Obstructive Sleep Apnoea (OSA) is when a person stops their breathing for prolonged periods or breathes insufficiently during sleep. Left untreated, it can result in interrupted sleep, fatigue, a lack of focus during the day, and, in more severe cases it leads to high blood pressure, depression, and, up to 5x increased chance of strokes and heart disease
The traditional treatment for OSA has always been to use a CPAP machine. Unfortunately many of you out there simply can’t tolerate using the machine and have not been informed about mandibular advancement splints (MAS) or other alternatives. There is no doubt that CPAP is the absolute gold standard treatment for OSA but if you can’t tolerate the machine an MAS is better than doing nothing. In fact a recent study from 2013 of obese patients with severe OSA found no long term health differences when evaluating sleepiness, quality of life, neurocognitive ability and importantly Blood Pressure after evaluating over 2 years. What is important about this study is that the subjects were obese, with large necks and therefore assumed by most practitioners to be not suitable for treatment with MAS.
Further more at TMJ Centre Melbourne we have found that combining breathing retraining, myofunctional exercises, chiropractic adjustments and use of MAS has helped many of our patients. So if you’re struggling to use your CPAP machine don’t just ignore the problem.