David B. Rosen, D.M.D.- Practice Limited to Periodontics, Dental Implants & Sleep Disordered Breathing (Sleep Apnea & Snoring)


Tongue Retaining Devices

Tongue Retaining Device The Tongue Retaining Device was first developed by a physician in 1979. It is a bubble shaped device made of soft polyvinyl. The patient's teeth rest in custom fitted grooves which are extended to form a 'bubble' that sticks out from between the lips. The patient positions his teeth in the grooves, sticks his tongue forward into the bubble until suction grabs and hold the tongue in place.

The TRD is found to be most useful in patients with very large tongues, poor dental health, no teeth, chronic joint pain, or if their sleep apnea is worse when lying on their backs than when they lie on their sides at night.

Patient Wearing TRD

Tongue Retaining DeviceThis appliance cannot be used by people who are tongue-tied, so overweight that they are more than 50 percent above their ideal body weight, grind their teeth at night, or have chronically stuffy noses.

Patients complain most often about irritation on the tip of their tongue (which can be painful, or cause irritation to spicy and salty foods). Patients also require practice in swallowing with the appliance in-place, because the tongue cannot move in its normal pattern. This appliance also forces nasal breathing and can be difficult to use if the patient has a stuffy nose or allergies. One form of this appliance comes with "breathing tubes" on either side of the front bubble, but no research has been done using this form of the appliance.

TRD with Oral Breathing Tubes

Tongue Retaining DeviceThe TRD works best when patient combine it with "behavioral changes" such as weight loss and a sleeping on their sides, (avoiding sleeping on their backs). This is the only appliance that works consistently well in patients who have no teeth.








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Copyright � 2003 David B. Rosen, D.M.D.
Last modified: February 21, 2009