Snoring Problems

Understanding TMJ; Temporomandibular Joint

There is a flexible hinge joint known as the temporomandibular joint that connects the lower jaw to the skull. On either side of the jaw is the TMJ, which enables the jaw to move properly, supporting the everyday functions of chewing, talking and everything else. It is very common for patients to have minor and major problems relating to the TMJ. If untreated, these minor discomforts can lead to severe and damaging health issues later.

What is TMD; Temporomandibular Disorder

When something goes wrong with the TMJ, it is known as TMD; temporomandibular disorder. There has been extensive research to link TMD to sleeping and breathing disorders. Quite often, the pain is located in and around the jaw; typically, near the head and neck.

During the inflammatory process, other areas of the body may also be affected by TMD. There can often be pain around the beck, shoulder and back, all of which can cause postural issues. Complementary therapies alongside your ProSmiles treatment plan may include lifestyle changes and self-help physiotherapy exercises.

Common Symptoms of TMD

  • Clicking, popping or grating of the jaw joint
  • Earache, buzzing or blocked sensation in the ear
  • Headaches and migraines
  • The jaw may feel tight and be difficult to move
  • Muscle pain around the jaw, face and neck areas
  • Pain in the front of the ear, cheek, or temple
  • Neckaches or backaches

TMD Treatment Options

Due to the nature of TMD and the complexity it offers, ProSmiles offers a treatment plan that involves physiotherapists, sleep physicians, ENTs and chiropractors to give professional management and care.

The team at ProSmiles are professionally trained in the treatment and recognition of TMD, offering appropriate and effective treatment for those with the disorder. Our use of advanced diagnostic technology means we can expertly diagnose your TMD.

This allows us to find and treat the TMD thoroughly, restoring pain-free functionally to your body. Our team can perform a full set of diagnostic analysis using a 3D scan to map your TMJ and airways. This allows us to create and use a photographic model of your jaw.

Once we have completed the scan, we can use the records, 3D model of your jaw, postural analysis and a sleep study to determine the very best treatment for your specific condition. We can then use a number of treatment options to provide optimal care and outcomes.

One of our preferred treatment options is using an orthotic splint and adjunctive therapy. We customise a fully fabricated split that fits your mouth. This specialised appliance decompresses the TMJ muscles to improve function and remove the pain.

This is just one of our treatment options, and depending on your condition, we’ll find the right one that suits your situation. Another factor to consider is severity, in which results can vary. It is generally considered, however, that this treatment option takes 3–4 months.

Obstructive Sleep Apnoea and Snoring

Do you or your children snore? Have you watched as your partner or child experiences a brief spell of non-breathing or a choking sound as they sleep? Have you woken fatigued with a dry mouth and headache? If you answer, yes, you may have the first signs of sleep apnoea.

Obstructive Sleep Apnoea (OSA) Explained

Snoring is usually one of the first symptoms of Obstructive Sleep Apnoea, indicating that an airway is partially blocked. This may be a result of enlarged tonsils, a deviated nasal septum, sinus polyps or a collapsing soft palate during sleep.

Clinically classified as a sleep disorder, OSA is characterised by obstruction in the airway during the sleep cycle – more commonly the oropharynx or the throat.

This obstruction causes a complete cessation of breathing when lasting 10 seconds of more this cessation is classified as an apnoea event.

At a detriment to your health, these apnoea events can occur hundreds of times per night, every night if left untreated. This is a serious health issue that demands your attention.

OSA is taxing on the body and your cardiovascular health. The inability to breathe properly coupled with the repeated episodes of partial or complete obstruction of the throat forces the heart to pump harder to circulate more oxygen around the body. This lack of proper inspiration of air and the cessation of breathing can lead to systemic health issues including:

  • High blood pressure
  • Diabetes
  • Stroke
  • Heart Failure
  • Fatigue
  • Memory Impairment
  • Obesity

Treating Sleep Apnoea with ProSmiles

Our team of highly skilled dentists will assist you in the management of your OSA with the use of a customised oral appliance called a Mandibular Advancement Splint (MAS).

Highly effective as a treatment in mild to moderate OSA sufferers, a MAS is a comfortable alternative to medical modalities such as CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) breathing masks.

Once a clinical diagnosis is delivered via a sleep study, our team will fabricate and customise a MAS appliance that offers a perfectly comfortable fit.

Innovative MAS therapy is a less obtrusive and more comfortable method of alleviating OSA than the traditional CPAP mask. Many sufferers of OSA, find the CPAP device, claustrophobic, or they may develop sinus issues from the pressure – all leading to the patient not wearing the mask and endangering their health.

The MAS appliance is created to sit over your top and bottom jaw at night, fixing your bottom jaw and tongue forward as you sleep. This prevents your tongue and jaw from falling back and obstructing your airway. This minimally intrusive solution boasts a success rate as high as 70% and will improve the quality of your sleep, reduce snoring and more importantly, enhance your overall long term health.

Snoring Treatments Melbourne with ProSmiles

Experience uninterrupted sleep that supports good health with the team at ProSmiles. For the very latest advancements in the treatment of OSA, book your appointment today by calling (03) 8613 3416 or email us on info@prosmiles.com.au.