UPDATE: Beginning March 1, 2019 services for dental sleep medicine  has moved across the hall into Suite 302.   The new number is 724-230-8220 and fax number 724-230-8230


Dental Sleep Medicine

Progressive Dental Solutions for Sleep and TMJ is an accredited facility thru the American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine.  Facility accreditation demonstrates professionalism, proficiency and proper protocol in the standard  of care provided to our patients with sleep-related breathing disorders.



Snoring and Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) are the result of a narrowed or obstructed airway when an individual tries to breathe while sleeping. Snoring occurs when the increased speed of inhaled air passing thru a more narrowed airway vibrates the loose tissue in the back of the airway  making a "snore" sound.  Snoring can just be loud and disruptive to a bed partner or it can be a symptom of a more serious sleep disorder called obstructive sleep apnea  where the individual stops breathing  for 10 seconds or more from a minimum of five to over one hundred times each hour. With each breathing stoppage the individual is interrupted from deep, refreshing sleep and the result is significant daytime sleepiness and often a decrease in mental alertness and focus.  Numerous cardiovascular issues from the effect of decreased oxygen levels in the blood in obstructive sleep apnea  include high blood pressure, increased or irregular heart rate, and Type 2 diabetes.  The increased risks of heart attack and stroke with obstructed sleep apnea is well documented. Recent research now relates increasing levels of obstructive sleep apnea with significantly higher risks of cancer.

Obsructive Sleep Apnea (OSA)

Snoring OSA is a life-threatening disease becoming more and more prevalent in our society. Research has shown that only one in ten of individuals with the disease have actually been diagnosed and that treating OSA can save 7-10 years of one's life expectancy. Anyone diagnosed with OSA must find the treatment modality that they are comfortable and can be compliant with and eliminates their disease. Any individual who snores and chronically feels unrefreshed on awakening and sleepy in the daytime should be concerned about the possibility of having OSA. Completing the Patient Screener identifies your risk and suspected severity level of a sleep-related breathing disorder and is the first step in knowing if you should contact our office or other healthcare professional involved in sleep medicine for a consultation.

Dr.Hnat routinely screens all patients for signs and symptoms of sleep apnea. If apnea is suspected the patient is then referred to a local sleep lab to confirm the suspected diagnosis of OSA. Portable home sleep testing is also an approved option for certain individuals.

Any patient diagnosed with obstuctive sleep apnea or any referred patient with confirmed apnea will be thoroughly re-evaluated to determine if an oral appliance would effectively manage their apnea . These patients can then be fitted for an appropriate custom-fabricated, FDA-approved dental sleep appliance  . Dental sleep appliances are recommended by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine  as first line treatment options for mild and moderate levels of sleep apnea and as an alternative to CPAP therapy  for severe levels of sleep apnea for individuals who fail or cannot tolerate that treatment approach . Dental mouthpieces for apnea either reposition the lower jaw and tongue forward or retain the tongue to effectively keep the airway open so air can be adequately inhaled while sleeping.

Dentists treating patients with oral appliances for sleep-related breathing problems are to abide by the recommended standards of care and guidelines for proper treatment outlined by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine and the American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine. Dr Hnat and his staff strictly follow this protocol with every patient. Once a patient has been custom-fitted with the appropriate oral appliance adjustments are gradually made to the appliance to eliminate snoring, improve sleep quality and daytime energy  and increase nighttime oxygen levels. Patients may be asked to use a simple home monitor while sleeping with their appliance to aid in making the proper adjustments that are needed to help establish the efficacy of the device in managing the patient's apnea and normalizing oxygen levels. After the final adjustment the patient will return to the sleep lab for a final study to confirm that the appliance has corrected their apnea and achieved optimal levels of  restorative sleep. The patient will then be seen for periodic management (typically yearly) to ensure that their appliance is effectively managing their apnea. Dr. Hnat's training and experience with the most progressive oral appliances for sleep apnea enable him to select not only the most effective and comfortable appliance to manage the patient's apnea, but also that which achieves the most compliance for the patient. Managing sleep apnea and hypoxemia - low oxygen levels- during sleep is typically a multidisciplinary effort.  Dr Hnat works collaboratively with medical specialists and sleep lab technicians  in the treatment of patients to find the appliance position that is both comfortable and therapeutic for them. For more information visit AADSM.org/patientresources

For more information on Snoring, Sleep Apnea and CPAP Alternatives  from Progressive Dental Solutions,  call us at (724) 942-5630 today!

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