It is estimated that 1 in 5 Canadians have some form of obstructive airway disorder and the majority of these people are undiagnosed.
Obstructive sleep apnea(OSA) is what doctors refer to as an “obstructive” airway disorder. When muscles in the airway relax during sleep the tissue can block the flow of air, causing snoring or even choking.
When the body senses the lack of air, it basically wakes up until breathing normalizes. But when the person falls asleep again the cycle restarts — happening anywhere from a few to several hundred times a night.
The consequences of sleep apnea go beyond feeling sleepy. The disorder has been linked to reduced quality of life, work-related injuries, depression, and memory loss.
It’s also associated with a wide variety of other health risks including high blood pressure, diabetes, stroke or cardiovascular disease.
Many patients have been diagnosed and have been fitted with a Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) machine. Many people cannot tolerate a CPAC machine, or do not use it as intended and therefore are not treating their OSA. There are millions of patients who need a diagnosis and treatment, including those who cannot tolerate their CPAP machines and are looking for alternatives. Our dental office staff have been trained to screen and identify patients at risk and Dr Bunt provides high quality customized oral appliances with a high success rates.
After the initial sleep screening assessment, if Dr Bunt is concerned about sleep apnea, he will refer you to a sleep clinic for a sleep study known as a Polysomnogram. A sleep study is covered by OHIP. This is where you will start to build a mutual relationship with your sleep lab, sleep physician, and your sleep dentist, Dr Bunt. Once you have your sleep study results, Dr Bunt can review the report and determine if you fall within the guidelines for compatibility for an oral appliance. Often oral appliances are a covered benefit under your medical insurance.
Once a patient is fitted with an oral appliance a follow up protocol is essential, to ensure that the appliance is adjusted to the optimum position to eliminate snoring and apnea episodes. Dr Bunt will refer you back to a sleep lab for a repeat sleep test within 3 months of your oral appliance therapy.
Oral appliance therapy can be truly life changing which is so rewarding to our team. It is so important to Dr Bunt to be able to improve the quality of someone’s life by improving their sleep quality. We have seen many tears and received many hugs from grateful patients who didn’t even realize how bad they felt until they started to feel the benefits of a good nights sleep with their custom oral appliance.
If you know of anyone would would benefit from this life changing therapy, please call us at 613-392-4757, we would be glad to help!