My Blog

Posts for tag: sleep apnea

By New Hope Cosmetic and Family Dentistry
September 05, 2019
Category: Oral Health
Tags: sleep apnea   snoring  

When you awake in the morning do you still feel exhausted? Are you irritable during the day, unable to think or focus clearly? Is your loud snoring bothering your bed partner?

If you answered affirmatively to any of these questions, you may have sleep apnea. This happens when an obstruction (usually the tongue) blocks the airway during sleep, preventing you from breathing. Your brain notices the drop in oxygen and wakes you to re-open the airway. The arousal lasts only a few seconds, and you may not even notice. But because it can happen many times a night, these waking episodes can rob you of the deep sleep your body needs.

Sleep apnea is more serious than simply waking up grumpy. Over time, it could contribute to dangerous health conditions like high blood pressure or heart disease. If you’re noticing any of these signs, it’s important then that you undergo a complete examination by a physician or dentist trained in sleep-related issues.

Fortunately, there are ways to reduce sleep apnea. One of the most common is continuous airway pressure (CPAP): This method uses a small pump that pushes pressurized air through a face mask worn while the patient sleeps. The forced air keeps the airway open and reduces apnea episodes.

While it’s an effective method, it can be uncomfortable and cumbersome to use—some people can’t tolerate wearing the mask while they sleep. But if your sleep apnea symptoms are mild to moderate, your dentist may be able to provide an alternative therapy with a specially designed oral appliance.

Similar to a mouthguard or retainer, a sleep apnea appliance worn during sleep holds the lower jaw forward, which helps move the tongue away from the airway. It’s much less cumbersome (and noisy) than a CPAP machine. And your dentist can custom design and fabricate your appliance for a comfortable fit.

Not all cases of sleep apnea can benefit from such an appliance, or even from CPAP therapy. Extreme cases could require surgery to remove tissues blocking the airway. But most sleep apnea patients don’t require this invasive intervention. Getting checked by a qualified medical professional could open the door to a more convenient and effective way to a better night’s sleep.

If you would like more information on dental solutions for sleep apnea, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation.

February 26, 2019
Category: Oral Health

Couple Sleeping WellSuffering from sleep apnea? Have other treatments failed? If you have sleep apnea, there is a breakthrough treatment that may help. Research shows that oral appliance therapy is an effective treatment option for snoring and obstructive sleep apnea. Led by Dr. Dawn Rickert, New Hope Cosmetic & Family Dentistry (located in New Hope, PA) offers many effective treatments for sleep apnea. Read on to learn about the different types of sleep apnea appliances that are available.

SomnoDent- Worn only during sleep, a sleep apnea appliance fits like a sports mouth guard or an orthodontic retainer. The SomnoDent sleep apnea appliance is the gold standard in the treatment of sleep apnea. The SomnoDent device is crafted from a high-quality acrylic material. The device treats sleep apnea by holding the jaw in a forward position, which keeps the airways open. The SomnoDent oral device allows you to sleep comfortably and breathe easier.

Klearway- Klearway is a sleep apnea appliance used for the treatment sleep apnea and snoring. Klearway is crafted from a thermoacrylic material. Klearway becomes pliable for easy insertion and confirms securely to the teeth. The appliance holds the lower in a forward position and the jaws closed together during sleep. The oral appliance fits securely in your mouth for a perfect fit while significantly reducing tooth and soft tissue discomfort.

Herbst Advance- The SomnoDent Herbst Advance sleep apnea appliance is an effective treatment for sleep apnea. The SomnoDent Herbst Advance oral appliance is available in two models (Classic and Flex). Developed with proprietary SMH BFlex, the oral device features a hinge mechanism that increases comfort for the patient. The SomnoDent Herbst Advance is very popular because it's well made, durable and comfortable to wear.

The TAP Device- The TAP 3 and TAP 3 Elite (Thornton Adjustable Positioner) effectively treat snoring and sleep apnea. The TAP 3 and TAP 3 Elite are custom-made sleep apnea appliances that fit firmly over the teeth. The oral devices hold the jaw forward and allow the patient's lips to close. The TAP 3 and TAP 3 Elite improve breathing and eliminate snoring in over 95 percent of patients. These oral appliances also effectively treat sleep apnea and reduce the impact of associated health risks without the need for surgery.

SomnoDent SUAD- The SomnoDent SUAD is a premium sleep apnea appliance that safely and effectively treats sleep apnea. The oral appliance is produced from a laboratory-grade impression of your own teeth. It is designed to withstand the forces of teeth grinding. The SomnoDent SUAD is a comfortable, effective, and durable alternative to CPAP therapy or surgery.

Don't take the risk. Left untreated, sleep apnea can have serious and life-threatening consequences. Call New Hope Cosmetic & Family Dentistry at (215) 862-2525 today to schedule a dental consultation in New Hope, PA. We want you to live your best possible life!

April 26, 2018
Category: Dental Procedures

Find out how this simple oral device could help manage your sleep apnea symptoms.sleep apnea

Whether you’ve just been diagnosed with sleep apnea, a common sleep disorder, or you’ve had it for a while now there are many reasons to take the time to weigh your treatment options. While CPAP therapy tends to be the first course of action when it comes to treating sleep apnea it isn’t the only treatment. In fact, our New Hope, PA, dentist, Dr. Dawn Rickert, could even help you achieve better quality sleep.

What is sleep apnea?

When someone has sleep apnea this means that the airways become blocked throughout the course of the night, causing shallow breathing or pauses in breathing. As a result, the body and brain aren’t getting the sufficient amount of oxygen they need to function at their most optimal level.

Why should sleep apnea be treated?

Unfortunately, many people don’t realize that they have sleep apnea; however, if you find yourself having trouble getting out of bed every morning because you feel exhausted (even after a full night’s rest), then you might want to get evaluated by a medical professional.

Sure, we know that most people wake up feeling tired because they didn’t get quality sleep or enough sleep, but if you are getting at least 8 hours of sleep a night but still waking up extremely tired and feeling this way throughout the day then you need to see a sleep specialist as soon as possible.

Sleep apnea doesn’t just cause you to feel tired and drained all day (which is enough of a reason to seek treatment), it can also affect your mood, concentration, and work performance. Furthermore, untreated sleep apnea can also increase your chances for:

  • Stroke
  • Heart attack
  • Heart disease
  • High blood pressure
  • Type II diabetes
  • Asthma

What is oral appliance therapy?

Our New Hope family dentist can treat mild or even moderate cases of obstructive sleep apnea with this simple dental device. This oral appliance looks similar to a mouthguard; however, it’s specially designed to be able to keep airways open while you are sleep. It does that by repositioning the jaws in a forward position, which can prevent the tissues in the back of the throat from collapsing.

There are different kinds of oral appliances on the market, and we can help you choose the one that’s right for you based on your specific health concerns, needs, lifestyle, budget, etc.

New Hope Cosmetic & Family Dentistry is dedicated to providing the very best in dentistry to the New Hope, PA, area. From sleep apnea to dental veneers we handle it all so that you get the smile and care you want.


Jillian Michaels, personal trainer and star of television's The Biggest Loser isn't afraid of a tough situation — like a heart-pumping exercise routine that mixes kickboxing with a general cardio workout. But inside, she told an interviewer from Dear Doctor magazine, she's really a softie, with “a drive to be one of the good guys.” In her hit TV shows, she tries to help overweight people get back to a healthy body mass. And in doing so, she comes face-to-face with the difficult issue of sleep apnea.

“When I encounter sleep apnea it is obviously weight related. It's incredibly common and affects millions of people,” she says. Would it surprise you to know that it's a problem dentists encounter as well?

Sleep apnea is a type of sleep-related breathing disorder (SRBD) that's associated with being overweight, among other things. Chronic loud snoring is one symptom of this condition. A person with sleep apnea may wake 50 or more times per hour and have no memory of it. These awakenings last just long enough to allow an individual to breathe — but don't allow a deep and restful sleep. They may also lead to other serious problems, and even complications such as brain damage from lack of oxygen.

What's the dental connection? Sleep apnea can sometimes be effectively treated with an oral appliance that's available here at the dental office. The appliance, worn at night, repositions the jaw to reduce the possibility of the tongue obstructing the throat and closing the airway. If you are suffering from sleep apnea, an oral appliance may be recommended — it's a conservative treatment that's backed by substantial scientific evidence.

As Michaels says, “I tell people that [sleep apnea] is not a life sentence... It will get better with hard work and a clean diet.” So listen to the trainer! If you would like more information about sleep-related breathing disorders, please contact us for a consultation. You can learn more in the Dear Doctor magazine article “Sleep Disorders and Dentistry.”