What Is The Alternative To A CPAP Machine? by Hunt Valley, MD Dentist Dr. Joel Nathanson.
What Is The Alternative To A CPAP Machine?
The oral appliance is an alternative to the CPAP machine. As you can see, there are two parts to it. Part of it goes on the upper jaw. Part goes on the lower jaw. And it brings the lower jaw forward.
This does two things. It moves the base of the tongue away from the back of the throat, and so it opens the airway that way. The other thing that it does is it helps to tighten the muscles in the neck, and that also helps the airway to stay open.
With a CPAP you have air going through the airway. That’s a process that’s known as internal splinting. With the muscles holding the airway open the way that it does when an oral appliance is used, that’s called external splinting, and that holds the airway open as well.
Our Response to the Coronavirus (COVID-19)
Effective 5 P.M today (03/24), the Maryland Department of Health issued a directive stating that health care providers “shall perform only medical procedures that are critically necessary for the maintenance of health for a patient. All elective and nonurgent medical [and dental] procedures and appointments shall cease effective at 5 p.m., Tuesday, March 24, 2020 and shall not be performed for the duration of the catastrophic health emergency.”
So the question you may have in response to this is “What would be considered an ‘urgent’ condition for which I SHOULD seek treatment?” To answer this question with regard to dental emergencies, the American Dental Association (ADA) has published the following guidance:
Dental care that you should have taken care of by a dentist at this time:
Bleeding that doesn’t stop
Painful swelling in or around your mouth
Pain in a tooth, teeth or jaw bone
Gum infection with pain or swelling
After surgery treatment (dressing change, stitch removal)
Broken or knocked-out tooth
Denture adjustment for people receiving radiation or other treatment for cancer
Snipping or adjusting wire of braces that hurts your cheek or gums
Biopsy of abnormal tissue
Dental care you can reschedule for another time:
Regular visits for exams, cleanings, and x-rays
Regular visits for braces
Removal of teeth that aren’t painful
Treatment of cavities that aren’t painful
If you do have a true dental emergency (as described above), call your dentist or contact our office. STAY SAFE!