Snoring is not only a nuisance, but also increases your risk of heart disease. You may be one of the 45% of adults who snore, or, sleep with someone who does. For the “quieter partner” this is probably deeply disturbing their sleep and aggravating may create the need for separate bedrooms . For you, the “snorer”, it could be obstructive sleep apnea – a condition where breathing is disrupted during sleep for short periods. Snoring could be no laughing matter, it may increase the risk of heart disease!
As with all our articles, we strongly advise you to consult with your personal health care provider to evaluate your individual case. For those who snore, there are several “natural” suggestions to try and see if this may solve your snoring issues.
Thanks to WebMD, we’ve listed 7 natural snoring solutions which may help:
- Change Your Sleep Position. Lying on your back makes the base of your tongue and soft palate collapse to the back wall of your throat, causing a vibrating sound during sleep. Sleeping on your side may help prevent this. A body pillow (a full-length pillow that supports your entire body) provides an easy fix and it enables you to maintain sleeping on your side and can make a dramatic difference. Taping tennis balls to the back of your pajamas can also stop you from sleeping on your back, or, you can recline the bed with the head up and extended, which opens up nasal airway passages and may help prevent snoring. This may cause neck pain, however. If snoring continues regardless of the sleep position, obstructive sleep apnea may be a cause. Please see your health care professional.
- Lose Weight. Weight loss helps some people but not everyone. Hey, thin people snore too! If you’ve gained weight and started snoring and did not snore before you gained weight, weight loss may help. Gaining weight around your neck squeezes the internal diameter of the throat, making it more likely to collapse during sleep, triggering snoring.
- Avoid Alcohol. Alcohol and sedatives reduce the resting tone of the muscles in the back of your throat, making it more likely you’ll snore. Try not to drink alcohol 4-5 hours before sleeping.
- Practice Good Sleep Hygiene. Poor sleep habits (also known as poor sleep “hygiene”) can have an effect similar to that of drinking alcohol. Working long hours without enough sleep, for example, means when you finally hit the sack you’re overtired. You sleep hard and deep and the muscles become floppier, which can create snoring.
- Open Nasal Passages. If snoring starts in your nose, keeping nasal passages open may help. It allows air to move through slower. If your nose is clogged or narrowed due to a cold or other blockage, the fast-moving air is more likely to produce snoring. A hot shower before you go to bed can help open nasal passages. Also, keep a bottle of saltwater rinse in the shower and rinse your nose out with it while you’re showering to help open up passages. A neti pot could also be used to rinse out the nasal passages with a salt-water solution. Read more about Neti Pots: http://www.webmd.com/allergies/sinus-pain-pressure-11/neti-pots
- Nasal strips may also work to lift nasal passages and open them up – if the problem exists in your nose and not within the soft palate.
- Change Your Pillows. Allergens in your bedroom and in your pillow may contribute to snoring. When did you last dust the overhead ceiling fan? Replace your pillows? Dust mites accumulate in pillows and can cause allergic reactions that can lead to snoring. Allowing pets to sleep on the bed causes you to breathe in animal dander, another common irritant. If you feel fine during the day but obstructed at night, these things may be contributing to your snoring. Put your pillows in the air fluff cycle once every couple weeks and replace them every six months to keep dust mites and allergens to a minimum. And keep pets out of the bedroom. Beware before spending money on special pillows designed to prevent snoring, they may work if it props up your head, which fixes nasal issues, but can cause neck pain.
- Stay Well Hydrated. Drink plenty of fluids. Secretions in your nose and soft palate become stickier when you’re dehydrated and this can create more snoring. According to the Institute of Medicine, healthy women should have about 11 cups of total water (from all drinks and food) a day; men require about 16 cups.
Read more about Neti Pots http://www.webmd.com/allergies/sinus-pain-pressure-11/neti-pots
Article courtesy of WebMD, Louise Chang, MD, Sleep Disorders Health Center
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