We Tried 3 Popular Anti-Snoring Devices

After years of sleeping next to a snoring partner, can ending noisy nights be as simple as clicking “Buy Now” on Amazon?

Share on Pinterest
Our volunteer guinea pig tried all three devices at once – not recommended if you want to be able to breathe. Photo via Jase Peeples

We have all seen these devices. You know, those Instagram infomercials and ads that are sort of “clinically proven” to be a miracle cure for snoring.

I used to roll my eyes every time I came across an advertisement for one of these contraptions. But then I started living with someone who snored.

I can’t count the number of times I’ve been jolted awake in our San Francisco home thinking “the big one” has just hit California, only to realize that the rumble that jolted me from my dream was just my husband, John, who snored less within a foot.

Suddenly, those commercials for over-the-counter anti-snoring gadgets started looking pretty promising.

So, after a particularly noisy night, we recently looked at some of the best options on Amazon and decided to try out three different devices.

Anti-snoring chin strap

The first device we ordered made both of us laugh when it arrived. John tried it on the second we opened the package, and yes, the anti-snoring chin strap looks as ridiculous as you think.

It is a simple neoprene strap that fits under the chin, wraps around the sides of the head and secures with adjustable Velcro straps at the back.

The purpose of the strap is to keep the wearer’s mouth closed while sleeping to prevent open mouth snoring from occurring throughout the night.

2 in 1: Anti Snoring & Air Purifier

Share on Pinterest
It promises not only to stop snoring but also to purify the air. Photo via Jase Peeples

Made of medical-grade plastic and silicone, this anti-snoring gadget comes in a reusable case and is meant to fit snugly in the nostrils of the wearer.

The packaging claims that “the front snore reduction vents have been scientifically designed to maximize airflow through the nasal passages” and the silicone tips that are inserted into the wearer’s nose “fit comfortably to different sizes of nasal passages”.

Right out of the box, the 2-in-1: Anti Snoring & Air Purifier gave off what John described as a “gross plastic chemical smell” when he held it to his nose. In fact, it was so strong that he couldn’t try it until we washed it thoroughly with soap and warm water twice to reduce the harsh smell.

Breathe Right Nasal Strips

These clear plastic adhesive strips are worn over the bridge of the nose and have “spring-like” bands that lift the nasal passages, supposedly opening them wider to improve airflow.

Each strip is individually wrapped and has a detachable backing (similar to bandages) for easy application to the nose.

However, since these disposable strips are only good for one use each, there is quite a bit of unnecessary waste associated with this product.

Anti-snoring chin strap

Although the Anti-Snoring Chin Strap is advertised on its packaging as being made from a ‘breathable’ and ‘comfortable’ material, John found the device made his head feel ‘a bit too warm’ in places that it covered about 15 minutes after you put it on.

He described it as “not the worst thing, but definitely not comfortable either”.

Shortly after John fell asleep that night, he started snoring. However, I quickly noticed that the sound of his snores was different. It came in stops and stops, a jerky noise that was not at all like his normal snore.

In fact, it looked like he was having more trouble breathing.

Worried, I woke him up and had him removed. Not only did the anti-snore chin strap fail to stop John’s snoring, it was now preventing me from sleeping with fears it would interfere with his breathing while he slept.

2 in 1: Anti Snoring & Air Purifier

The instructions that came with the next device we tested claimed it would keep the wearer’s airway open to “improve nasal breathing and reduce snoring.”

However, aside from being Instagram gold (John looked like he was wearing scuba diving gear straight out of a sci-fi movie when he shoved this thing up his nose), the 2 in 1 device was completely useless.

In fact, John said he had a harder time exhaling through his nose with the device, which made it harder for him to fall asleep.

Once he fell asleep, the device kept falling off as it spun throughout the night. The two ribbed silicone tubes that gently hug the wearer’s nasal septum don’t exert enough pressure to hold the device in place as they toss and turn throughout the night.

It didn’t improve his breathing or reduce his snoring.

Breathe Right Nasal Strips

Share on Pinterest
The most famous anti-snoring device seemed to help. Photo via Jase Peeples

The final treatment we tried was also the one we were most skeptical about: Breathe Right nasal strips.

Although they didn’t “stop” John’s snoring, I was pleasantly surprised to see (and hear) that they seemed to reduce the severity slightly.

John snored a little more quietly and he felt he could breathe more easily through his nose when he was wearing the strips.

I was happy we found something that seemed to make a small difference, but I wanted to know more.

Why did the nasal strips seem to affect John’s snoring when the other devices were broken? And why didn’t any of these devices turn out to be the “snoring solution” their shiny packaging claimed to be?

Why do we snore anyway?

Dr. Brandon Peters-Mathews, a board-certified neurology and sleep medicine physician who currently practices at Virginia Mason Medical Center in Seattle, explained that snoring occurs due to tissue vibration in the throat when muscles in the airways relax during sleep.

“Most often this is due to turbulent airflow affecting the soft palate, uvula, or base of the tongue,” Peters-Mathews said.

“Difficulty breathing through the nose can predispose to mouth breathing and snoring. If the mouth opens at night, the lower jaw and tongue may move backwards, affecting airflow in the mouth. throat,” he added.

So, could snoring be dangerous?

“If snoring occurs rarely without other associated symptoms, it may not be problematic on its own,” Peters-Mathews said. “However, it is often a sign of underlying breathing problems during sleep. It can be a warning sign of associated sleep apnea (a potentially serious sleep disorder in which breathing stops and then starts to many times).

When I told him about our experience with the various devices we tried, Peters-Mathews said he wasn’t surprised by the results.

“Both external and internal nasal dilators can increase airflow through the nose and reduce snoring,” he said. “Unfortunately, these would not be expected to adequately resolve the associated sleep apnea.”

He also advised against using a chinstrap to treat snoring. He pointed out that although a chinstrap can stabilize the jaw in a forward position, mouth breathing might become necessary if there is a nasal obstruction or if the person has difficulty breathing through their nose.

This seemed to explain why the sound of John’s snoring changed when he tried the jugular. He may have been struggling to get enough air through his nose and had trouble breathing. I was doubly grateful to have him remove the device when I did.

Instead of turning to over-the-counter devices, Peters-Mathews advises that all chronic snorers be evaluated by a sleep physician.

He said “even mild or intermittent snoring can be a problem when combined with other symptoms” such as:

  • gasp at night
  • non-restorative sleep
  • frequent awakenings
  • pee more than once at night
  • gnashing of teeth
  • night sweats
  • morning headache
  • daytime sleepiness
  • memory problems
  • depression
  • high blood pressure
  • Diabetes
  • atrial fibrillation

“These findings may be suggestive of sleep apnea. It’s best to err on the side of caution and get it checked out,” Peters-Mathews said. “Treatment options may include continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) therapy. , an oral appliance from a dental specialist, or even surgery.Fortunately, effective therapy can resolve snoring and improve sleep.

Basically, no. None of the devices worked well enough to be used regularly.

Since our experience, John has undergone a sleep study, but the doctors have not identified a clear cause for his snoring.

At the moment, we are still looking for a snoring “solution”, but I don’t think we will rely on Amazon this time around.