I have been successfully using a CPAP machine now for three years, but would very much like an alternative for such things as camping and travel. I need professional objective advice on mandibular advancement devices and recommendations for sleep-disorder-trained dentists. I also would like advice on insurance. I have PEIA medical and Delta Dental.
Doctors Answers (3)
If you haven't found a good device yet or are still looking. A dentist (who has adequate experience treating sleep apnea) can be quite helpful. Also you might look into Provent. This is a a new product that can be great for patients who have sleep apnea and travel. It is a special sticker that you wear over your nose. It has a unique valve that can treat sleep apnea and is very convenient.
Every company which manufactures mandibular advancement devices claims to the best. Each of these devices has some positive features but most do not claim to be as good as CPAP therapy, just improvement in the severity of the apnea. Many insurance companies will help with payment for the device. I am not endorsing the new ResMed device as I have not prescribed it as yet. It is new on the market and claims to be as good or better than most of the devices available. You are correct, a dentist trained in sleep disorders is your best next step. The national society of dentists who form the American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine is a source for a listing of local dentists who specialize in sleep disorders.
Oral appliances are indicated for mold to moderate sleep apnea if a patient is intolerant of CPAP. If you are doing well then you should stand pat with your current treatment. If you are doing poorly and want to explore an alternative you should scheduel an appointment in your area witha dentist who specializes in dental sleep medicine and can make recommendation of an oral appliance either a tongue retaining device or a mandibular advancement device. Even with insurance the out of pocket cost could be considerable anywhere from $1800-6000 to manufacture the device. This can be adjusted though and is a viable alternative for sleep apnea treatment.