Mouthpieces like mandibular advancement devices and tongue stabilizing devices are some of the best snoring solutions. They’re relatively cheap, portable, and effective, so they’re a great option for many snorers. However, it’s important to take good care of them to help them last longer and work better.
Knowing how to clean a mouth guard is essential for keeping it in good condition. It only takes a few minutes to wash a snoring mouthpiece, so it should be part of your morning or nighttime routine. There are a variety of cleaning methods and products you can use, but this guide will help you figure out the best way to wash your mouthpiece.
Importance of Mouth Guard Hygiene
Your mouth is home to almost 1,000 strains of bacteria. Snoring mouthpieces make direct contact with your teeth and tongue all night, so that bacteria can easily transfer onto the device. When germs build up on the mouthpiece, it will start to smell and may not function properly Improper hygiene can shorten your mouthpiece’s lifespan.
Keeping your mouth guard clean will also prevent harmful bacteria, viruses, and other microorganisms from invading your mouth. Once germs enter your mouth, they have an easy pathway to your digestive system, your bloodstream, and the rest of your body. Keeping a dirty snoring device in your mouth all night can make you sick.
Cleaning your mouthpiece is essential for protecting your teeth and gums, too. It’s especially important if you use a mandibular advancement device, which makes contact with most of the surface of your teeth. Prolonged exposure to germs and bacteria can wear down your teeth and gums, making them more sensitive and more vulnerable to damage.
How to Properly Store Your Mouth Guard
Almost all anti-snoring mouth guards come with a case. The best place to store your device is in its original container, which was designed to match its shape and size. You should take as much care to clean the case as you do to clean the mouthpiece itself, especially if you put the mouthpiece in the case before washing it. In most cases, you can use the same cleaning products and techniques to wash the case as you use for the mouthpiece.
Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for storing your mouthpieces. Most anti-snoring devices should be completely dry before being put away, but some should be stored in water to prevent bacteria from growing. If you can’t find any information in the instructions, try to contact the manufacturer by phone or email.
Your mouthpiece should also stay stored where kids or pets won’t find it. Young children and pets are notorious for breaking into things for fun, and they may damage or lose your mouthpiece if they find it. Even if your mouthpiece survives an encounter with a curious child or puppy, it probably was exposed to lots of germs and bacteria.
Popular Cleaning Techniques
There are a wide variety of effective cleaning techniques for mouth guards and other snoring devices. Some are better than others for certain products, so you should always look for the manufacturer’s instructions first. Here are some of the most popular cleaning methods:
Dos and Don’ts
Do: Follow the manufacturer’s instructions. Most brands provide information about cleaning their mouthpieces either on their website or on the instructions that come with the device. They should be your first source.
Do: Wash your hands before and after. Washing your hands before handling your mouthpiece will prevent extra bacteria from getting on the device. You should also wash your hands after cleaning your mouth guard to remove dirt or germs that may have transferred onto your skin.
Do: Use a soft brush. If you plan to clean your mouth guard with a toothbrush, buy a soft-bristled one. You don’t need anything too abrasive to clean the mouthpiece, and soft-bristled brushes won’t wear down the plastic.
Do: Practice good oral hygiene. Bacteria in your mouth can transfer to the mouthpiece and make it dirty very quickly. A clean mouth and a clean mouthpiece is a much better combination. Always brush your teeth thoroughly before using your snoring mouth guard.
Do: Replace the mouth guard when needed. Some anti-snoring devices have longer lifespans than others, but all of them will need to be replaced eventually. You can probably find information about replacing your mouth guard in your instructions or on the manufacturer’s website. Even if you clean the mouthpiece every day, it will eventually become too dirty, old, or worn out to use.
Don’t: Use toothpaste unless the manufacturer has approved it. Toothpaste is a great way to clean some mouthpieces, but it can be harmful to others. If the manufacturer doesn’t mention using toothpaste in their instructions, choose a different cleaning method.
Don’t: Use boiling water. While hot water can wash away bacteria, it can also damage a mouth guard. Most snoring mouthpieces are made of plastic, and boiling water can distort them. A distorted mouthpiece can be uncomfortable, ineffective, and damaging to your teeth and gums.
Don’t: Use bleach. Bleach is a powerful cleaning agent, but it may break down the materials in your mouth guard and cause damage. It’s also risky to use bleach on a device that stays in your mouth for hours. Smelling or tasting bleach can make it difficult to fall asleep. You should also avoid rubbing alcohol or other harsh chemicals unless they’re recommended by the manufacturer.
How to Clean Your Mouthpiece
Different types and brands of snoring mouth guards have different cleaning needs. Many of the major brands have provided instructions for how to keep their devices clean. Here are instructions for cleaning some of the most popular mouthpieces:
How to Clean Good Morning Snore Solution
You should always disinfect your Good Morning Snore Solution mouthpiece before using it. The manufacturers recommend that you soak it for 10 minutes in a glass of water mixed with toothpaste or denture tablets. Then, swish the mouthpiece around in the water and let it air dry. Practicing good oral hygiene will also keep the device clean. Bacteria from your teeth and tongue can transfer onto the mouthpiece, so brush and floss thoroughly before using it.
How to Clean VitalSleep Mouthpiece
VitalSleep sells an antibacterial cleaner for their mouthpieces for about $16. The cleaner should last for about 45 days and should kill 99 percent of all bacteria, viruses, and fungus on the mouthpiece. To use the cleaner, you should dip the mouthpiece in water, apply the cleaner with a toothbrush, and rinse it thoroughly with cold water. VitalSleep says that the cleaner should do its job in just 60 seconds.
How to Clean SnoreMeds Mouthpiece
SnoreMeds recommends a few different options for cleaning their mouthpiece. The mouthpiece comes with a spatula, so you can handle it without directly touching it. You can use a toothbrush and toothpaste to wash the mouthpiece, or you can rinse it with mouthwash. Another option is to place it in a clean container filled with water and add a denture cleaning tablet.
How to Clean AirSnore Mouthpiece
AirSnore recommends that you clean the mouthpiece each time you use it. You can soak the mouthpiece in cold water mixed with toothpaste for 10 to 15 minutes, or you can wash it with a denture cleaning solution. Let it air dry completely before using it, and keep it in a clean case to protect it from dirt and bacteria.
How to Clean ZQuiet Mouthpiece
The ZQuiet manufacturers recommend soaking the mouthpiece in warm water mixed with a mild dish soap. You can use a toothbrush or your clean fingers to gently scrub the mouthpiece, but you shouldn’t use toothpaste as it can cause discoloration. Make sure you rinse the mouthpiece thoroughly to remove all the soap and let it air dry completely before you store it or use it.
How to Clean SnoreRx Device
You should wash your SnoreRx device every day with a toothbrush and toothpaste. The manufacturers recommend using an ultrasonic cleaner to be as thorough as possible. You should also let the device air dry to prevent bacteria from building up. Once every week or two, you should wash the mouthpiece with denture solution to kill touch bacteria or viruses. The manufacturers state that you should avoid any abrasive cleaners like mouthwash, bleach, and dish soap.
How to Clean Zyppah
On their website, Zyppah sells a sanitizer for their mouthwash for about $18. The cleaner is antibacterial, antiviral, and anti-fungal, and the manufacturers state that it kills 99.9 percent of germs in just one minute. The bottle should last about a month. If you don’t want to buy the cleaner, you can wash the mouthpiece with a toothbrush and mouthwash. Once a week, you should dissolve a denture cleaning tablet in water and let your mouthpiece soak for 10 minutes for a deep cleaning.
Your Snoring Mouthpiece Isn’t on the List?
If your mouthpiece isn’t on this list, your best option is probably to use one of the recommended methods like a toothbrush, denture cleaning tablets, or an ultrasonic cleaner. Some cleaning products can be harmful to mouthpieces, though, so you should consider contacting the manufacturer. Check their website for an FAQ or a tutorial that may include cleaning information.
If you can’t find anything, look for their contact information and give them a call or send an email. You can also look online for reviews of the mouthpiece to see if anyone has given their own cleaning recommendation.