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​​Obstructive Sleep Apnea Guidelines​

Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is a medical syndrome that is characterized by recurrent episodes of partial or complete upper airway obstruction during sleep. The Obstructive Sleep Apnea Standards and Guidelines identify the roles and responsibilities of a dentist treating patients with OSA.

Documentation

Obstructive Sleep Apnea Standards and Guidelines

​The purpose of the Obstructive Sleep Apnea Standards and Guidlines document is to:

  • describe the interdisciplinary teamwork between dentists and physicians that is required for oral appliance (OA) therapy for adult patients being treated for snoring and/or OSA; and
  • clarify the role and responsibilities of each professional in the management of OA therapy in patients who are being treated for snoring and/or OSA.

Standard: A dentist's role in the treatment of OSA is adjunctive, supplementary and/or collaborative to that provided by the physician. A dentist may provide OA therapy only after receiving a written request or prescription from the attending physician, preferably a physician with advanced training in sleep medicine. Because of the increased rates of morbidity and mortality associated with OSA, a physician (family physician or sleep specialist) must assess the potential for other medical conditions, including OSA, before a dentist provides any treatment for primary snoring.

Home Testing Equipment for Obstructive Sleep Apnea

The treatment of obstructive sleep apnea requires interdisciplinary teamwork between dentists and medical practitioners.

Dentists who rent or provide home sleep apnea testing (HSAT) equipment to patients, through limited business corporations or otherwise, are reminded that the prescription or direction for the provision of overnight home sleep testing equipment must come from a registered medical practitioner. The Ministry of Health requires that anyone doing HSAT must be accredited by the College of Physicians and Surgeons' Diagnostic Accreditation Program (DAP).