Snoring can be an embarrassing condition, especially when you share a room with someone – worse if this person is someone you like! Snoring could also disrupt a good sleep and cause you to be tired and fatigued when you come awake the next day. It could also lead to major health problems. Have you ever deferred sharing a room with your crush because you didn’t want them to know you snored so hard? Or have you had people complain about staying up at night because of you?
If that’s you, then you’ve come to the right page.
There are lots of measures you could take to stop or at least reduce snoring as long as it isn’t sleep apnea, a more serious condition. Drastic measures and expensive medications are not necessary in handling your snoring problem. Sometimes taking pills are unsafe, because many of these pills sold for this problem have no substantial scientific studies to back them up. So you must see a doctor before ingesting those drugs. Going for natural remedies are however the safest and cheapest option.
What Causes You To Snore?
You snore when air movement through the nose and throat is difficult in your sleep, as a result of too much tissue, the tongue positioning or some other issue. The difficulty causes the tissues of the nose and throat to vibrate and produce what we know as the snoring sound.
• Age: While you keep growing, you get to a point where the throat narrows and muscle tone reduces.
• Sinus or Sinus issues : snoring could happen when the airways or nose is blocked, leading to a difficulty in breathing, especially when you have a cold.
• Sleeping Posture : the position you take while sleeping could block the airways leading to snoring- like laying flat on your back.
• Being overweight : excess weight especially around the neck could lead to snoring.
• Smoking, medications, alcohol : These could cause increased muscle relaxation, making inhalation difficult and leading to snoring.
• Body structure : men generally posses narrower air passages and are more likely to snore. Other structures that could contribute to snoring include large adenoids, narrow throat, cleft palate etc.
Ways To Stop Snoring
1. Lose Some Weight
We have seen that being overweight, and having so much flesh especially around the neck could cause snoring. The extra fatty tissues could cause the throat’s internal diameter to shrink and make it difficult for air to flow in easily. Being committed to shedding some weight would reduce how much tissue is in your throat and hence put at end or at least decrease your snoring. Although it is true that thin people also snore, if prior to your weight gain you didn’t snore, then you should lose weight. Even if you have been thin and still snored or you haven’t been thin before, there’s no harm in losing some weight. To do this, show diligence in exercising daily and eating healthy. Talking to your nutritionist or doctor could be an option while planning to lose some weight.
2. Avoid Alcohol Before Bed
Consumption of alcohol before bed could cause the throat muscles to become relaxed and weaken the resting muscle tone located at the back of the throat and this could lead to snoring. If you’re going to have alcohol, do so at noon not a few hours to bedtime. Even if you usually would not snore, you most likely will if you take alcohol before bed. It is true that alcohol could induce sleep, but it is a bad idea to take it to sleep as you’ll end up getting a very poor sleep quality. If you already snore, then it also is a terrible idea to drink alcohol as your snoring will get worse.
3. Change Your Position
Your sleeping position also affects snoring. That’s why you’ll often notice that a snoring sibling stops after you make them change sleeping positions. Lying with your back flat on the bed is one of such positions that induce snoring. It causes the base of the tongue and palate to collapse all the way to the back of the throat, making the airway vibrate noisily with air passage. It’s best to sleep on your side, this will cause your airways to stay open and without obstruction. To keep you from rolling to a position that would cause snoring, place pillows behind you or place something uncomfortable in the back of your PJs so you can’t sleep on your back.
4. Stay Hydrated
Studies show that with dehydration, a thick mucus is created in the throat which sticks together and prevents proper air passage- this could cause snoring. You can avoid this by drinking water often. 2.5 litres and 2 litres of water everyday for men and women respectively is advised. They could be drunk or eaten through foods with high water content like fruits and vegetables.
5. Avoid Eating Right Before Bed
Eating right before bed would make your stomach full, this pushes up against the diaphragm and has a negative effect on your breathing. It is worse if the food consumed is spicy or contains a lot of fat as it could result in indigestion and other problems which could cause snoring. Consuming dairy products like milk also are not advised, they usually leave a mucosal layer in the throat and the mouth blocking air passage. Long and short, generally avoid eating before bed. It’s best to have dinner three to four hours before your bedtime.
In summary, try to lose some weight, avoid alcohol right before bed, take a hot shower to unclog nasal passages, sleep on your side. These habits have the potential to stop or at least reduce snoring.
If at the end of the day, you try every natural remedy for snoring and none seems to bring much positive result, then you should see a doctor as your snoring could be a sign that something more serious is wrong with your health. You will most likely be diagnosed with sleep apnea or be referred to a sleep clinic where you will be further tested.