A huge question we get all the time in our office is: how are our appliances different from the ones they can buy online or over the counter (OTC) at a drug store?
This is a great question. The main difference is going to be the way they fit. Ones that online retailers provide are a one size fits most concept. Usually, you get an unfitted product that has a thermal lining in it, you boil it to make it pliable, and then you bite down to create some semblance of your particular anatomy. While this works for some, many find that they do not stay in all night, or that it is uncomfortable in certain areas.
Another difference is all of our devices (both for snoring and sleep apnea) have adjustable settings. Dr. Kaplan is able to accurately control how far, and how fast your jaw is advanced. This is beneficial for two reasons.
1. If your snoring or apneas do not completely stop with one setting, you can get further advancement to ensure maximum efficiency.
2. We can control the advancement down to the quarter millimeter on some devices, which means that it can move very slowly if need be to avoid issues with your jaw or bite.
Some of the OTC devices are adjustable too. However, the ones we have found that are, are adjustable are in large increments. Large jumps in advancement or using a one size fits all setting could lead to issues with your jaw or bite over time. Under the care of a trained, knowledgeable professional is the best way to treat these problems.
The main point we would like to emphasize is BE SMART. Your health is not something we ever want to jeopardize. Do research, make a plan, and ask questions. We are always happy to help, even if you don't get one of our devices we will still do whatever we can to help you get the treatment you need.