When should I change my sleep apnea dental appliance?

This question was asked in Anchorage, Alaska on 03/20/2013.
When should I change my sleep apnea dental appliance? Is it something that needs to be done regularly? What would the annual cost be for these replacements?

Doctors Answers (7)

Susan M. Welch
Answered on: 5/13/2013

My first question would be why do you think you need to change your dental sleep apnea appliance? One of the most used OSA dental orthotics has a 2 year warranty, so that's a place to start. What needs to be done "regularly" is cleaning it. Some appliances require parts to be maintained, like the EMA (it requires elastics that are changed frequently, depending on the stretching of them). Others require maintenance with cleaning, alone. A denture cleaner, brand doesn't matter, is usually the recommended product, and the appliance is soaked for a minimum of 30 minutes. At my practice, when the patient comes in for annual follow ups (if they are not a "dental" patient in my office) we professionally clean their appliances in the ultrasonic cleaner, with a solution that helps dissolve the debris and tarter that can build up on them. When my patients ask, I explain it is entirely dependent on the patient (how hard are you on the appliance, how well do you care for it, etc). Because it is durable medical equipment device, I've seen some medical policies cover one, every 12 months. Some allow replacement every 3 or 5 years, and still other policies are one per lifetime of the patient. So, it's best to call your medical insurance and ask what their policy states. I hope my answer has been helpful.

Jana P. Kaimal, MD, FCCP
Answered on: 4/5/2013 7

Your best option is to speak with the provider who prescribed the device for you. They will have the most accurate information.

Daron Scherr, MD, DABSM
Answered on: 4/5/2013 1

I believe the ADA recommends follow up with your dentist a minimum of yearly. Mine tend to last about 3 years.

Timothy J. Delcambre, DDS, MHA
Answered on: 3/22/2013

Most sleep apnea appliances need to be replaced when broken or worn out. This requires full cost for replacement. The type of appliance I generally use requires occasional relining of a thermoplastic liner at a cost of approximately $250.00. My personal sleep apnea appliance (yes, I do wear one) I have used for 5 years with cleaning maintenance only.

J. Douglas Hudson, MD, DABSM
Answered on: 3/22/2013

When you should change your dental device used to help control your sleep apnea depends on several factors. One obvious factor is if it is too worn to be effective. Other factors include any changes in mood or alertness which may be related to in effectiveness. Your dentist would be the best adviser. The cost may range from $1500-$2,000.

SomnoDiagnostics, Inc.
Answered on: 3/22/2013

Thank you for your question about dental appliances. The dentist that provided your appliance should answer that as this would be brand specific.

Jeannine Louise Gingras, MD
Answered on: 3/21/2013

You will need to ask the dentist who made the device. And you should be having regular visits with your sleep MD and Dentist.