Treatments for Obstructive Sleep Apnoea

Sleep apnoea is a medical condition which can lead to irregular breathing during sleep. The symptoms are increased daytime sleepiness, impaired vigilance, cognitive performance, depression, disturbed sleep and hypertension. This is why people who manifest these symptoms need to be treated immediately because they are at risk of more dangerous illnesses.

Studies suggest that treatment can improve sleepiness, cognition, mood, quality of life, and blood pressure in patients with an Epworth score of >11, troublesome sleepiness while driving or working, and >15 apnoeas + hypopneas per hour of sleep.

So how is sleep apnoea treated? The standard for treatment is Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP). CPAP therapy works by blowing the airway open during sleep. This method improves breathing during sleep, sleep quality, sleepiness, blood pressure, vigilance, cognition, and driving ability, as well as mood and quality of life in patients with sleep apnoea. However, the need for CPAP should be explained to patients for proper compliance.

Another treatment method is through the use of the Mandibular Repositioning Splint (MRS). Also called oral devices, they hold the lower jaw and the tongue forward, thereby widening the pharyngeal airway. They can improve breathing, daytime somnolence, and blood pressure.

If these treatments cannot be of help to the patient, the next treatment of choice is surgery. Surgery may be in the form of bariatric surgery, tonsillectomy, tracheostomy and jaw advancement surgery—particularly maxillo-mandibular osteotomy.

No drugs are effective in the prevention and treatment of sleep apnoea. There are many products in the market; however, most of them are not approved by the FDA.

If you have symptoms of sleep apnoea, visit your doctor so that proper diagnosis can be made.


Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine 17th edition. Braunwald E, Fauci AS, Kasper DL, Hauser SL, Longno DL and Jameson JL. (eds). 2008 New York: McGraw-Hill. ISBN 978-0-07-159991-7

Somnowell Inventor - Visiting Professor Simon Ash FDS MSc MOrth BDS

Prof. Ash is the inventor of the highly successful SOMNOWELL Chrome device for snoring and sleep apnoea.

The Somnowell Chrome is made to exacting standards in the Somnowell laboratory under the supervision of Visiting Professor Simon Ash. Prof. Ash and his master technicians create each Somnowell Chrome device using their wealth of experience and expertise.

Prof. Ash works at the forefront of his profession. He is a Consultant and Specialist Orthodontist with over 30 years clinical experience, with a special interest in sleep related breathing disorders, TMJD, and bruxism. He currently works in Harley Street London and two private hospitals in London as part of a multi-disciplinary team managing snoring and sleep apnoea, and is Visiting Professor of Orthodontics at the BPP University.