Use a Snoring Mouthguard to Relieve Snoring and Apnea
A stop snoring mouthguard is an in-mouth plastic/resin device that fits over your top and bottom teeth and holds your lower jaw slightly forward... all night.
You've seen sporting mouthguards? Those are usually just a single piece that fits over the top teeth. The bottom teeth clamp the guard from below, against the top teeth. The sports guard's function is to protect the teeth from impacts to the face by hockey pucks, elbows and knees, sticks, other people's heads, and anything else that might strike your face during rough play.
The stop snoring mouth piece has both a top and a bottom fitted portion, and those are hinged at the back (near where your jaw is hinged). The connection is necessary, because the guard fits snugly around the upper teeth and the lower teeth and uses the leverage to force the lower set (and thus the lower jaw) forward of its natural/neutral resting position.
In other words, while you wear the stop snoring mouth guard, you have a bit of an underbite.
And what does that do?
Well, if it continues doing it while you sleep, then that underslung position, with the lower jaw forward, acts to prevent the opposite condition where your lower jaw goes slack and slides back, taking the base of the tongue with it, and helping to block your airway.
As explained on our other snoring pages, its the slackness of the throat and jaw and tongue and the crowding of the soft bits that seals off the throat, more or less, while you are asleep. If it's less, then you snore. If it's more - as in completely sealing the airway - then you experience apnea (your breathing is completely stopped).
Snoring has serious consequences of its own, but apnea is really serious and can kill you. If the stop snoring mouthguard can keep your lower jaw from sliding back when sleep causes your muscles to go slack, that can mean the difference between snoring and not. Thus, it can also mean the difference between suffering apnea and not.
Does MHT recommend any brands?
We haven't tried them all. Those that we have are much of a muchness. For us they seemed to work. There seem to be several brands for the same device from Australia. Not sure how that came about - some problem with patent laws? One has a lower price, but another provides two units for their higher price, so the pricing is pretty much a wash.
You said "seemed" to work?
Well, worked when used. But we (at least, the one who had the bad snoring problem) are not as fat as we were, and the snoring problem seems to be largely [pun intended] dissipating as the body weight diminishes.
We think that, if you are fat and snoring (or worse, have apnea), then the fat is likely the biggest cause. We think that a stop snoring mouthguard, or a jaw-bra, or even a throat spray can be a good way to reduce or eliminate snoring and apnea while you LOSE THE DAMN LARD! In the case of just snoring, it's a service and a kindness to your housemates until you get your weight down and stop snoring naturally. In the case of apnea, it's a way to keep yourself alive and avoid crippling stroke while you reduce your body-fat.
So it's all good, then?
It can be, but that's not guaranteed. Not everybody is a candidate. Not everybody is successful. For those for whom the device works, not everybody gets 100 percent relief. Here, below, are the main points for (pro) and against (con) that we see for these devices.
Stop Snoring MouthGuard PROS
- Quick and easy to fit (heat it, mash it against your teeth, let it cool in the new shape while formed against your teeth)
- Quick and easy to use every night
- Effective in many cases
- Works immediately (if it's going to) - first night, or a few days for results
- Invisible and unobtrusive in use
- Can also be helpful with teeth-grinding problems
- Inexpensive (several months for 30 dollars (give or take)
- It can bridge the gap while you deal with the underlying problem (perhaps by slow weight loss or perhaps by surgery that's scheduled next year).
- Gives you time to investigate other causes and solutions, while delaying your divorce. :-) (yes we said that on another page, too, and it was just as funny there)
- BONUS: If you lose a tooth for some reason, then wearing the snoring mouthguard every night could help prevent or slow the unwanted migration of adjoining teeth until you can get a replacement implant (that is what is called a "corner case" - pretty unlikely, but hey...).
Snoring MouthGuard CONS
- Must fit properly, or won't work
- Must be worn every night, all night
- Individual units lose effectiveness over time and must be replaced
- Not everybody can tolerate them
- Not for anybody who is undergoing orthodontic treatment (braces or any other treatment that moves/rearranges teeth
- Not for some people who have jaw-joint problems - though, for others, it might be the solution...
- Places some stress on teeth, which might cause unwanted movement, especially for someone who has undergone dental rearrangement (orthodontic treatment)... you don't want to ruin several years and thousands of dollars worth of orthodontistry with a plastic snore remedy...
Overall Thoughts About the Stop Snoring Mouth Piece
If somebody is trying to sell you one for more than $100, we'd wonder why you'd want to buy it. They're just molded thermoplastic resin, after all. For under a hundred bucks, definitely worth trying.
Possibly a "custom" unit from a dentist or orthodontist might have some additional value and therefore cost more, but only if this is a dentist or orthodontist that you visit. We don't care how many degrees they have after their names, if they are selling it remotely (mail-order or internet sales), and are not fitting it and adjusting it in person. Unless you are getting personal, hands-on fitting and service, then there's no added value for you and any price over 50 or 60 bucks is questionable.
Why would a custom appliance from a dentist be better? Well, they wouldn't use the semi-malleable thermoplastic that is needed for one-size-can-fit-all models. Instead, they would take an impression of your teeth, make molds, and pour a hard-setting resin to make your custom-fitted appliances.
The resulting snoring mouthguard would be at least as good a fit as the thermo-molded mass-market appliances, but would be far tougher and therefore could last for years without losing effectiveness. Contrast that with the thermoplastic ones, which slowly stretch and must be re-fitted, and which can be heated and re-fitted only a few times before they lose their properties (and you then must buy a replacement). Anyway, that's why a dentist-made unit could be worth more money.
If it works for you, a stop snoring mouthguard is much less intrusive and less expensive (in so many ways) than CPAP. It's less silly-looking and possibly more comfortable than an externally-worn jaw-bra. It's cheaper, within a short time, than single-use nasal strips that hold your nostrils open at night.
It's certainly a better longer-term option than throat sprays.
It's also way better than ingesting chemicals to fix a mechanical problem, because there is no such thing as an ingested drug that targets just the tissues in the throat and doesn't have (probably unwanted) effects all over your body. You'll see these words repeated on all the other pages for mechanical stop-snoring aids, because we really, really believe that pharmaceuticals are a bad idea for snoring relief... even for apnea relief.
Try this one, or the jaw-bra before getting involved with pharmaceuticals, CPAP, or surgery. It's not that we're recommending against CPAP, if you have obstructive sleep apnea, but if a ten-dollar piece of plastic (for which you pay 30 or 60 dollars) can solve the problem, then why go to all the trouble and expense of CPAP? However, if you do have a sleep apnea problem, you and your doctor should keep tabs to:
a) ensure that the plastic stop snoring mouthguard actually makes the apnea problem go away
b) ensure that it doesn't come back after some time, even though you continue using the stop snoring mouthguard.
If this page wasn't where you wanted to be, then from this 'stop snoring mouthguard' page, go back to the home page.
Or, return to the snoring section intro page page
where we have a table of links to all the other snoring-related pages in this section of MHT
PLEASE be aware that by using this site you agree to our Terms and Conditions.
If you hold your mouth just right, and...
click Terms and Conditions you might get more than you bargained for.