Information on treatment options for obstructive sleep apnoea.
What options are there to treat obstructive sleep apnoea?
For milder cases of obstructive sleep apnoea, your doctor may recommend lifestyle changes such as losing weight or quitting smoking. If these measures don't improve your signs and symptoms, or if your obstructive sleep apnoea is moderate to severe there are a number of treatment options available. These treatment options are:
- continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP)
- oral appliances
What is continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP)?
If you have obstructive sleep apnoea, you might benefit from a machine that delivers mild air pressure through a mask to keep your airway open while you sleep. CPAP is one of the most common and reliable methods for treating obstructive sleep apnoea. A CPAP machine comprises a mask (covering your nose and mouth, your nose only, or even prongs that fit into your nose), a tube that connects the mask to the CPAP machine, and a machine that blows air into the tube.
Although some people may find CPAP cumbersome or uncomfortable, most people learn to adjust the mask to obtain a comfortable and secure fit.
What oral appliances can be used to treat sleep apnoea?
Oral appliances (devices) are one option that can be used to treat mild or moderate obstructive sleep apnoea. They are also called Mandibular Advancement Devices (MAD) or Mandibular Advancement Splints (MAS). These devices push your lower jaw forwards which will open up your airways and there will be less of a risk of obstruction. These oral appliances are similar to a mouth guard.
What about surgery?
Surgery in adults with obstructive sleep apnoea is often only used as a last resort. Surgery works by opening up the upper airway. Adults will usually have surgery on either the nose, the upper airway or sometimes both. Exactly what is done depends on your anatomy. Not all treatment options may be available in your jurisdiction. Not all patients are candidates for the treatment options described hereunder. Only a medical professional can diagnose sleep apnoea and determine the treatment appropriate for your specific condition.
The content on the website is for informational purposes only and should not be taken as medical advice. Please always consult with a registered healthcare professional.
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