What are dental anti-snoring devices?
Dental anti-snoring devices, as the name implies, are oral devices that stop a person from snoring. This is assuming the snoring isn’t a result of a medical condition. They can look a bit like a sports mouth guard but are very effective in opening up the airway when worn during sleep. The dentist is actually the front line in treating snoring and all the appliances involve posturing the mandible (lower jaw forward) to stop the tongue falling back thus preventing the person snoring. Dental anti-snoring devices should be your first consideration if you are a snorer and can help in preventing mild to moderate cases of sleep apnea (breathing is paused for short periods of time while sleeping). Anti-snoring devices are pretty comfortable, and it only takes a little getting used to. They are obviously portable so you can easily tuck them away in their case for when you travel. Occasionally surgery and more invasive treatment is required but anti-snoring devices should always be considered first… Ideal for people who are afraid of more significant treatment; all it takes is a couple of impressions, a bite and a few days to be made in the lab.
Why should I wear anti-snoring devices?
Aside from giving the people you love around you some peace and quiet when sleeping, wearing dental anti-snoring devices has many advantages for you, too, including:
- Improved sleeping patterns
- Improved quality of life (better sleep, less grumpiness!)
- Reduced frequency and loudness of snoring
- Improved airflow
- Reduced nasal blockages
- Corrects the position of your tongue and lower jaw
- Decreased chance of getting heart disease (yes- there are studies linking sleep apnea to heart disease)
- More energy and reduced tiredness
It’s amazing how snoring affects so many intimate relationships. See us today in Maroubra and enquire about getting it sorted. It seems it only gets worse with age, as muscles tend to become more relaxed- so start getting a good night sleep for yourself and your partner sooner rather than later.
Why do I snore?
Snoring happens when the muscles and soft tissues in the back of your throat collapse during sleep partly blocking your airway. As you breath these vibrate with the air passing over them creating a sound. This sound that varies from extremely mild, to louder than you could possibly imagine, is what we call snoring. There are also other factors that play a role in snoring, examples include:
- Alcohol (narrows the airways by relaxing your neck muscles when you sleep)
- Weight gain (especially when there is a large amount of fat in your neck, again blocking your airway)
- Sleeping posture- lying on the back is the classic position which most people snore in
- Sleep apnea
- Incorrect position of the tongue
- Age (airways become narrower as we grow older)
- Certain medications
- Certain medical problems
Are there any practical solutions that I can do to help stop snoring?
Yes! You can also try doing some of these to reduce your snoring:
- Sleeping on your side
- Losing weight
- Quitting smoking
- Avoiding drinking alcohol
- Maintaining clean pillow cases and sheets to avoid allergic reactions
- Keeping hydrated
- Having enough sleep every night
- Eating healthily
- Getting into a regular sleep pattern
These will all help but most snorers do require a dental made device to change the position of their jaw in order to stop snoring.
Are there other things I need to know about snoring?
Snoring devices, because you are always wearing them at night, can lead to some changes in your bite and movement of your teeth. For most people this isn’t an issue, they are just happy their partner will sleep next to them and they can get a good night’s sleep. If you’re tired all day, falling asleep, or have a general lack of energy you may be snoring or be suffering from a level of sleep apnea. Ask your partner what they notice about your sleeping patterns… even get them to record you as proof- sometimes people like to deny they are snorers or don’t believe they snore to the extent that they do!