CPAP Alternatives for Sleep Apnea Treatment | Dr. Shlafer
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Sleep Apnea Treatment in Farmington Hills, MI

What is Sleep Apnea?

Sleep apnea is a condition that constantly interferes with your ability to breathe while sleeping. The most common form of this sleep disorder is called obstructive sleep apnea, or OSA. This occurs when your throat muscles relax and cause your tongue to fall back into the airway.

This creates a blockage, causing you to wake up repeatedly throughout the night𑁋and often without even realizing it. Sleep apnea is a serious condition that can lead to long-term health consequences if left untreated. Unfortunately, many patients don’t realize they suffer from a sleep disorder until they take a sleep test or study.

Explore our guide to learn how Dr. Shlafer can relieve snoring and sleep apnea symptoms with a customized oral appliance.


Loud and frequent snoring is one of the most common indications of sleep apnea. However, not everyone who snores suffers from a sleep disorder. Sleep apnea can lead to a variety of debilitating symptoms, including:

  • Frequently gasping for air at night
  • Waking up with a sore or dry throat
  • Excessive daytime sleepiness
  • Mood changes, like depression or irritability
  • Lack of energy and motivation
  • Morning headaches
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Frequent urination at night
  • Reduced libido
  • Nighttime sweating
  • Recent weight gain

Call our Farmington office right away if you're experiencing any of these symptoms𑁋you may be suffering from sleep apnea. Taking a sleep study is the only way to get a proper diagnosis and receive the quality care you need.


Any person can be affected by sleep apnea regardless of age or gender. However, certain risk factors make you more susceptible to sleep apnea. Contact our office in Farmington Hills if you fall into one or more of the following categories:

  • Family history
  • Excessive alcohol consumption
  • Smoking or tobacco use
  • Nasal congestion
  • Being overweight or obese
  • Large neck circumference
  • A narrowed airway

If any of these common risk factors apply to you, we recommend undergoing a sleep test. It evaluates your quality of sleep and measures specific factors, like snoring, breathing levels, and body movements. It’s typically conducted at an overnight sleep facility by a qualified physician.


If left untreated, sleep apnea can lead to considerable health problems𑁋both mentally and physically. Sleep apnea causes a reduction in your oxygen levels, which impacts your ability to function correctly. This leaves you more susceptible to additional complications, including:

  • High blood pressure
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Anxiety and depression
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Stroke
  • Premature death
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

Seeking professional treatment early on will help relieve your symptoms and prevent further health problems down the line. Contact our Farmington Hills, MI office to schedule your consultation with Dr. Shlafer by calling (248) 781-0040 today.

Sleep Apnea Treatment & CPAP Alternatives

Once you receive a proper diagnosis, Dr. Shlafer will review your test results and help you determine a solution based on your needs and preferences. We’ll always work to understand each patient and their condition to determine the best, most effective sleep apnea treatment.

CPAP Machine

The first, most commonly prescribed solution a doctor will recommend is a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine. It works by pumping pressurized air through a mask that’s worn over your nose while you sleep. This machine forces your airway to remain open and allows you to breathe normally.

Though it can be effective when used properly, many patients complain that their CPAP is too loud, restrictive, awkward-to-use, and uncomfortable. As a result, they end up not using it consistently and negating the positive effects.

Oral Appliance Therapy

At our practice, Dr. Shlafer is happy to offer oral appliance therapy to relieve sleep apnea symptoms and help you get a better night’s rest. It’s a small, non-invasive device that gently shifts your jaw forward, keeping your airway open and preventing your tongue from collapsing and blocking airflow.

Each oral appliance is custom-made to fit easily and comfortably your mouth, while also improve your quality of sleep. They’re comfortable to wear, easy to travel with, and silent.


Oral appliances, also known as mandibular adjustment devices (MAD), offer numerous benefits over CPAP therapy and other sleep apnea treatments. They allow you to sleep in any position you want, while using a CPAP requires you to sleep on your back. Additional advantages include:

  • Comfortable
  • Quiet
  • Less invasive
  • Portable
  • Inconspicuous
  • Affordable
  • Easy-to-use
  • No surgery required

Natural Sleep Apnea Solutions

Incorporating additional CPAP alternatives, like lifestyle changes, into your sleep apnea treatment can significantly reduce your symptoms. Some effective natural remedies include:

  1. Getting regular exercise and following a nutritional, well-balanced diet are effective ways to lose weight and reduce excess tissue that’s blocking the airway.
  2. Using positional therapy, or adjusting your sleeping position, can be used to improve your breathing patterns and alleviate snoring.
  3. Practicing mouth and throat exercises can ease the effects of sleep apnea by strengthening the muscles along the airway.
  4. Limiting alcohol consumption and reducing or avoiding smoking can help reduce the severity of your condition.

Visit Dr. Shlafer for Sleep Apnea Treatment

Whether you’ve recently been diagnosed with sleep apnea or you’ve been struggling with your CPAP machine for years, Dr. Shlafer can help you get the restorative rest you need with a comfortable oral appliance.

Give us a call at (248) 781-0040 to schedule your complimentary consultation or stop by to meet our exceptional team of dentists. We proudly serve patients from Canton, Plymouth, Southfield, Franklin, Beverly Hills, and throughout Michigan.

Don’t wait, come and see how dentistry is done differently at Roman Shlafer, DDS.

Frequently Asked Questions


While the CPAP machine has been trusted for decades in sleep apnea treatment, the equipment can be a hassle. Some known side effects of using a CPAP machine include:

  • Dry mouth
  • Dry nose/nose bleeds
  • Headaches
  • Lung discomfort due to the temperature of the CPAP air
  • Dizziness
  • Infections
  • Mask leaks
  • Discomfort
  • Claustrophobia

Fortunately, there are safe and effective alternatives to using the CPAP machine, so you can address your sleep apnea and sleep comfortably. With a customized oral device, you can sleep soundly without all the side effects of a CPAP machine.


Studies show that around 50% of people will eventually stop using their CPAP machines, mostly because they’re uncomfortable and inconvenient. While it’s not recommended to completely quit receiving treatment for sleep apnea, there are alternative options you can pursue.

With a customized oral appliance, you can conveniently reclaim your nights without the hassle of all the side effects of a CPAP machine. If you’re interested in learning more about an oral appliance, schedule a consultation with Dr. Shlafer by calling (248) 781-0040.


Sleep apnea is classified as mild, moderate, or severe depending on the number of times an hour that your breathing stops or becomes shallow. Five to 15 times per hour is considered mild, 15 to 30 is moderate, and more than 30 to 40 per hour is considered severe.

Although not all cases are considered severe, it’s still important to treat the disorder so you can avoid the long-term effects associated with sleep apnea.


The only way to cure sleep apnea is to have a uvulopalatopharyngoplasty, or UPP surgery, to remove excess tissue from the pharynx and soft palate. However, the surgery is invasive and is only performed as a last resort.

Some lifestyle modifications may help to reduce symptoms, but they typically need to be used in combination with another treatment to be effective.


While most patients with obstructive sleep apnea are overweight, there are some exceptions. Patients with a narrowed airway also suffer from the disorder, regardless of size. As many as 90% of people who have obstructive sleep apnea are unaware that they have it. The disorder is largely associated with overweight men, so people who have it may not even think it’s a possibility.

Some lifestyle modifications may help to reduce symptoms, but they typically need to be used in combination with another treatment to be effective.


If left untreated, sleep apnea can cause several issues such as weight gain, memory problems, high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, and headaches. In addition to health problems, people with chronic fatigue are more likely to cause motor vehicle accidents.

Fortunately, Dr. Shlafer can help. If you’re experiencing sleep apnea symptoms, schedule a consultation with Dr. Shlafer by calling (248) 781-0040. During the consultation, he’ll examine your symptoms and determine if you would benefit from a sleep study.

If you are diagnosed with sleep apnea, Dr. Shlafer can explain your treatment options so you can make an informed decision.


Depending on your coverage, your insurance company may help cover all or a portion of the expenses for an oral appliance. For a better understanding of your coverage, we suggest contacting your provider before your appointment for better understanding of your benefits.

If you have any questions we can answer, be sure to contact our office by calling (248) 781-0040 and one of our knowledgeable team members will assist you.

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"Dr. Shlafer became my dentist 2 years ago when my fiance at the time recommended I use his dentist. From the initial consultation, I knew Dr Shlafer would be my long term dentist. Dr Shalfer and his team were very thorough which showed that they truly cared about my dental health. I highly recommend Dr. Shlafer."

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