About 70 million people in the United States have obstructive sleep apnea, and its prevalence is on the rise. Sleep apnea isn’t just dangerous to the patient while they are trying to sleep (for the obvious reason of their airway being obstructed) but it poses several ongoing health concerns when patients are awake.
Sleep apnea patients can struggle with cardiac issues, face greater risks of stroke, gain weight, or may be suffering from memory issues. Poor sleep can lead to a breakdown in your immune system and a host of other problems in your day-to-day life.
Sleep apnea can be mild, moderate, or severe, and it can present with or without noticeable symptoms to the patient, even at its most severe.
While one treatment for sleep apnea is PAP therapy or a CPAP machine, another choice is a mandibular advancement device. This might be a standard or custom made device that fits to the upper and lower part of the patient’s teeth.
That’s where you, the dentist, come in.
As you start to see sleep apnea patients, you will need to create the appliance, and monitor for fit, issues, and effectiveness. You also must keep an eye on how the teeth and temporomandibular joint function over time.
Whether you are a doctor who has been working with sleep apnea patients some time now, or you are just starting to book your first few sleep apnea patients, proper remote dental monitoring of your sleep apnea patients is essential.
How can an app help you treat sleep apnea patients?
- Increase your patient’s compliance.
Here is a scary thought: over 49% of patients put on some type of PAP therapy are non-compliant. That is a HUGE number of people put at risk every single night. When you, their doctor, are connected to them with a HIPAA-compliant medical remote monitoring system, you can help dramatically increase compliance for your patients, stay connected, and focus extra attention on those most at risk-all from the comfort of their home, and without extra office visits.
- Use AI and data collection for the prediction and analysis.
Once you have the data, you can act accordingly. When you have the history and the data of a patient’s performance in front of you on a dashboard, you can easily see and predict which of your patients will be most likely to fail at treatment.
Create a strategy where you focus on those patients. Remember: no matter what type of appliance you endorse, with a remote monitoring app, you can customize a treatment plan for each individual patient.
Doctors can choose specific questions on the patient’s phone app that are set on a frequency where the patient needs to engage and select a response that calculates their Treatment Mph score. This gives you the information you need to make decisions on treatment between visits-and without a costly appointment.
- Scale your practice.
With a remote monitoring app, you can answer questions through the app, without needing an in-person, time-intensive visit that ties up both your front desk staff as well as your clinicians. Save those appointments for emergencies, and new patient onboardings.
You only have so many hours in the day to see patents. When you can monitor and communicate with your sleep apnea patients through an app, you can significantly grow your practice-and therefore your revenue.
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