Mandibular Advancement Devices

How Getting MAD (Mandibular Advancement Devices) can Help You Deal with SnoringEnter your text here…

There are many challenges in treating sleep disorders as they’re not the most straightforward conditions out there. This is particularly true for snoring and sleep apnea as the conditions are rather complex. As a result, there are different kinds of treatments available with varying degrees of effectiveness depending on the user.


Mandibular advancement devices or MADs are some of the most popular alternatives to continuous passive airway pressure or CPAP due to its simple design. Unlike CPAP, it doesn’t require electricity or an actual machine to work. It’s also significantly cheaper than CPAP, making it a more attractive option for many.

Also known as anti-snoring mouthpieces or anti-snoring mouthguards, they are also sometimes referred to as snoring mouthguards, snoring mouthpieces, or mandibular repositioning devices. The names can be quite confusing so it’s important to know what exactly they are so you won’t confuse them with other snoring aids or regular mouthguards.

There are several popular picks for MAD today. ZQuiet, AirSnore, VitalSleep, and SnoreRX are some of the most highly recommended options in the market today. They have their own charms and advantages despite all being classified as mandibular advancement devices. It will still be crucial to take a close look at each item, however, as some might work and others might not be the right fit for you.

What are Mandibular Advancement Devices (MAD)?

The name may seem daunting but it’s a very straightforward name in reality. The term ‘mandibular’ refers to the mandible or the lower jaw. So by saying ‘mandibular advancement’ or ‘mandibular repositioning’, it means that the oral appliance is designed to change the position of the mandible or lower jaw.

Advancing the lower jaw provides additional space in the back of the throat so when your soft palate and tongue go lax in sleep, they won’t crowd the air passages which then results in snoring. In order words, by repositioning the mandible, air passages are kept clear and unrestricted allowing ease of movement for the air you inhale and exhale. Since snoring is often caused by limited room for air passage in the throat, MADs address the issue by creating more room.

Since MADs work by altering the position of your lower jaw, it’s meant to be worn in the area. This is why they typically resemble mouthguards used for playing various contact sports. Note, however, that mandibular advancement devices are very different from regular mouthguards so it’s best to use an actual MAD if you’re looking for an effective snoring aid.

The best telltale characteristic of MADs is their metal hinges. They need this adjustment detail to reposition the wearer’s lower jaw as regular mouthpieces won’t be able to do so. Some will let you control the amount of adjustment while others will have a specific measurement that is designed specifically for the dimensions of your mouth.

Experts have found that MADs work best for those with mild to moderate sleep apnea and cases of snoring. Those who often find their snoring to ease up when sleeping on their sides also find these oral appliances to be very beneficial. Females and young people also get positive results from MADs as well as those with receding jaw structures.

On the flip side, older adults don’t always find these items to be useful. Those who are suffering from certain conditions like gum diseases and stiff jaw don’t get the best results from these devices. Those with significant amounts of neck fat and central sleep apnea might also find MADs unsuitable for their condition.

Other Uses of MADs

Another notable thing about MADs is the fact that they’re also useful for teeth grinding. Since most of them are designed to sit under the teeth, they can also create a barrier between your lower and upper sets of teeth as well as your tongue. It will prevent your teeth from getting in contact with each other, preventing damage in the process.

How Do They Work?

As mentioned above, MADs work by repositioning your lower jaw so your air passages will open up when you fall asleep. The idea is very simple, when you put the device on, it will pull your jaw forward which will also pull your tongue forward. This will then prevent your tongue from rolling back to your throat and crowd your air passage. As a result, your airways will be clear and air can move in and out of it more freely.

There are a few different types of MADs and their differences can make or break their usefulness for lots of folks. Get to know them below.

Dental vs. At-Home MADs

To ensure the comfort and effectiveness of your MAD, you will need to make sure that it fits right. To get the perfect fit, you can either get one that is made specifically for you by a dentist or a boil and bite option. The latter are highly preferred by many because of its convenient use and budget-friendly price. The former promises a more precise fit, on the other hand.

Fixed vs. Adjustable MADs

As mentioned above, you can find adjustable and fixed mandibular advancement devices as well. While all of these snoring aids are meant to reposition your jaw and tongue, adjustable ones will give you control over how much you want to move them. Fixed ones will have a defined position for you.

Possible Issues with Mandibular Advancement Devices

Unfortunately, MADs also have a few drawbacks. Due to its design, it’s not really the most comfortable thing to wear, especially to bed. Lots of folks experience great discomfort from it as it will strain certain muscles in your face and mouth to pull your jaw and tongue forward.

Some experienced headaches and toothaches aside from the general discomfort in the jaw and mouth. Excessive drooling and dry mouth can also be a problem with the use of these snoring aids.

Will a Mandibular Advancement Device be a Good Fit for You?

While studies are still needed to further prove the effectiveness of the mechanisms of MADs, in practice, certain products have already helped a lot of snorers manage their condition. It’s not the absolute solution to snoring but it can be everything some folks need to have a silent night of slumber. It’s still a matter of preference and comfort but if you think you can easily get used to wearing one in your sleep, it might just do the trick for you.