Since SomnoGuard is only available by prescription there is not as much information to be found about it online as there is with snoring mouthpieces that can be ordered by anyone. So, finding answers to some of your questions will not be as easy. This guide of common questions and answers should come in handy, whether you are a currently user or thinking about becoming one.
What is SomnoGuard made of?
The tray of SomnoGuard is made of a medical grade thermoplastic material. Biocompatible thermoplastic copolymer is added inside of the trays, which is the material that softens for you to create a custom fit.
How can I tell the difference between the top and bottom trays?
With some devices, such as ZQuiet, you can tell which end up is at a quick glance. The top and bottom trays of SomnoGuard basically look the same before fitting them. It is important that you fit the proper trays to your upper and lower jaws.
The upper tray has the guide bar, or C-bar. This is the track for the screw of the lower tray. The lower tray features a transparent hinge and an adjusting screw.
How is the lower jaw adjusted?
A screw is used to make incremental changes in the lower jaw position. The screw is made of a medical grade stainless steel material. Adjustments need to be done while the trays are disassembled. There is a scale on either side of the thread, so you can easily see the exact amount of adjustment that has been made.
Can SomnoGuard be used by someone with bruxism?
Most mouthpiece manufacturers state that there is no problem wearing the device if you grind your teeth. In fact, the products are usually believed to help protect the teeth. However, it is stated that SomnoGuard has not been designed to wear by individuals with bruxism and the manufacturer recommends seeking a specially fabricated therapeutic alternative.
Are there any side effects associated with wearing SomnoGuard?
The SomnoGuard website says that you could experience mouth dryness, hypersalivation, and TMJ and/or teeth discomfort. It is also noted that it is common for the device to fall out and, it often takes up to two weeks to adapt to the device. However, two weeks is quite a long adjustment period.
How should SomnoGuard be cleaned?
Your snoring device needs to be cleaned after every use using a soft toothbrush and a couple drops of mild dishwashing detergent. You do not want to give bacteria a chance to linger in any of the crevices. Alternately, a liquid denture cleaner can be used. An effervescent denture product is not recommended to use on SomnoGuard. Rinse thoroughly, and allow it to air dry completely before tucking it away in its included storage case.
Can SomnoGuard be trimmed?
Compared to some devices, SomnoGuard is a bit bigger. During the fitting process, excess material can be carefully trimmed. If you are going to do any trimming, this is best done while the material is still warm and soft. Do not throw your cut pieces away. At some point you may need to size your device again or you could find that you need just a bit more material in certain places for a snug fit. Anything you trim away can be saved, washed and heated to use later.
How many times can SomnoGuard be reheated to repeat the fitting process again?
SomnoGuard AP and SP can be refitted up to five times. SomnoGuard 3 can be refitted one to three times and AP Pro can only be fabricated in a dental lab. See my article on the Somnoguard fitting process for details.
Can I breathe through my mouth while I'm wearing SomnoGuard?
Only models with air holes allow you to breathe through your mouth while wearing them. The AP model has the largest hole out of all the models. SP has a very small hole for restricted airflow and SomnoGuard 3 does not have a hole, so you have to breathe through your nose.
If you are like me, you automatically assume that mouthpieces that are only available by prescription are going to be superior to those you order online. After all, there has to be a good reason why they typically cost more and they are harder to get your hands on, right?
Unfortunately, this is not the case. I really had high expectations for SomnoGuard AP 2, but I was really let down.
Pros and Cons
There is no such thing as a mouthpiece that will be perfect for every snorer, and like all MADs, SomnoGuard has its pros and cons.
What is SomnoGuard?
SomnoGuard is a mandibular advancement device that is designed to hold your jaw in a forward position while you sleep. By doing this, your tongue can't collapse into your throat. Therefore, soft tissues are not permitted to get close enough to vibrate. No vibration means no snoring!
SomnoGuard isn't only marketed toward snorers; it also targets those with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). Most oral devices do not make such claims regarding OSA, but since this appliance is only available with a prescription there is no risk of it getting into the wrong hands and used by someone with a more severe case of obstructive sleep apnea or central sleep apnea (CSA).
A Closer Look at SomnoGuard AP 2
This oral appliance is available in a few different styles, so they are supposedly more tailored to every person's mouth, thereby making them more comfortable to wear. So, does it measure up? Is this device as comfortable as it claims? It pains me to say, it did not come close to hitting the mark for me, which I'll explain a little while later.
For review purposes, I went with the SomnoGuard AP 2. I had learned through research that SomnoGuard AP 2 is the most popular option in the line. It is an adjustable, prefabricated mandibular advancement device (MAD) that uses a boil-and-bite fitting process.
SomnoGuard's distinguishing characteristics is its adjustability factor. It allows you to make adjustments up to 10 millimeters, making it ideal for individuals with both an under bite or overbite. A stainless steel screw is used to make incremental changes to advance the lower jaw to the desired position.
Another characteristic that makes SomnoGuard AP 2 unique is that it allows lateral movements. This feature is said to maximize comfort. SomnoGuard AP 2 is made of a clear plastic material and barely noticeable while wearing it.
One of its best qualities is that it has been cleared by the United State Food and Drug Administration. It is also one of the few MADs that has been clinically tested and proven to work. Of course, this does not mean that it will work for you.
SomnoGuard AP has a breathing hole in front, so if you are a mouth breather this device will hold your mouth open slightly all night to ensure that the flow of air can easily travel in and out while you sleep. Another selling point is that it is said to last approximately 18 months. Some users have claimed that their device latest even longer. Even at 18 months this is significantly longer than most MADs on the market.
Unlike my other MAD reviews, my wife did not try SomnoGuard AP 2 with me. We had read on the site that this device is ideal for those medium to large jaws, and therefore recommended more for men. My dentist confirmed this. So, since my wife is just a petit gal, I decided to do this trial alone.
My dentist offered to do the fitting process with me, but since I was already very familiar with the boil-and-bite process and the instructions were self-explanatory, I just took it home to handle myself.
When I took it out-of-the-box, I was immediately surprised by how stiff it was. In the picture, I had seen online the material looked a little softer. I cleaned it and completed the fitting process shortly before bed.
The first thing I noticed was how invasive it was. It looks like a fairly ergonomic and comfortable MAD in the photos, but it felt like it was taking over my mouth. I drooled a lot; much more than I usually do with a new device. I was very glad that we did not buy one for my wife. I just can't imagine how she would have dealt with wearing one.
It took me a while to fall asleep the first night. I usually drift away to dreamland fairly quickly, but that first night I just watched the alarm count, constantly recalculating how much sleep I'd get, if I fell asleep at that very minute (surely you have done this yourself a time, or two).
I felt really uncomfortable. I got up in the middle of the night to let our dog out for a bathroom break, and actually left the device on the kitchen counter when I got a drink of water. My subconscious may have done this purposely. My jaw was already sore. I needed sleep and there was no way I was going to fall asleep a second time with this mouthpiece in.
The first morning, I was really torn. My wife said the few times she woke up, I was pretty silent.
Well, at least until I decided to take it out. So, it was effective at stopping snoring, but I certainly was not looking forward to putting it back in later. Nights two and three were repeats of the first. I could not manage to keep it in through the entire night.
Finally, the fourth night came, and I fell asleep pretty quickly. I honestly don't know if my mouth was getting used to it or if was just so overly tired that nothing was keeping me awake. I also managed to keep the appliance in all night, but talk about my jaw feeling sore in the morning!
This was one of those trials I was really looking forward to finishing. The product was effective, but it was just too bulky to get used it.
Is SomnoGuard Right for You?
Out of all the MADs, I have tried, I found SomnoGuard to be one of the more uncomfortable ones. It is just not nearly as streamlined as many over-the-counter options. If I had a really hard time falling asleep with it in my mouth, I can only imagine how uncomfortable it would be for someone not used to wearing a snoring device.
If you want an effective MAD that is a lot more comfortable, I recommend that you read our list of the best anti-snoring mouthpieces on the market. There are some amazing bargains and advances out there right now!
SomnoGuard is only available in the United States with a prescription written by a dentist or doctor. Many physicians in the country are already offering these devices to patients to treat snoring and obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). 1st Line Medical Supply Company works directly with specific providers in certain states.
Not all states currently have medical professionals carrying this snoring mouthpiece or even familiar with SomnoGuard. If a provider is not currently available in your area, your physician can request more information about enrolling directly from the distributor.
Ordering Information for SomnoGuard
Just because your physician is not currently partnered with SomnoGuard does not mean you have to sit around and wait for them to sign up. You can order a SomnoGuard directly through 1st Line Medical Supply Company. You do still need a prescription from your medical provider though. A copy of a prescription form is available on the company's website. It has to be filled out by your physician. This needs to be faxed to customer service at 800-918-7860. Then, you need to call 866-720-8080 during business hours Monday through Friday to select the model you want and to pay by credit card.
Although not mandatory, it is strongly recommended by 1st Line Medical Supply Company to schedule an appointment with your dentist or physician upon receiving the product, so that they can help you with the fitting process.
If you are ordering the device to treat sleep apnea rather than strictly snoring, you may be eligible for reimbursement through your insurance provider. You will need to be diagnosed with obstructive sleep apnea, if this is the case. Read our SomnoGuard reviews for more information.
See this video for more information on SomnoGuard fitting
Most people who purchased a SomnoGuard are going to have their doctor or dentist handle the fitting process. This is especially true if your provider is already carrying the product and it is available to you immediately.
However, if you are one of many snorers who obtain the prescription and then orders directly from the manufacturer, you might not want to schedule another appointment that you may need to pay for just to have your device fitted.
The fitting process is a little different than what you would do for any other snoring mouthpiece that requires the boil-and-bite technique. However, it is certainly not so difficult that you should worry about handling it yourself.
The fitting process is for the SomnoGuard devices that are two pieces. Since SomnoGuard 3 is one piece the instructions will differ slightly. Be sure to read through the manufacturer's instructions, and when in doubt have your doctor or dentist help you.
This video details the SomnoGuard fitting process
The creator behind SomnoGuard is Dr. Winfried Toussaint, a medical doctor who practiced natural medicine in Bensheim, Germany, for approximately 20 years before he created this snoring mouthpiece.
His device is not listed on our page of the best anti snoring devices. It was actually designed to help him deal with his sleep apnea, which is why today it is often thought of as a device to treat obstructive sleep apnea (OSA).
Tomed Dr. Toussaint GmbH, a medical enterprise, was founded in 1997 to manufacture SomnoGuard. The company's goal was to put a strong focus on sleep apnea. Tomed is headquartered in Germany. The company does not directly distribute to doctors in the United States.
1st Line Medical Supply Company is the distributor of SomnoGuard products in America. The company is located at 81 S. Milwaukee Ave #A, Wheeling, Illinois, 60090. 1st Line Medical Supply Company is not accredited through the Better Business Bureau, but it does have a B- rating on the BBB website. The low rating is due to a product complaint. However, the complaint was addressed and closed.
If you have read my review on SomnoGuard, then you already know that the device I put to the test was the AP version. This is their most popular snoring mouthpiece. However, I thought it would be helpful to include an overview on the other SomnoGuard models, as well. If you are interested in the SomnoGuard AP please check out the review for that particular model.
SomnoGuard AP Pro is a custom-made version of the AP model. It also allows for 10 millimeters of adjustment to tweak lower jaw placement, and it offers very limited lateral lower jaw movement.
It does appear to be a little less bulky than the AP version in pictures, but it features a stainless steel component, so I am not sure how the increased weight would affect comfort. I can't imagine it would help. There are a lot of crevices on this model, so cleaning would be extra effort, as well. Mouth breathing is permitted through the hole right between the upper and lower trays (similar to Zyppah).
I have to admit, looking at SomnoGuard SP makes me cringe a little. It looks even bulkier than the AP option. It comes as a soft and hard version. The soft one doesn't look so uncomfortable, but it is said to have good retention characteristics.
That being said, both the soft and hard versions look like they would be a real pain to clean. I imagine you would have to use a denture cleaner every day to get bacteria out of the many small crevices.
The lower jaw can be adjusted from -3 to +10 millimeters. Both versions are fitted using the boil-and-bite method. No stainless steel is used on these mouthpieces. Although there is an airflow hole it is considerably smaller than what is found in AP and AP Pro.
It is stated that the minimal bite opening is supposed to make it more streamlined to increase comfort, but if you are a mouth breather then this amount of air probably will not be suitable all night.
Unlike the other versions that were two pieces, SomnoGuard 3 has a one-part design. The design, which is also fitted using the boil-and-bite technique, is said to have improved retention. However, it does not allow for lower jaw adjustments and it does not have any breathing holes, so you have to breathe through your nose. Also, the average lifespan is about 12 months. It looks as though this upgrade lost all of its distinguishing characteristics.
My Somnoguard Coupon will not necessarily apply to all models, so please let me know if it is not working upon purchase.
SomnoGuard will occasionally provide discount promo codes for its SomnoGuard AP and other models. If there is a discount coupon available, we will provide it here.
We do our best to reach out to snoring mouthpiece companies and provide our readers special deals.
If you come across a SomnoGuard coupon code, please send us an email so that we can update this page for other readers. Discount promo codes come in either a dollar amount or percentage amount.