Without fail, when most people hear that phrase the first thing that comes to mind is A CPAP Machine.
A CPAP - continuous positive airway pressure - treats sleep apnea by delivering air through a hose connected to a mask or nosepiece. This device is designed to keep the airways open and prevent you from stopping breathing during the night.
Oral Appliance: The Solution You Don't Know About
Now, there is a lesser-known device that can help patients treat their sleep apnea too. And that device couldn't be any less complicated...it's an oral appliance.
You may want to consider an oral appliance if you have mild to moderate obstructive sleep apnea. Oral appliance therapy continues to gain traction as a viable solution to ditch your CPAP mask and treat OSA more comfortably. This device fits much like a mouthguard or retainer and keeps your jaw positioned forward, preventing the tongue from collapsing into your throat and blocking the airflow.
Cost of a CPAP vs. an Oral Appliance
Most people shy away from oral appliance therapy because the upfront costs tend to be much higher than that of a CPAP. However, when you consider everything, maybe CPAP is the more expensive treatment option. You see, CPAP machines are much more complex than oral devices; they have many more pieces and require more supplies. And this means more maintenance … and more chances of things going wrong or needing to be replaced.
When you add up all the bells and whistles - the tubing, filters, straps, water chamber, heating tubes, humidifiers, cushions, distilled water - the costs begin to add up. And quickly, because all these things also exist on a replacement schedule to function properly. Much like your home office printer, the initial cost seems reasonable, but when you have to keep it working with outrageously priced ink cartridges, it becomes a much more significant investment.
After only 3 months, with all of this regular maintenance, these two devices can run around the same cost. By the end of five years, the CPAP costs exceed those of oral appliance therapy by two to three times. This is why it's so important for you to weigh your options before deciding which sleep apnea treatment might be best for you.
Here are some other things to consider, in addition to cost, when deciding between CPAP and oral appliance therapies:
If you're suffering with sleep apnea, ADVENT can help you explore all of your options. We can also help you reach your sleeping and breathing goals with one of our revolutionary in-office procedures. Schedule your appointment today for a comprehensive Breathing Triangle evaluation to finally find a solution that fits best to you.