Review of oral appliances
State of the art oral appliances are customised and adjustable
Custom made adjustable oral appliances, commonly known as sleep apnoea/snoring mouth guards, are now regarded by sleep physicians, and experts in the field, as the best available treatment for overcoming snoring and, along with the CPAP machine, one of the two main treatments for sleep apnoea. The main difference to CPAP is that oral appliances are far more comfortable, easy to use and travel with. Oral appliances are customised to allow the dentist, and importantly the patient, to slowly bring the lower jaw forward to the ideal most comfortable position that opens the airway and overcomes snoring, tiredness and sleep apnoea.
A revolution in appliances
Custom-made 3D printed nylon appliances
Using the latest generation technology, 3D printed nylon can be made to a thickness of 1mm resulting in unprecedented comfort and accuracy of fit. Nylon appliances are also virtually indestructible in the mouth. 3D printed nylon is becoming the new standard of care in oral appliances and are now being used exclusively at SleepWise Clinic.
These are examples of state of the art 3D printed appliances.
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Conventional acrylic appliances
Acrylic oral appliances have been used for many years and have been a very effective form of treatment. The main problem is that as the acrylic material is brittle and subject to fractures, the appliances needs to be relatively thick, particularly when compared to nylon.
Over the counter (boil and bite devices)
The other category is the ‘over the counter’ devices, also known as boil and bite devices. They generally have no, or only a limited way of adjusting the appliance to find the optimal position of the lower jaw.
The main problem with the boil and bite devices is that being one size fits all they need to be large in order to fit all sizes of people’s jaws. This makes them far bulkier than they need to be. Another problem is that because of the softness of the material they tend to fall o the teeth and don’t tend to stay in place during sleep.
Comparing oral appliances for snoring and sleep apnoea
The following table compares custom made 3D printed nylon appliances, custom made acrylic appliances and over the counter ‘boil and bite’ devices.
|Features||Boil and Bite Device||Custom Made Acrylic Appliance||Custom Made Nylon Appliance *|
|Average thickness||7 mm||4 mm||1.5 mm|
|Accuracy of fit|
|Usual warranty for damage||3 months||12 months||3 years|
|Clinical delivery||No||Dentist / Sleep Physician||Dentist / Sleep Physician|
|Product lifespan||Replace often||3 plus years||6 plus years|
|Health insurance benefits||No||Yes||Yes|
* Custom Made 3D Printed Nylon Appliance from SleepWise Clinic
The Latest 3D Scanning Technology
SleepWise Clinic uses the latest intraoral scanning, where an image of the patient’s teeth is created using 3D scanning technology. The 3D technology is unmatched in its accuracy and patients undergo an easy and comfortable procedure, where the appliance is then produced and ready to be fitted 2-3 weeks following the initial consultation. Learn more about the professional fitting process.
Choosing the best oral appliance for you
At SleepWise Clinic we will assess which design of oral appliance is best for your specific needs. No two appliances are made the same, with each design offering a unique set of benefits and functionalities.