How to Reduce Snoring For a Better Night's Sleep
Snoring can put a damper on sleep. It can become impossible to sleep or stay asleep with the rhythmic snoring sound every night. Snoring is a common issue in America. About 90 million people have reported snoring. Of these, 35 million regularly snore.
One of the common reasons behind snoring is blockage or restriction on the upper portion of the breathing tubes. The underlying causes vary from heredity and pregnancy to airway congestion. However, the stigma surrounding snoring keeps people from seeking help or getting the right solution because of understating their symptoms. Furthermore, most people are unaware that they snore.
Thus, the first step toward managing or treating the snoring-related issue is destigmatization through enlightenment. People need to know that snoring is a condition like any other and is treatable or manageable. Sometimes the reason behind the snore is beyond a person's control.
Why Do People Snore?
Contrary to popular belief, body weight hardly contributes to snoring. The primary cause of snoring is restriction or blockage in the airways. You are more likely to snore if:
- You genetically inherited a large tongue, small nostrils, and low soft palate and uvula.
- One or both of your parents snore.
- You have obstructive sleep apnea - it causes your airways to collapse or block, interfering with your breathing for at least 10 minutes.
Obstructive sleep apnea can cause depression, diabetes, high blood pressure, and other cardiovascular ailments without treatment. Sleep disruption from snoring can also affect your mental and physical health. It can affect your relationship with your partner, who has to forebear the snores.
Tips to Prevent or Reduce Snoring
Light snoring is okay. It may not even disrupt your partner. However, mild snoring, also known as primary snoring, affects your health and interrupts sleep for your partner.
You can reduce mild snoring by:
Changing Your Sleeping Position
Lie on your side with a pillow between your knees or under your upper arms. The sleeping posture realigns your spine and airways, enabling you to breathe better during sleep.
Dealing with Underlying Issues
Find treatment for any seasonal allergies that cause airway congestion interfering with your breathing. You can also find a solution for anatomical-related obstructions. Another habit that contributes to snoring is breathing with your mouth while sleeping. It dries and constricts your airways. Use strips to keep the airway link to your nose open to reduce breathing through your mouth.
Staying Away from Alcohol
Avoid drinking alcohol three hours before bedtime. Only drink the recommended amount every time you indulge in alcoholic drinks. Alcohol causes obstructive sleep apnea by relaxing your throat muscles, making you snore. It also reduces your incentive to breathe, causing you to take shallow breaths, increasing your snoring likelihood.
Scheduling a Dentist Appointment
Visit a dentist with sleep medicine training. They have a device that looks like a mouth guard, which moves your tongue and jaw forward, opening the airways while you sleep. The open trachea improves your breathing while you sleep.
Visiting a Doctor
Consult your doctor if you are still snoring despite trying all available solutions. The physician will examine your airways to identify the underlying condition. You can use a snore-tracking device to ascertain the efficacy of the tips if you sleep alone. Monitor if you snore on days when you are tired to find a cause and relation.