We are excited to have a great group of people join us to learn more about dental sleep medicine and TMJ disorders March 26-27! This is a two-day program that will cover both dental sleep medicine and orofacial pain, focusing on TMD and briefly touching on other orofacial pain seen in a general dental practice. Here is what you can expect each day.

Day 1

On the first day, we will focus on dental sleep medicine and what we know. There are more than 18 million Americans who suffer from sleep apnea, which is when a person’s airway is blocked while they are sleeping. This often occurs in individuals with obesity because additional tissue thickens the wall of the windpipe, making it more difficult to keep open. 

While the most common treatment for sleep apnea is the use of a CPAP machine, many patients are noncompliant and do not want to undergo surgery. In these cases, their best option may be oral appliance therapy, which we as dentists can provide. Wearing an oral appliance helps to open the airway by pushing the lower jaw forward. This option is much more comfortable than a CPAP machine.

Dentists will leave day one with a better understanding of the basics of sleep, sleep medicine and sleep disorders. You will also learn about the role of the dentist in sleep medicine, how to screen for sleep disorders, the use of oral appliances and jaw/bite registration for creation of an oral appliance. 

Day 2

On the second day, we will focus on orofacial pain, which covers a wide spectrum of symptoms and can be exhibited in many areas of the head and neck with most complications associated with the temporomandibular joint disorder, or TMD. A key part of routine dental exams for all patients and the gold standard for the diagnosis of TMD is based on the patient’s history, clinical examination and imaging where necessary. 

For day two, you will learn how to perform a comprehensive examination, how to take a pain history, splint therapy for TMJ disorders and what you should be aware of for orofacial pain. 

We hope to see you there!