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Meet Dr. Rosemarie Rohatgi of San Diego Sleep Therapy in Sorrento Mesa

Today we’d like to introduce you to Dr. Rosemarie Rohatgi.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Dr. Rohatgi. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
It’s difficult to get rest when your father is snoring with decibels that surpass foghorn level. I refused to believe that this is normal. We have all heard jokes about other people snoring; however, it gets more personal when that person is you and you’re waking up tired with a “sleepless night hangover” that follows you into the afternoon. I grew up listening to my dad’s loud snoring and started to piece together why every year we needed a fresh coat of paint in some bedrooms, always those closest to his room.

After completing dental school, I visited my parents one weekend and I couldn’t believe my ears. I started researching this undefined area and found a simple device to fabricate for my dad. His experience of better sleep and restful night for my mother was enough for me to become a believer in the field of Dental Sleep Medicine. This is where it all originally began.

I had sold my dental practice and had been associating for a few years. I make the tough decision of opening an all Dental Sleep Medicine practice, without practicing General Dentistry. This was unheard of. No one had ever done this. Most providers of this period were offering this as an extension of their existing dental practice. I started from ground zero, literally. I took out a sizable bank loan, found a location properly zoned for medical (not such an easy task), and broke ground to build the specifications of my Dental Sleep Practice, the first in the United States to start from scratch. It all started with me, myself and I. Patients saw “me”. The phones were answered by “myself”. “I” did it all without any assistants. Eight years later, I have five staff on my team, a thriving practice. This was an undefined field. Now many dentists are wanting to sell their general dental practice and open an all sleep practice. In the past, I was sadly told, “You can’t do this. You need to have a general dental practice to support your sleep practice.” Even worse, one of these people was a woman. I am so glad she was wrong as I thought all along. Because now, not only do I have a private practice that is growing year on year, but I have the enjoyment of helping people keep their marriages together, live longer lives, and sleep better. How lucky am I?

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
It was easy, then everybody would be doing this. Many providers have a hard time getting started because it is difficult. It is certainly a learning process. There were some struggles and are still some obstacles. It can be challenging to get some medical physicians to understand that oral appliance therapy (OAT) works. I have an excel spreadsheet of data from hundreds of my patients showing how our therapy is efficacious.

So, as you know, we’re impressed with San Diego Sleep Therapy – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.
San Diego Sleep Therapy (SDST) is the very first practice in the United States that was started from scratch and focuses only on Dental Sleep Medicine (DSM). We specialize exclusively on fabricating custom fitted oral appliances that you wear while asleep to treat Snoring and Obstructive Sleep Apnea. Many patients are PAP intolerant or may choose to use combination therapy, PAP and the oral appliance. I am Triple Board Certified in this field of DSM and I’m known for delivering the best customer service and experience with our patients. As a company, I am most proud to hear my patients’ life changing stories of how our oral appliance has changed their lives, how we have been able to be a part of giving their life back to them and how we are bringing couples back together in the bedroom. This is why I love to come to work.

Rosemarie Rohatgi, DMD, is Triple Boarded in Dental Sleep Medicine (DSM). She was the First dentist in the United States to pioneer opening a practice that exclusively treats DSM. She is the First and Only Female Diplomate of the American Board of Dental Sleep Medicine in the Greater San Diego area. Dr. Rohatgi been practicing for over twenty-one years and dedicates her entire practice to DSM, as the Founder and Medical Director of San Diego Sleep Therapy, which is San Diego’s only exclusively focused Dental Sleep Medical Practice. This is the very first practice in the United States that was started from scratch and focuses only on DSM. Dr. Rohatgi is an honorary guest speaker and is often invited to speak to graduate residents of both University of California San Diego and Veterans Administration of San Diego. She is an expert, leader and consultant in the field of sleep.

She is an active member of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine and served on the Committee on Narcolepsy 2014 – 2015. She is also an active member of the American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine while having served on the Committee on Annual Meetings in 2012 – 2013 and Committee on Education for 2013 – 2015. She completed her Sleep Medicine Mini-Residency at UCLA and participated in UCLA’s Sleep Medicine Study Club. She is the Past-President of San Diego’s Academy of General Dentistry and served as a Board Member for both the Parkinson’s Association of San Diego and American Parkinson’s Disease Association. She has been nominated for three consecutive years, as Woman of the Year by San Diego Magazine in 2013, 2014 and 2015. Dr. Rohatgi is actively involved with the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, California Sleep Society, and American Thoracic Society.

She graduated from the University of Oregon with a full academic scholarship. She received numerous awards while in college and delivered a speech to her graduating class of General Science majors. That same year, she was accepted by Oregon Health Science University School of Dentistry and granted another academic scholarship. She served two years on the American Student Dental Association as Consultant on National Dental Examinations and on the American Dental Association as Commissioner on National Dental Examinations. Dr. Rohatgi was elected Student Body Public Relations Officer at OHSU and a teaching assistant for the Endodontic Department. She conducted research in the Oral Pathology Department and was a teaching assistant for the Gross Anatomy Department. She graduated with honors in Endodontics and Removable Prosthodontics.

While not attending continuing education courses, she loves spending quality time with her husband and two young children. She has a strong affinity for interior design, remodeling homes, international travel and wine.

So, what’s next? Any big plans?
As a leader, consultant and expert in the field of DSM, I have been asked to speak at a few national meetings this year. Those include: American Sleep and Breathing Academy Annual Meeting in April 2018 and another upcoming sleep meeting in May 2018.

As a growing company, there are many frequent changes year on year. We never want to stay stagnant. We are always seeking to better this field and our profession with more efficient processes so we can serve our patients to a higher level of care. First, we have purchased a digital and premier scanner in January 2018. This means no more impressions and no more mouthfuls of goop for patients. Instead we are now taking digital scans with a small wand which allows us to view patient models of their teeth and soft tissues in 3D (dimensional). We can view the scanned model with the patient, in digital format and move the mouth around and manipulate the image easily on the computer. It’s simply amazing and incredibly precise which equals better treatment for the patient.

We also most recently purchased in 2018, a 3D cone beam which allows us to view patient’s airway in 3 dimension. We can see where the restriction lies and if the appliance will aid with the obstruction. There is much less radiation than the old school cone beams and x-ray machines that only took 2D images. It’s amazing how much information we are able to extract from a short amount of radiation. This is complete state of the art DSM.

We will be looking at accepting even more insurance companies for this year. Also, we are the only Medicare provider in San Diego to offer DSM.

Pricing:

  • Most Medicare plans cover this treatment.
  • Most private insurance plans cover this treatment.
  • We offer cash discounts for patients who have no medical insurance

Contact Info:

sleep apnea medical chart

Asleep At The Wheel

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