What should I look for when buying a snoring mouthpiece?

I snore in my sleep and I am looking for possible solutions. I have researched snoring mouthpieces and was wondering what features should I be looking for when buying them? Also, should they be custom fitted or can I buy them over the counter?

Doctors Answers (2)

Timothy J. Delcambre, DDS, MHA
Answered on: 10/3/2013

Features: 1. Comfort 2. Stability 3. Endurance 4. Actually reduces snoring 5. Does no harm Some features you want to have are: 1. Comfort: Over the counter (OTC) products are usually one-size-fits-all stock items; you will be wearing this for 6-8 hours a night 2. Stability: Your teeth should not be loose/mobile; you should have no active infections or abscesses; wearing an appliance on an infected abscessing tooth may "stir up a hornet's nest" 3. Endurance: Your jaw muscles and tongue are very strong and you may find that OTC appliances don't last long due to the stresses placed on them over many nights. 4. Actually reduces snoring: buyer beware: truth in advertisement. 5. Does no harm: With your lower jaw forward, the little pads that sit between your jaw joints and your skull may be pulled out of position causing jaw clicking, locking or pain; your teeth may be moved out of position if not properly stabilized. In my opinion, a custom fitted appliance made after an appropriate oral/dental evaluation is better than an OTC appliance. Follow-up and proper maintenance of your appliance is most important also. The initial outlay will be more for a custom-fitted appliance but it will be better in the long term.

Joseph Lee, DDS, FICOI
Answered on: 10/3/2013

We can't recommend specifics for oral appliances without first completing a through clinical exam as we don't what is causing your symptoms. A custom oral appliance is always best as it needs to be fit properly, have the features that work best for you, and is adjustable so we can obtain the best results for your particular situation.