OK, I have a confession to make ... I snore ! Not all the time - in fact not often at all, as far as I know, but I do know that it happens occasionally, especially if I've got a cold or hayfever. However, unfortunately, I'm not the only snorer in the house. Hubby does too, as do the two dogs. There's not a lot I can do about the dogs snoring (canine nasal strips ? - now there's an idea for Dragons' Den !) but I was very enthusiastic when given the chance to try out some snoring remedies. Mike wasn't quite so enthusiastic but I convinced him !
I decided to start off with the scariest looking method before he changed his mind and pulled out the Snore Mate Snoring Relief Mouthpiece. The picture on the back of the box looks like a cross between a rugby player's gum shield and a pair of false teeth ! Not exactly sexy, but then again neither is snoring ! It's no good pulling this one out just before bed because you have to get a custom-fit for it to work. That means you have to put the mouthpiece in boiling water for exactly 12 seconds then mould it around your teeth before plunging it into icy water to set the shape. (If you haven't got at least three teeth, you can't use it, I'm afraid !) The website says it's warm but won't burn you but Mike squealed and said it was really hot ! I'm sure I wasn't helping things by laughing at him but I couldn't help it ! The mouthpiece forces you to breathe through your nose with your mouth closed so if you've got a cold and a blocked up nose, you won't be able to use it. Mike didn't feel at ease going to sleep with something in his mouth and said it felt uncomfortable, though not painful, to force his jaw forward into an unnatural position. The website does say that you need on average four nights to get used to the device but that if it's really not for you, they'll refund your money. As it takes a bit of messing about to get it custom-fitted, felt slightly uncomfortable and needs replacing after a few months, Mike said he wasn't overly keen on this method. OK, on to the next one.
I decided to go for an easier method this time and pulled out a packet of Boots Nasal Strips. I love the fact that there is no messing about, you just peel off the backing and stick one on your nose like a plaster. The nasal passages are slightly opened by the strip which is supposed to eliminate snoring. They're discreet and non-invasive and Mike was happy to wear them and even forgot they were there. I had to remind him to take it off in the morning so he didn't go to work with it still on his nose ! They didn't totally stop the snoring but I think they did reduce the volume by a few decibels ! If you have really greasy skin, they may not stick to your nose properly though.
We also had a free sample of Breathe Right Nasal Strips which worked in the same way and equally as well as the Boots ones but stuck a bit more firmly to the skin - a bit too firmly in fact because Mike said it was like ripping off a plaster on tender skin the next day. He did prefer the slightly thinner shape of these strips though.
Next up was Otrivine Adult Nasal Spray, a decongestant that works within minutes to clear a stuffy nose which may help to reduce snoring. As a bunged up nose is usually my reason for snoring, I gave this one a go and was impressed with the results. It cleared my nose, which is no better than my usual hayfever nasal spray, but the results lasted until the next morning which really impressed me. I don't know if I snored less because Mike was asleep anyway but it helped me get a good's night sleep because I could breathe more easily.
The final product that we had to review was Snore-eze Oral Strips. I wasn't sure how an oral strip would work but I was really impressed. It's a little strip that you put on the roof of your mouth which dissolves within seconds and continues throughout the night, coating your throat with active ingredients that reduce the vibrations that cause snoring. Mike was happy because they were easy to use, non-invasive and tasted lovely and minty ! I loved them because they really worked. Mike tends to snore most when he sleeps on his back and for him, these worked best out of all the products we tried. As each person is different though, you'll need to use trial and error to see what suits you best, depending on your reasons for snoring.
Snore Mate £29.99
Boots Nasal Strips £9.78 for 30
Breathe Right Nasal Strips £6.45 for 10
Otrivine Adult Nasal Spray £2.93 for 10ml
Snore-eze Oral Strips £5.10 for 14
For more information :
www.breatheright.co.uk/Sample.aspx (***free sample available***)
Other reviews you might be interested in :
Vicks Sinex Soother and First Defence Nasal Sprays
Sterimar Isotonic Nasal Hygiene Spray
Baby Nose Clear Aspirator & Room Vapour
Care Allergy Defence - natural hayfever protection