OAT Examination Process
The examination process for Oral Appliance Therapy involves visits to both a physician and a dentist. Below is what the typical process looks like:
- The patient goes to a physician concerning Obstructive Sleep Apnea symptoms. Dentists do not to diagnose sleep disorders.
- The physician orders a sleeping test, called a Polysomnogram (PSG).
- The physician views the results of the PSG and makes a medical diagnosis for Sleep Disordered Breathing (SDB) and, if appropriate, refers the patient to a dentist for Oral Appliance Therapy.
- The patient makes an appointment with the dentist for an examination.The patient receives a dental examination for Oral Appliance Therapy.
- After the appliance is made, the dentist inserts the appliance and adjusts it to the optimum position. After adequate adjustment, the dentist refers the patient back to the physician for an assessment.
- Final resolution of the Sleep Disordered Breathing is determined by the referring physician.
- If the medical assessment shows need for more adjustment, the patient is referred back to the dentist.
- In specific cases when the adjustment fails to achieve the desired results, the referring physician may recommend an alternate form of therapy or combination therapy
- An annual dental assessment is recommended for the Sleep Disordered Breathing since it gets worse over time. The dental recall examination evaluates complications, compliance, appliance deterioration and the need for further adjustment.