Managing Sleep Apnea in San Rafael
Learn the steps to managing your sleep apnea for the long run.
Like any other disorder, sleep apnea requires long-term treatment and management. At Jennifer Buchanan, DDS, providing an oral appliance and physical therapy instructions is only part of the treatment process. During the weeks, months, and even years following treatment, we closely monitor your smile to ensure treatment is working correctly and make adjustments as needed.
When you visit Dr. Buchanan after your sleep study for your initial consultation, we will go over the results of the exam together as well as determine how physical obstruction is occurring. As an experienced orofacial pain specialist, Dr. Buchanan has extensive knowledge of the jaw and airways as well as experience with multiple appliance modalities. This unique skill set allows her to provide great help to physicians and their patients with sleep-disordered breathing problems.
Making sure your device is a perfect fit is a huge part of ensuring that your device is comfortable and working effectively for you. After taking initial measurements and impressions, patients have images taken at a local lab, we work with radiology to get the right shape positioning. Once the appliance has been made, we’ll ask you to use it for some time then conduct a home sleep test to ensure the appliance is working correctly and is not compromising your bite.
In the weeks and months after your initial treatment, we’ll schedule regular follow-up appointments to ensure that your oral device is working as effectively as possible. Another important factor we evaluate is your bite alignment and whether or not the oral appliance is encouraging good bite patterns. One of the most significant reasons behind oral appliance failure is poor fit – these ongoing follow-up appointments give our team the opportunity to closely monitor and identify any potential consequences. From there, we can titrate, or reposition the device to work more cohesively with your smile and preserve your overall health and wellbeing.
Some of the things Dr. Buchanan will look for include: