, and therefore, compliance is very low. Rather than leaving the disorder untreated, an oral appliance may provide the necessary level of care to extend your life.

If left untreated, sleep apnea is linked to many diseases and illnesses, including:

  • High blood pressure
  • Heart disease
  • Stroke
  • Depression
  • Irritability and moodiness
  • Headaches
  • Premature death

Fitting an Oral Appliance

Dental team member fitting sleep apnea oral appliance for male patient

At your visit, Dr. Moreau will do a thorough head and neck evaluation to examine your jaw, tongue, and airway. A 3D image of the airway may be necessary to assist in the evaluation. He will review your latest sleep study (PSG, or polysomnogram), so be sure to bring a copy (or we can get a copy from your physician). If Dr. Moreau determines that you are a good candidate for an oral appliance, then we’ll take impressions of your teeth. This will be sent to our lab where your oral appliance will be made.

It’s important to note that this head and neck evaluation is not the same as a dental exam. You will still need to have your teeth and gums checked and cleaned regularly.

When the appliance is ready, you’ll return to our dental office for a fitting. The appliance may need slight adjusting to fit comfortably and effectively. We’ll also spend some time explaining how to keep your oral appliance clean.

Dr. Moreau will want to see you for a follow-up visit to ensure the proper fit of your appliance and to hear how you’re doing. Oral appliances for snoring and sleep apnea usually require several adjustments in the first 6-8 weeks. This is because Dr. Moreau will gradually advance the position of your jaw to get maximum benefit without stressing your muscles. We’ll schedule a 6-month follow-up appointment and then monitor you annually thereafter.

Peace of Mind

Hand holding a sleep apnea oral appliance

Rest assured that Dr. Moreau strictly adheres to the protocols and works in strict compliance with the guidelines written jointly by the American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine and American Academy of Sleep Medicine.

This is important because sleep apnea is a serious medical condition. Oral appliance therapy requires a dental/medical team. Sleep apnea can only be diagnosed by a physician, and for your safety, Dr. Moreau will only treat patients in conjunction with your medical doctor.

Results of Oral
Appliance Therapy

Man and woman peacefully sleeping thanks to sleep apnea treatment

If worn nightly, your new oral appliance for sleep apnea or snoring can help you sleep much, much better. As a result, you will likely feel more alert and functional during the day. In addition, your overall health may improve as well since your nighttime oxygen levels are being maintained.

If you believe that you or someone you love suffers from sleep apnea in Covington, Mandeville, Slidell, or the greater New Orleans area, call us now at (985) 888-0668 for a free screening. Or, if you can no longer tolerate your CPAP machine, contact Dr. Moreau today to schedule a thorough evaluation.