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Snoring occurs when air passes through relaxed tissues like the tongue. Not only can it disrupt sleep, but it may be a sign of obstructive sleep apnea. Many experts recommend lifestyle changes such as weight loss, side sleeping, avoiding alcohol close to bedtime, treating nasal congestion with nasal steroids, and avoiding OTC sleeping pills that contain sedatives such as diphenhydramine. However, if you have tried these measures and you are still snoring, thankfully there are products—such as adhesive nose strips and mouthpieces—that are designed to widen tight nostrils or close the mouth to prevent snoring.
It’s important to know that devices are not one-size-fits-all. There are myriad products, such as nose strips, mouthpieces, and pillows. Nose strips are helpful if you have tight nostrils and experience snoring as a result of blocked nasal passages. If your snoring is caused by open mouth or sleep positioning, try mouthpieces and pillows instead.
We researched dozens of anti-snoring devices and evaluated them for material, price, sizing, ingredients, and adjustability. Each of the anti-snoring devices chosen in this article was determined to be the best of these factors.
Here are the best anti snoring devices on the market.
People who snore because of mouth-related issues may find that an apparatus like the Vosaro Anti-Snoring Chin Strap helps to resolve a lot of their problems—like sleeping with an open mouth or a displaced jaw position—without creating others, like the possible discomfort of sleeping with an oral mouthpiece. But it won’t work well for people who snore because of congestion, so if that’s you, we recommend Breathe Right Lavender Nasal Strips for an easy (and instantly relaxing!) way to open up nasal passages and sleep better.
if you do think an oral device is right for you, one of our experts recommends the Snore Rx Stop Snoring Mouthguard, which can be customized to fit your unique bite and adjusted incrementally for a comfortable fit.
What to Look for in an Anti-Snoring Device
Nose strips: Out of the types of anti-snoring products, slapping a nasal strip over your nose may seem like the easiest fix. All you have to do is stick it on and let it go to work as you sleep. However, this may only be helpful for people who are experiencing snoring as a result of a blockage of nasal passages. According to Alan R. Schwartz, MD, adjunct professor at the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine and professor at Johns Hopkins University, a “breathe-right” strip may not be helpful for everyone. “They may offer a partial solution, but remember that snoring is due to collapse of tissues in your throat rather than at your nostrils. So the strips might only work for people with tight nostrils,” he says.
mouthpiece: An anti-snoring mouthpiece may be one of the most annoying ways to correct sleeping (any sort of mouthpiece is typically uncomfortable), but Bernadette Judge, RN, (Nurse B), operations manager of San Diego’s Nupeutics, says these are one of the most popular over the counter ways to fix snoring. “Snoring mouthpieces were designed to help stop snoring by moving the lower jaw forward. Moving the jaw widens the air space allowing you to maintain an open airway, reducing vibration of the tissues in your throat,” she says. However, she points out that “studies are inconclusive whether or not they work.”
pillows: According to Judge, pillows may be helpful if you’re naturally someone who sleeps on their back and you’re looking for help to sleep on your side. Sleeping on your side is the best position to sleep in if you snore. In fact, sleeping “positional therapy” is a great way to start treating snoring,” she notes. “By sleeping on your side, you will alleviate the inflamed compressed airways allowing them to open up, which reduces snoring.”
The warnings with each of these different anti-snoring tools are minimal, especially with a pillow, breathe-right strips, or mouth guard. The mouth guards are large enough that choking would be impossible, and at most, you may experience slight skin irritation from sticking a strip on your nose throughout the night.
It’s important to recognize when you should see a doctor about snoring and when you should discontinue use of over-the-counter products if they are not helping to alleviate snoring over a period of time (one to two weeks). “Snoring can become a problem if you experience breathing pauses during sleep, gasping or choking at night, chest pain at night, insomnia, sleepiness during the day, brain fog, and waking up with a headache,” says Judge. “These are all signs of obstructive sleep apnea and you should be evaluated by your physician.”
Some anti-snoring treatments are a one-and-done product, like the pillows and chin strap. These are reusable and will last for years when taken care of properly. Other solutions, like nasal strips, are a one-time use disposable treatment, like a Band-Aid. They may work well, but keep in mind the cost and waste add up over time.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do anti snoring devices work?
Snoring is the result of turbulent airflow and vibrations in the soft tissues of the upper airway, says Kevin Motz, MD, assistant professor of otolaryngology and director of sleep surgery at Johns Hopkins Medicine. The devices are aimed at increasing airflow, stiffening the upper airway, or reducing turbulent airflow, which occurs if the tissue has become narrow and collapsed. “These work by dilating the airway in some manner, or preventing what we call flow limitation,” Dr. Motz says.
How effective are anti-snoring devices?
“They can be moderately effective in reducing snoring,” says Dr. motz. “There are a handful of approaches that can be taken.” These may be as simple as encouraging someone to sleep on their side or may be more complex. “Chin straps try to keep the jaw shut,” he says. “A mouth guard or oral appliance, which tends to be for treatment of sleep apnea as well, pulls the jaw forward and opens up space for breathing, so that turbulent airflow or vibration of the soft pallet doesn’t happen.”
But snoring can be a sign of sleep apnea, and if this is severe, the person should be evaluated to make sure that there is no evidence of this, Dr. Motz says.
Can you use multiple types of anti-snoring devices at once?
“It depends on what length that somebody wants to go,” Dr. Motz says. “I would say that most people who are snoring loudly enough to be disruptive should probably consider a sleep study, or at least an evaluation to assess their risk of obstructive sleep apnea.” Still, if this is not an issue, there is nothing to preclude you from trying several of these. “They’re fairly safe and noninvasive,” Dr. Motz says.
Are there any anti-snoring devices unsafe for children?
dr. Motz advises against treating snoring in a child with over-the-counter devices without some guidance from a medical professional. “There are very different criteria for assessing sleep apnea in children, and snoring in children can be more impactful in their day-to-day function and cognitive development,” he says.
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