Sleep Apnea Scanning Best Practices

Below, we've outlined sleep apnea scanning best practice techniques that will increase the likelihood of success for your case: 

Required Scans

  • Upper arch
  • Lower arch
  • Protruding bite scans
    • Click the link above for more details on capturing a protruding bite scan.

Room Set Up

  • Turn off any overhead dental lighting and loupe lights while scanning.

Scanner Prep

Moisture Control

Saliva is the leading cause of voids and distortions, so it's essential that you keep the area dry before and during scanning.

  • Try using active suction or compressed air - one person can scan while another can work to keep the area dry.

Cheek and Lip Retraction

Use tools around the office to your advantage. Cheek retractors help keep the cheek away from the hard-to-get vestibule areas.

Scanner Positioning

Always turn on your scanner over the occlusal surface of a molar/premolar when beginning a scan.

  • Tilt the scanner on both sides of the patient's arch.
  • Do not just hover directly over the occlusal surface - try different angles.
  • Slow down when scanning the posterior teeth - scanning too quickly leads to voids.

Areas to Capture

Do your best to capture the full arch and scan those hard-to-reach back teeth. Try to ensure there aren’t any voids/distortions on the scans (this is to ensure we make a product that most accurately fits the patient’s mouth).

  • Capture all the way around back molars on upper and lower scans.
  • Keep the jaw stable with no movement between each bite can.
  • Avoid holes and distortions.

Case Submission and Dismissal Checklist 

  • Are all surfaces of the posterior teeth captured?
  • Are both of the retromolar pads captured?
  • Are there any distortions, holes, or layering?
  • Is the entire palate captured?

Examples of Good Scans

Captures vestibule areas - lingual and buccal


Captures at least 5 mm of the lingual and buccal gum tissue.

Captures the full palate.

Captures both retromolar pads.

Examples of Bad Scans

Contain voids.

Contain layering.

Contain holes.

Contain distortions.

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