Custom vs. Temporary Oral Devices for Snoring and Sleep Apnea

Having sleep apnea or snoring interrupts one’s ability to sleep well. Additionally, untreated sleep apnea or snoring causes several pulmonary and cardiac health problems because you aren’t getting sufficient quality sleep. More often than not, your pulmonologist will prescribe a CPAP or BiPAP machine for you to wear at night. Spark Sleep Solutions offers a better oral sleep appliance in Santa Cruz.

Temporary Oral Devices: Pros and Cons

Temporary oral devices are only meant to be used for a short time until something more permanent or custom comes along. These devices help pull the bottom jaw forward to prevent the tongue from slipping backward while you sleep.


Low cost (depending on the patient’s medical health benefits for a custom oral device for sleep apnea).


They are often cheaply made leading to early breakage (usually within 1-3 months based on our experience) and lack of retention on the teeth. The issue our office hears about the most is these homemade devices don’t stay on the teeth during sleep and fall off. Additionally, with fewer options and no doctor oversight, they have a lower success rate, and a higher risk of TMJ problems, bite changes, and shifting of your teeth. We often see they are not suitable for patients who also grind their teeth during sleep (bruxism). 

Custom Oral Devices: Pros and Cons

A custom oral device is often a smarter option. It offers more benefits than a temporary device.


Custom oral devices fit your mouth perfectly with no need to refit them at any time. They are much less cumbersome and easier to wear than the temporary ones. The three-year warranty on a custom oral device that our office provides gives our patients peace of mind in the rare event of device damage or manufacturer defects.

  • With over 100 custom oral device options we can usually find one suitable for a patient’s specific needs.
  • Precision in manufacturing and mandible/jaw advancement (often down to 0.1mm).
  • Customizable after they are made. 
  • Allow you to open/close your mouth while using.
  • Longevity: Usual duration of at least 5 years with a 3 year warranty.
  • Can be adjusted for most dental changes (e.g. fillings and crowns). 
  • Less side effects than temporary (OTC) snoring appliances. 
  • More comfortable.
  • Higher success rate at treating snoring and sleep apnea.
  • FDA and Medicare PDAC approved.
  • Treatment is managed by a doctor.


May have a higher cost depending on your health plan. As they are custom made and meet federal regulations in function, quality and precision they do cost more to manufacture. 

Finding Oral Devices for Sleep Apnea in Santa Cruz

Temporary oral devices for sleep apnea in Santa Cruz may be found just about anywhere where oral healthcare products are sold. However, custom oral sleep appliances in Santa Cruz can only be found through Spark Sleep Solutions. The rare dentist may also be able to make such an appliance, but considering that it still has to be made in a lab offsite, it’s just better to have Spark Sleep Solutions make it for you.

Why It’s Easier to Wear an Oral Appliance Than a CPAP Mask

People who are worried about putting something in their mouth and going to sleep should reconsider. A custom device fits your teeth perfectly such that it isn’t going to go anywhere. Compare that to the CPAP or BiPAP mask, which can shift around your face at night every time you roll over. 

It’s also problematic when waking up to find that you pulled the mask off at some time in the night. A CPAP or BiPAP mask also has a long bit of tubing that constantly gets in the way and can wrap around your head and neck during the night. A well-fitted custom oral device does away with all that and helps you sleep easier. 

Contact Spark Sleep Solutions for an appointment today!