THE country’s largest orthodontic laboratory has announced it is the exclusive supplier of a revolutionary device that is helping tackle snoring and sleep apnoea in America.

Sunderland-based Ashford Orthodontics has signed the deal with ProSomnus Sleep Technologies, the American market leader in sleep apnoea therapy devices, to bring their ProSomnus devices to the UK and Ireland.

Obstructive Sleep Apnoea (OSA) occurs when there is a blockage of the airways during sleep, often caused by the tongue and soft tissue at the back of the throat relaxing, causing the narrowing or complete closure of air passage.

It can lead to heavy snoring, but it can also wake people up many times a night, preventing them from falling into a deep sleep and stopping the body effectively healing itself, contributing to series health issues later in life.

Sean Thompson, managing director of Ashford, said: “We’re delighted to be partnering with ProSomnus, who have had huge success in tackling OSA with their Sleep and Snore Devices.

“More and more research is showing that intra-oral appliances like the ProSomnus Sleep and Snore Devices work really well. What they do is gently advance your lower jaw, keeping it in a slightly forward position so your airways are kept open. It’s simple, but really effective. I’ve seen several other devices to help ease the awful problems of OSA, but we feel that the ProSomnus devices are by far the best in terms of proven data as well as ease of use, comfort and build quality. Unlike others, the ProSomnus device is Cad-Cam designed and then precision milled from one solid piece, so there are no joins or attachments which can wear or break.

“The US Armed Forces, which routinely screens for OSA, have been so impressed by the effectiveness of the ProSomnus Sleep devices, they’ve been prescribing them for their active service personnel, eliminating the need to carry cumbersome breathing masks as they had in the past.

“ProSomnus are the leader in the precision intra-oral medical devices field, and with 54 million adults in the US being affected by OSA, they’re set to grow even further.

“OAT devices are used around the world, but are less common in the UK, where the NHS usually treats the problem with much less comfortable CPAP breathing masks.”

ProSomnus was named on the prestigious Inc Magazine 5000 list of America’s fastest-growing private companies in 2019.

ProSomnus CEO Len Liptak said: “We’re excited to partner with Ashford Orthodontics. Ashford has an excellent reputation amongst clinicians who have developed an expertise in providing Oral Appliance Therapy to patients with Obstructive Sleep Apnoea. Ashford also offers a technology competency that nicely complements ProSomnus’ precision, medical device, manufacturing approach.”

The exclusive distribution deal has been signed in time to allow Ashford to display these devices at the British Society of Dental Sleep Medicine (BSDSM) Members’ Day, held at the Hyatt Regency, Portman Square London, on Saturday, November 9.

Dr Aditi Desai, President of the BSDSM, will join Mr Liptak and Ashford to talk about the effectiveness of Oral Appliance Therapy (OAT) devices. She said: “There is enough evidence to support the use of custom-made oral appliances for snoring and Obstructive Sleep Apnoea as being effective with disease alleviation to be similar to CPAP in a lot of patients.

“Oral appliances made by companies like Prosomnus have not only shown to be superior in relieving symptoms of this debilitating condition but have demonstrated excellent patient acceptance due to being comfortable and durable, making them most cost effective.

“I’m excited and looking forward to working with them to duplicate their success in the USA, here in the UK.”

Ashford Orthodontics was established in 2001 and became a limited company with the addition of two news directors Craig Stevens and Graeme Winyard. It is now the largest orthodontic laboratory in the UK, employing more than 60 people at its Sunderland base.

The firm manufactures bespoke orthodontic appliances and has an extensive client base stretching across the UK and Europe to Australia and New Zealand.

If you’re interested in a PromSomnus device, ask your dentist to contact the BSDSM on your behalf.