One of the main courses of treatment for sleep apnea is an oral appliance, made by a dentist. There are over the counter versions of these oral appliances and while the principle is the same between the two, the ones that are over the counter are much less expensive. Dr. Rich Gillespie, who treats patients with sleep apnea in Vancouver, Washington at Gillespie Dentistry, has found that for those patients who have previously gone down the over the counter route, the results have been less successful because the fit is not as good.
Dr. Gillespie says that the beauty of the oral appliance made by dentists is that it's adjustable so they can be customized and the over the counter products are "hit and miss" as to whether or not they will work. A dentist can monitor the wearing of a custom-made device so that an optimal opening of the airway can be achieved. Dr. Gillespie notes that an oral appliance made by a dentist is a medical device that is very durable. While there is the greater expense, insurance covers these devices. Additionally, there is no follow up medical care with an over the counter device.
Dr. Rich Gillespie is a dentist and leading sleep expert with Sleep Better TV, a featured network of Sequence Media Group. Sleep Better TV provides online, on-demand, sleep breathing disorder video content. For more information on Dr. Gillespie, click here.