Treat Snoring with Custom Mouth Guards

By John Rink DDS on July 21, 2015

A woman covering her ears with a pillow while a man appears to be snoring in bed next to her If snoring is keeping you or your partner from getting a good night's sleep, it's time to take action. Dentist John Rink offers general dentistry treatments to reduce snoring and help you or your partner get a good night's rest. In many cases, the symptoms of snoring can be alleviated with customized mouth guards. To find out if mouth guards can help you, we welcome you to schedule a consultation at the Charleston Center for Cosmetic and Restorative Dentistry.

What Causes Snoring?

Snoring occurs when the soft palate, the muscles in the roof of the mouth, the tongue, and the throat relax to the point that they narrow or block the airway. As the airway becomes narrowed, airflow becomes more forceful, vibrating the tissue, which is audible as snoring. Snoring has a number of causes ranging from drinking alcohol before sleeping to sleep apnea. If you suffer from snoring, it's important to speak to your dentist or physician to determine its causes. Some causes of snoring include:

  • Alcohol consumption: Alcohol causes the throat muscles to relax, which can cause airway obstruction, leading to snoring.
  • Nasal issues: People who have a deviated nasal septum or chronic nasal congestion may suffer from snoring.
  • Oral anatomy: The natural anatomy of a person's mouth can cause snoring. In some cases, tissues within the mouth can narrow or block the airway, resulting in snoring. This may result from a thick or low soft palate or a large uvula.
  • Weight: Being overweight can increase snoring since excess weight can result in extra tissue at the back of the throat, and narrow or block the airway.
  • Sleep apnea: Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder that includes loud snoring as a symptom. Snoring is not the only symptom of sleep apnea. Sleep apnea is also characterized by interrupted breathing during sleep. Breathing can stop for ten seconds or longer as often as 60 times a night.

Treating Snoring with Custom Mouth Guards

In order to properly treat snoring, it is important to determine the cause. However, in many cases, custom mouth guards can alleviate snoring. Custom mouth guards, also known as oral appliances, can keep the airways open and unobstructed to reduce snoring. These oral appliances are custom-crafted, making them comfortable to wear during sleep. There are different types of mouth guards, or oral appliances, available to address the needs of each patient. Some oral appliances treat snoring by preventing the tongue from blocking the airways, while others work by holding the jaw in a position to keep the back of the throat open, also preventing obstruction of the airways.

Schedule a Consultation with Dr. Rink

Snoring can be disruptive to our own quality of sleep, and it can also impact the partner’s sleep. To find out if custom mouth guards can treat your snoring habits, we invite you to schedule a consultation with Dr. Rink.

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