TAP® Appliance

Free At Last and Quiet Too


Photographs/Drawings courtesy Airway Management, Inc.
 

There is a new solution available to those who snore or have sleep apnea – The Thornton Adjustable Positioner® (TAP®), an oral appliance similar to an athletic mouth guard that is worn while sleeping. Developed with advanced technology, the TAP® reduces sleep apnea and associated health risks without the need for surgery, medications, or other more cumbersome therapy.

 

 


The TAP® is a registered trademark of Airway Management, Inc.


A Unique Approach

The TAP® is a medical device that treats sleep disordered breathing. It alleviates snoring and sleep apnea by holding the mandible forward during sleep to prevent the tongue and soft tissue of the throat from collapsing into the airway. The TAP® is based on the same principle as cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). The airway must be open to allow air to pass through the throat.

The TAP® device consists of an Upper Tray that fits over the upper teeth and a Lower Tray that fits over the lower teeth. A hook mechanism attached to the Upper Tray fits into a Socket attached to the Lower Tray and positions the lower jaw forward, preventing the soft tissue of the throat from collapsing and obstructing the airway. The Adjustment Key of the TAP® permits the patient to adjust the protrusion of the lower jaw to the most effective and comfortable position.

The TAP® is a registered trademark of Airway Management, Inc. 


Photographs/Drawings courtesy Airway Management, Inc.


Fit and Function


Photographs/Drawings courtesy Airway Management, Inc.

The unique design of the TAP® permits the patient to adjust the device and the degree to which the mandible is pulled forward. This allows the patient to be actively involved in the treatment of his/her own sleep-disordered breathing.

For example, if the patient begins to snore or have apneic episodes after wearing the TAP® for a few weeks, he/she can turn the Adjustment Key to adjust the protrusion of the lower jaw to the most effective and comfortable position to stop the episodes.

 

The TAP® is a registered trademark of Airway Management, Inc.


Making the TAP®

The metal components found in the TAP® are composed of medical grade stainless steel. There is also a TAP® Nickel-Free (TAP® NF) that is made of a nickel free, biocompatible alloy to those who may be allergic to nickel.

The outer shells are a thermoplastic orthodontic polycarbonate hard material, and the TAP® is then available in two significantly different linings, ThermAcryl™ and Triple Laminate.


ThermAcryl™

The ThermAcryl™ lining is a unique polymer that becomes soft when heated, and can be molded to the patient’s dentition when seated in the mouth. Once the ThermAcryl™ hardens, it has less than 1% shrinkage so it snaps tightly over the patient’s teeth. The ThermAcryl™ appliance can be easily relined and modified to accommodate a patient’s changing dentistry.

 

 

 

The TAP® is a registered trademark of Airway Management, Inc.



Photographs/Drawings courtesy Airway Management, Inc. 
 


 Triple Laminate (TL)



Photographs/Drawings courtesy Airway Management, Inc.

The Triple Laminate (TL) lining offers a different comfort level and seating approach than that of the ThermAcryl™. The TL lining is a dual laminate thermoplastic orthodontic material, which is soft and flexible and suctions around the patient’s teeth for a firm grip. For some patients, the TL lining is a much more comfortable option than the ThermAcryl™.

 

 


The TAP® is a registered trademark of Airway Management, Inc.


 

A denture/aligner/retainer ultrasonic cleaner and an effervescent tablet can be used to clean and freshen the TAP appliance. 


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