Many of us snore; some of us do it regularly, while others are occasional snorers, due to illness or sinus issues.
So, why do people snore? Our neck muscles relax when we are asleep, causing the upper airway to become too narrow. Air rattles against tissues in the nose and throat as it struggles to enter the lung, resulting in a snoring sound. Snoring can seriously affect your own quality sleep and those sleeping near you. Plus, it could be a sign of a more serious health condition.
However, the good news is there are a couple of medical and natural remedies that can help stop snoring.
The fatty tissue around the neck and throat is one of the most common culprits of narrowing or blocking of the airways during sleep. People who are overweight may carry extra fat around their neck, which is more likely to obstruct their throat and cause snoring.
They are also likely to have poor muscle tone in their neck and throat, causing the tissue around these areas to relax onto each other and block airways. In that case, losing weight through regular exercise and a healthy diet can help reduce these fatty tissues that could be causing your snoring.
Sleep On Your Side
You are more likely to snore when you sleep on your back. That is because it allows the base of your tongue and soft palate to fall back into your throat, thereby narrowing or blocking your airways. However, sleeping on your side allows air to flow easily, which reduces the vibrations in your nose and throat that you make while you sleep.
If you find yourself ending up on your back during sleep, consider getting a body pillow to help you maintain the side sleeping position. This will allow you to train yourself to sleep on your side so that you are less likely to make noise when you breathe while you sleep.
Evaluate Your Lifestyle
Some lifestyle choices can have an affect on your sleeping patterns and in turn cause you to snore regularly. For instance, alcohol consumption and certain medications can relax your throat muscles, making them more likely to vibrate.
Also, smoking can irritate your throat and airways, which can make snoring worse. This is why many doctors tell you to limit or avoid using these items before bed. You should also watch what you eat and make any dietary changes if necessary. Dairy products, in particular, can leave behind a layer of mucus that can block your airways while you sleep.
You should also avoid heavy meals before bed as they can disrupt your sleep and worsen your snoring. So if you think that some of your lifestyle factors may be causing you to snore more frequently, you should try making some positive changes immediately.
Try Some Different Devices
If you are regularly having trouble with snoring, you might want to try using some different devices to help you while you sleep. One of the first things that many doctors recommend for people who snore is a mouthguard, so that you can keep your airways open while you sleep, without any obstructions.
Mouthguards used for sleeping are designed to prevent your tongue from falling into the back of your throat while you sleep, thus allowing you to breathe properly without any noise.
Other common devices that are recommended for people who have trouble with snoring include nasal dilators or strips, that are designed to keep the nose open to reduce airflow resistance. This is why people make noise when they snore, so if you use one of these nasal devices, you will find that it is not as noisy when you sleep.
Buy A CPAP Machine
Lifestyle changes and anti-snoring devices may not be enough to stop snoring, especially if it is due to a serious condition like sleep apnea. If that is the case, it may be time for medical intervention. CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) therapy is one of the most effective treatments for obstructive sleep apnea.
A CPAP machine like those available from CPAP Direct is a device that blows pressurised air into your airways to keep them open during sleep and prevent snoring and OSA. The device is connected to a mask that goes over your face while you sleep, so that it does not fall off when you are unconscious and your airways are open correctly all night long.
Get Surgery on the Affected Area
Sometimes, snoring is due to nasal polyps, deviated septum, or other nasal deformities. Several anti-snoring surgical procedures can be done to address specific areas of the airway that are blocked and causing you to snore.
One of the main surgeries performed by doctors to eliminate issues with snoring is Uvulopalatopharyngoplasty (UPPP), which tightens and trims excess throat tissues to increase the airway size and minimise tissue collapse.
Other surgeries include Somnoplasty, which uses radiofrequency energy to stiffen the tissues of the soft palate and uvula so they do not vibrate or a Tonsillectomy. Depending on where your problem area is when you sleep, your doctor may want to do one or more of these surgeries on you to stop the problem from recurring.
The list of things you can do to stop snoring is endless. That being said, make sure you have exhausted all the natural remedies and easy fixes before you can opt for more serious and costly solutions like a CPAP machine or surgery.
Stopping yourself from snore may sound easy to do, but it can actually be a lot harder than it sounds, so it is important to try whatever you can for as long as you can before you move onto trying something else.