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Dental Sleep Medicine


As an esteemed Diplomate of the American Board of Dental Sleep Medicine, Dr. Eng is able to treat snoring and obstructive sleep apnea through the use of a Mandibular Advancement Device, or MAD. This specially-designed and custom-fitted dental device is worn while sleeping, and gently helps hold the lower jaw in a forward position. This keeps the throat airway open and allows restful breathing without annoying snoring or the dangerous pauses and gasps of sleep apnea. 


Snoring and Sleep Apnea

Snoring is a common problem that affects as many as 80 million people in North America. It not only affects a person's quality of sleep, but can also be quite annoying to a bedmate and others within hearing distance. Snoring usual occurs when muscles and soft tissues in the throat and mouth relax and contract, which reduces the size of the airway. As it becomes more difficult for each breath to move through the shrunken airway, breathing effort increases, and the moving air causes vibrations as it moves over the soft tissues in the mouth and throat.

Excess body weight, alcohol consumption and certain sleep aids and sedatives may cause snoring, but it could also be indicative of a serious health condition known as obstructive sleep apnea or OSA. If left untreated, OSA can cause or worsen a range of health conditions that includes high blood pressure, heart disease, and stroke, while also increasing the risk of developing Type II diabetes and many cancers. More immediate effects can include weight gain, lethargy, morning headaches and a lack of focus that can result in accidents at work or while driving.

If you or someone you know snores loudly and irregularly, and sometimes stops breathing or seems to gasp for air while asleep, this may be indicative of OSA.

OSA results in shallow breathing and periodic stoppage of breath during sleep. These stoppages can occur as often as 20-30 times per hour, and last up to a minute or more. When breathing stops, oxygen levels in the body drop as carbon dioxide builds up. This sends a signal to the brain, which momentarily wakes up to restart proper breathing. Since the time spent awake is so brief, most people with sleep apnea don't remember it, and may feel like they are getting a good night's sleep, when in fact, they are not. The constant wake-sleep, wake-sleep cycle prevents those with sleep apnea from achieving deep sleep, resulting in a constant drowsy feeling during the day.

Diagnosis and treatment of OSA begins with a visit to a sleep medicine specialist. Dr. Eng can provide a referral to a qualified sleep medicine physician, who may request an overnight sleep study to determine the nature and severity of the apnea condition. Once a diagnosis is obtained, treatment options can be evaluated and discussed.

Traditional therapies for sleep apnea centered around CPAP machines or, in more severe cases, corrective surgery. CPAP devices use fans and and tubes to delivered air to the sleeper by way of a face mask. When fitted and calibrated properly, CPAP can provide effective relief for a range of apnea conditions. Unfortunately, a significant number of patients find themselves unable to tolerate the hardware and facial contact associated with CPAP therapy.

Over the past decade, the field of dental sleep medicine has advanced a number of alternatives to CPAP. Most common are mouthguard-like oral appliances that are worn while sleeping. As an esteemed Diplomate of the American Board of Dental Sleep Medicine, Dr. Eng is able to treat snoring and obstructive sleep apnea through the use of an oral appliance known as a Mandibular Advancement Device, or MAD. This specially-designed and custom-fitted dental device is worn while sleeping, and gently helps hold the lower jaw in a forward position. This keeps the throat airway open and allows restful breathing without annoying snoring or the dangerous pauses and gasps of sleep apnea.

Because MADs are designed for comfort, most users find they are hardly noticed while falling asleep or during sleep, and the device will allow for breathing with the mouth open. Because MADs do not require the restrictive face masks, air tubing and bedside ventilators of a CPAP system, many users find them to be a more attractive and acceptable form of OSA therapy. In addition, because oral appliances such as MADs are compact and do not require electricity, they are more convenient for travel.

For snoring and obstructive sleep apnea apnea patients, Dr. Eng often prescribes the Moses appliance.  This device represents an improvement over simpler MAD designs of the past, as it incorporates tongue management along with jaw advancement. It is designed to activate reflexes that naturally advance the tongue and to decrease the activity of muscles that cause jaw clenching and the grinding of teeth. It's two-part part design is comfortable, and it allows the wearer to close their lips, talk and even drink. Oral appliances such as the Moses system can eliminate snoring for patients with sinus congestion or allergies, and they are highly effective in treating most mild to moderate OSA conditions.


If you need to schedule an appointment with us, please call (718)-898-0300


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Jackson Heights Family Dental
35-60 74th Street Suite 103
Jackson Heights, NY 11372
Tel: 718-898-0300
Fax: 718-478-1123


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