Do Regular Mouth Guards Work For Treating Obstructive Sleep Apnea?

The key to a good night’s sleep is a comfortable oral device – but how do you know which device will be effective in treating sleep apnea? 


Boil and Bite Devices

Sometimes, your doctor may recommend an off-the-shelf oral appliance. These are commonly called “boil and bite” devices, since you put them in boiling water to make the plastic soft, and then bite into them to mold them to your teeth. However, clinical studies have shown that oral appliances that are custom-made for your mouth and teeth are superior to boil and bite devices. 

What Do Clinical Studies Say?*

  • Clinical Effectiveness. According to clinical studies, on average, custom-made devices reduce apnea events by 23% more for mild sleep apnea sufferers than boil and bite devices do. A custom-made device is more likely to be effective in reducing apnea events.
  • Better Sleep. In one study, sleep apnea sufferers agreed that they were less sleepy the next day, after wearing a custom-made appliance the night before, when compared to wearing a boil and bite appliance.
  • Compliance. One clinical trial showed an average of 6.5 hours of use for a custom-made oral device – vs. 5 hours for a boil and bite device.
  • Comfort. In one study, 74% of patients preferred custom-made oral appliances over a boil and bite device.


A boil and bite sleep apnea device that you mold to your teeth is cheaper, but studies show that they are less comfortable, less effective, and worn less than oral appliances like SomnoDent® that are made specifically for you. 

“Cheaper {oral} devices tend not to last as long, and they fall out of your mouth too quickly at night. They cause tooth pain, and, most worryingly, they seem to change the bite pattern that you have and change the position of your jaw, so you do get some pain in your jaw joint,” says Dr. Vik Veer, ENT Surgeon. “If a {sleep} dentist fits these devices, there’s less of a chance of causing these problems.”*

Why Should I Trust SomnoMed® With My Sleep Apnea Treatment?

As the world’s largest supplier of oral sleep apnea devices, SomnoMed® will make your device to the same medical device quality standards that are used for pacemakers. We’ll make sure your device is comfortable for your first night – and every night’s – sleep.

Start your journey here:

*Reference: Johal et al “Ready-made versus custom-made mandibular advancement appliances in obstructive sleep apnea: A systematic review and meta-analysis” Sleep Res. 2018;27



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