How does the anti-snoring mouthpiece (mandibular advancement brace) work?

How does the anti-snoring mouthpiece (mandibular advancement brace) work?

Important points Summary
What is an anti-snoring orthosis? An anti-snoring orthosis is a medical device worn in the mouth or nose during sleep to prevent upper airway obstruction, the main cause of snoring and sleep apnea. It moves the lower jaw slightly forward to clear the passage of air through the pharynx.
Advantages and disadvantages of orthotics The advantages are their proven effectiveness, ease of use and the fact that they help you get back to restful sleep. The disadvantage is that it takes time to adapt at first, and may cause temporary discomfort.
When to use an anti-snoring brace? Orthoses are recommended to treat bothersome snoring, mild to moderate sleep apnea, as a travel solution for severe apnea, in cases of intolerance to continuous positive airway pressure treatment, and to prevent bruxism.
How to choose the best orthosis? Consider comfort, proven effectiveness, fit (preferably custom), quality materials, cost and ease of maintenance.
Reviews and comparisons of the best orthotics The text provides a detailed comparison of the best mandibular, lingual and nasal advancement orthoses in 2024, with their advantages, disadvantages and indicative prices.
 

What is an anti-snoring orthosis?

An anti-snoring orthosis is a medical device worn in the mouth or nostril during sleep.

The device is designed to prevent upper airway obstruction, the main cause of snoring and sleep apnea.

There are different types of orthoses, but the basic principle remains the same: to move the lower jaw slightly forward to clear the air passage in the pharynx.

Advantages and disadvantages of orthotics

The main advantages of anti-snoring orthotics are:

💊 their proven effectiveness,

💊 ease of use,

💊 the fact that they help you get back to a good night's sleep.

They significantly reduce snoring and mild-to-moderate apnea.

However, it takes time to adapt to wearing the orthosis, and some patients may experience temporary discomfort at first.

Custom orthotics vs. ready-to-use orthotics

You can choose between:

💊  ready-to-use thermoformable orthotics,

💊 made-to-measure orthoses made by a dentist or orthodontist.

 Custom orthotics generally provide better support and an optimal fit, but are more expensive.

▶  Thermoformable orthotics are a cost-effective solution for most patients suffering from snoring or mild-to-moderate apnea.

What are the types of anti-snoring orthosis?

Mandibular advancement orthosis

This is the most common type of orthosis and one of the most effective.

This is a dental splint that holds the lower jaw slightly forward.

This prevents the tongue from constricting the passage of air through the pharynx , thus preventing snoring and obstructive apnea.

These orthoses are often custom-made for optimum fit.

Lingual orthosis

This type of brace holds the tongue forward by means of a small plastic or silicone device placed behind the lower teeth.

This prevents the tongue from falling into the pharynx during sleep and obstructing the airway.

✅ This is an interesting solution for people who cannot tolerate mandibular advancement braces.

Nasal orthosis

Less common is the nasal orthosis, a small device inserted into the nostrils to keep them open and facilitate breathing through the nose.

It can be useful in cases of nasal snoring or recurrent nasal congestion.

L'orthèse intranasale

When to use an anti-snoring brace?

For annoying snoring

Anti-snoring orthotics are recommended as a first-line treatment for bothersome and regular snoring.

They clear the upper airways and prevent the soft palate vibrations that cause snoring.

For mild to moderate sleep apnea

In the case of mild to moderate obstructive sleep apnea, i.e. less than 30 apneas/hypopneas per hour, a mandibular advancement orthosis is often prescribed.

It is an effective alternative to continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP).

As a travel solution

For people who suffer from severe apnea but need to travel frequently, an anti-snoring orthosis is a portable, discreet option to complement or temporarily replace the CPAP device.

In case of intolerance to CPAP treatment

Some patients cannot tolerate wearing a mask connected to a continuous positive airway pressure machine.

In such cases, the mandibular advancement orthosis can be proposed as an alternative, even for treating severe apnea.

To prevent bruxism

By gently holding the jaw forward, anti-snoring orthotics also protect teeth from night-time grinding caused by bruxism, a disorder often associated with sleep apnea.

How to choose the best anti-snoring orthosis?

There are several criteria to consider when choosing the anti-snoring orthosis best suited to your needs:

💊 Comfort: the brace must be comfortable to wear all night long. Choose models made from flexible materials such as silicone or thermoformable resins, which mould to the shape of your mouth.

💊 Effectiveness: check out the opinions and clinical studies on the real effectiveness of the orthosis in reducing snoring and apnea. Mandibular advancement orthoses are generally the most effective.

💊 Fit: for optimum support, opt for a custom-made brace, made from impressions of your teeth and jaws by a dentist or orthodontist.

💊 Materials: choose orthotics made from medical-grade plastics or resins, free from BPA and other harmful components. They are more durable and easier to clean.

💊 Cost: prices vary from a few dozen to several hundred euros, depending on the model. Compare rates according to your needs and financial means.

💊 Care: choose a brace that's easy to clean and disinfect regularly to avoid mouth infections. Some are even dishwasher safe.

Orthotics reimbursed by Health Insurance

In France, custom-made mandibular advancement orthoses may be reimbursed by the Health Insurance, on medical prescription and after prior agreement, in cases of moderate to severe sleep apnea.

Opinion and comparison of the best orthotics in 2024

Mandibular advancement orthosis: recommended models

Model Price Advantages Disadvantages
Oniris €69 - €119 ✅ HAS validated, thermomoldable, good efficacy Minor discomfort at the beginning
SomnoGuard AP €99 - €199 Adjustable, 2 sizes available Less effective than custom-made
SomnoFit (custom-made) €350 - €500 ✅ Perfect fit,
✅ very effective
High cost

Lingual orthosis: recommended models

Model Price Advantages Disadvantages
ZQuiet €59 ✅ Space-saving, efficient Risk of sore throat
VitalSleep €69 ✅ Adjustable, good tolerance Less efficient than mandibular

Nasal orthosis: recommended models

Model Price Advantages Disadvantages
Back2Sleep €39 ✅ Easy to use
✅ Medical grade material
Possible rare nasal discomfort
Rhinomed Pronto €29 ✅ Good nasal dilation Possible nasal discomfort

FAQ about anti-snoring orthotics

Q. What are the possible side effects of orthotics?

The main side effect at the start of using a mandibular advancement orthosis is mild discomfort or pain due to the new jaw position.

This usually disappears after a few days' adjustment.

Q. How long does it take to get used to wearing an orthosis?

The adaptation period varies from one individual to another, but averages between 5 and 10 days.

We recommend wearing the brace for a few hours a day before bedtime to ease the transition.

Q. How to care for and clean an orthosis

To ensure good oral hygiene and prolong the life of your brace, we recommend cleaning it daily with soap water and soaking it once or twice a week in a disinfectant bath.

Avoid colored mouthwashes, which could stain it.

Gentle brushing with a toothbrush is also recommended.

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