Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

Where are your dental sleep practices located?

Dental Sleep Professionals has practices both in New South Wales and Queensland.  Our dental practices are located throughout Sydney, and in Gosford and Charlestown in NSW, and throughout Brisbane and on the Gold Coast in QLD.

What is Obstructive Sleep Apnoea?

Obstructive Sleep Apnoea (also referred to as sleep apnoea on this website) is caused by soft tissue in the throat or the tongue obstructing the airway during sleep.  This is because when individuals with sleep apnoea are sleeping, the muscles in their throat become overly relaxed, resulting in severe restriction or collapse of the airway repeatedly throughout their sleep.  This leads to reductions in blood oxygen saturation, which has many adverse health effects.

What are the signs and symptoms of Obstructive Sleep Apnoea?

Sleep apnoea is often undetected by the sufferer, since apnoeas only occur while they are asleep.  However, a bed partner will often notice cessation in breathing, gasping and snoring, all of which are a good indication that a person has sleep disordered breathing.  Other signs and symptoms of obstructive sleep apnoea include excessive daytime sleepiness, fatigue or lethargy, lack of energy and endurance, falling asleep during the day, disturbed or restless sleep, poor memory and concentration, morning headaches, dry mouth or sore throat upon waking, mood or behaviour changes, frequent urination during the night, or rapid weight gain or difficulty losing weight.

The best way to determine if you have obstructive sleep apnoea is to conduct a sleep study, which you can do with us or through a sleep physician.

Is Obstructive Sleep Apnoea something to be concerned about?

Yes. The constant cycle of airway obstruction leads to a deterioration of your body which can affect your heart and brain. The latest evidence links snoring and sleep apnoea with high blood pressure (hypertension), cardiovascular disease, an increased risk of stroke and sudden death. Aside from the serious health conditions, sleep apnoea can also cause memory problems, weight gain, impotency, headaches, and accidents in the workplace or home.

What causes someone to snore?

Snoring is a result of a partial blocking of the upper airway. When you fall asleep your muscles relax, including those that control your tongue and throat. The soft tissue (or flesh) at the back of your throat can sag, narrowing the airway. Incoming air then makes the following areas vibrate: the tissue at the rear roof of the mouth (soft palate), the flap of skin hanging from the palate (uvula), and the throat. This vibration creates the sound we know as snoring.

Snoring might be noisy, but isn’t it harmless? 

No, there is no such thing as harmless snoring. If left untreated snoring will worsen over time and potentially lead to life-threatening conditions.

Is your dentist a specialised dental sleep practitioner?

Yes. Dr Joachim Ngiam is a multi-award-winning dental sleep practitioner who lectures locally and internationally about the treatment of snoring and Obstructive Sleep Apnoea.

Do I need a referral to see Dr Joachim Ngiam?

No. While a lot of our patients are referred to us by medical specialists and general practitioners, you don’t need a referral. Simply make an appointment – we’ll be happy to see you!

If I haven’t been referred by a sleep specialist, do I require a sleep study?

In some cases, yes. We can either provide the sleep study in-house or we’ll refer you to a specialist for an in-laboratory sleep study. This way we can determine whether or not you have sleep apnoea, as well as the intensity of your snoring.  Sleep studies also let us know that the device is working for you!

What treatment do you offer for snoring and sleep apnoea?

Our snoring and sleep apnoea treatment is called Oral Appliance Therapy (OAT), of which the most common device is a Mandibular Advancement Splint. It’s like a specially-fitted sport’s mouthguard made up of two dental plates that are custom-made for you.

Is a Mandibular Advancement Splint safe?

Absolutely. It has TGA and FDA approval.

How much does the Mandibular Advancement Splint (MAS) cost?

Mandibular Advancement Splints are competitively priced, but the price varies from person to person.  This is because different devices suit people and their health problems: we try to match you with the device that is going to be most successful at alleviating your symptoms while still meeting your budget.

Will my private health fund cover some of the cost of a Mandibular Advancement splint?

Some health funds will contribute a particular amount, however it’s best to check with your individual health fund.

Can I claim it on Medicare?

No. However, war veterans can have the whole device paid for if approved by the Department of Veterans Affairs.

Can you guarantee that you’ll cure my snoring problems and sleep apnoea?

We achieve excellent results for our valued patients. However, as with all forms of treatment, there is always a chance that it will not work for everyone.

Can I develop sleep apnoea at any age?

Yes, sleep apnoea can occur at any age and is more common with age.

How many people are affected by sleep apnoea?

Several millions. You’re definitely not alone!

Apparently I clench and grind my teeth. Can the Mandibular Advancement Splint help with this?

Yes. As an additional benefit the Mandibular Advancement Splint stops you from clenching and grinding your teeth.

Clenching and grinding does not only cause damage to your teeth, it can damage any dental work you’ve had done. So as you can see, the Mandibular Advancement Splint provides additional protection, saving you hundreds of dollars in possible dental work and repair.

 

With over two decades of experience, Dr Joachim Ngiam is an experienced dental
sleep technician who specialises in snoring solutions and sleep apnoea treatment in these Sydney locations:
Hornsby, Gosford, Chatswood, Parramatta, Penrith and Charlestown. enjoyable as possible.

 

Got a question, feel free to get in touch for an obligation-free, friendly chat.