Sleep Apnea FAQs –Richardson, TX

Learning More About Your Sleep Disorder

Some patients are uncertain about pursuing sleep apnea therapy, often not knowing what to expect. The impact sleep apnea has on your life will only grow the longer the disorder is left unchecked, so if there are any concerns on your mind, Dr. Stampe and the rest of our team want to put them to rest so that you can commit to the treatment you need without reservation. We’ve addressed a number of common sleep apnea questions below; we hope that you find our answers helpful!

Can My Dentist Diagnose Sleep Apnea? 

Sleep dentists can only screen for oral cancer symptoms and let you know whether you may need a sleep test. In order to have sleep apnea diagnosed, you will need to see a sleep doctor. A proper diagnosis is necessary for determining the best type of treatment for your specific disorder. Once you have been diagnosed with sleep apnea, you can speak to your sleep dentist about getting an oral appliance.

How Soon After Starting Sleep Apnea Treatment Will I Notice Improvement? 

When you first get an oral appliance, it might take you a night or two to get used to it. Once you do, you should be mindful of your symptoms. If it seems like they’re less severe than they used to be, or if they’ve stopped altogether, that’s generally a good sign that the treatment is working.

That said, it’s often difficult to tell how much of an impact oral appliance therapy is having through observation alone. The best way to confirm whether it’s having the desired effect is to undergo additional sleep testing.

Is Sleep Apnea Diagnosis and Treatment Covered by Insurance?  

In many cases, the answer is yes, but different insurance providers have their own policies, so the kind of coverage that’s available depends on what plan you have. You should double-check with your insurance company to see what benefits they offer for treatments related to sleep apnea.

Remember that even if you’re receiving a sleep apnea appliance from a dentist, it will most likely fall under your medical insurance rather than your dental insurance. This is because sleep apnea is classified as a medical issue, not a dental one. If there’s any confusion about your coverage, please speak to our team.

How Should I Clean My Sleep Apnea Oral Appliance? 

You’ll be wearing your oral appliance every night, so it needs to be cleaned regularly in order to prevent the buildup of bacteria that can cause cavities and gum disease. One of the first things you should do every morning is carefully brush your oral appliance before rinsing it off thoroughly. It may also be a good idea to occasionally soak it in denture cleanser. Once you’re done cleaning it, make sure you store it properly; keep it in its storage case instead of simply leaving it on your bathroom counter. Let us know if you would like additional tips for taking proper care of your appliance.