Snoring Problems Are a Big Deal
40% of adult men and 24% of adult women in the United States suffer from snoring. While snoring for some can be a minor nuisance, for others, snoring can be a serious problem.
Snoring can disrupt the snorer's and his or her partner's sleep cycle, which can lead to fatigue throughout the day. It can also be a sign of deeper health issues or breathing problems.
Fortunately, many snorers can find relief by exercising any one of a few simple remedies.
Below, our team has compiled a list of seven simple snoring prevention methods that we recommend you or a loved one who’s dealing with snoring give a try!
- Experiment with Different Sleeping Positions
Most people sleep on their back without problems. For some, though, the collapsing of their tongue and soft palate towards the back of their throat causes vibrations when inhaling and exhaling.
This results in snoring sounds.
To prevent that vibration, and consequently be successful at snoring prevention, we recommend trying to sleep on your side. Body pillows can be helpful at keeping you propped up while side sleeping if it's a naturally uncomfortable position for you.
If you encounter pain when changing your sleeping position, particularly in your neck, switch back to a comfortable position and talk to your doctor.
- Keep a Healthy Sleep Schedule
Have you ever watched a cartoon or a movie where one of the characters was so exhausted that he or she collapsed into a deep sleep and began to snore loudly? That depiction may not be as dramatic or as inaccurate as you may think.
When your body is overtired, your muscles become more relaxed during sleep. That limpness can lead to vibrations when breathing, which can cause snoring.
Do your best to get to sleep at a reasonable hour and dedicate appropriate time to sleep to prevent over-exhaustion from contributing to snoring. Most people need eight hours of sleep per night, whereas some individuals need less or even more! If you are the snorer or it’s your partner, try changing the number of hours of sleep per night.
- Watch Your Weight
Weight and snoring are well documented in their connection. Heavy people carry more fatty tissues around their neck area, which can squeeze the diameter of one's throat. That constriction puts people at a higher risk of snoring.
That's not to say, of course, that thin people are not prone to snoring.
Ultimately, if you gained weight and have begun snoring and hadn't in the past, weight loss may be a helpful snoring prevention method to explore.
- Limit Your Alcohol Consumption
Alcohol sedates certain muscles in your body more so than they normally sedate themselves during sleep. That's why if you drink alcohol within five hours of going to bed, you have a much higher risk of snoring.
If you're noticing a correlation between your alcohol use and snoring bouts, quit drinking, at least right before bed, and it may remedy your snoring problems.
- Get Rid of Allergens
Sometimes exposure to allergens that are present in your pillowcases, sheets, and blankets can increase people's risk of snoring. When you inhale elements that you’re allergic to or that irritate your breathing passages, disruption in airflow can occur, which can be construed as snoring.
To stop this occurrence, dust your room well, clean your ceiling fan, wash all of your bedding, take special medications, or get shots for your allergies.
- Open Your Nasal Passages
Do you find that your snoring is coming more from your nose than your throat? If so, your solution could be as simple as opening your nasal passages!
When nasal passages are obstructed, air needs to push harder to get out, which can cause snoring noises. To remove those obstructions, try one of the following suggestions:
- Take a hot shower prior to going to bed.
- Rinse out your nasal passages with a safe salt-water solution.
- Invest in a neti pot and use it to clear your nose in intervals recommended by your doctor.
- Use nasal strips to gently lift your airways open while you sleep.
- Go to an ear, nose and throat specialist to get an exam to see if you have nasal polyps or a sinus-related issue.
You'll find that any of the above suggestions should offer relief from nose-related snoring. Stick with whichever one best suits your nightly schedule.
- Drink Plenty of Water
Water is not something that's commonly associated with snoring. The truth is, though, a lot of times snoring is a result of secretions that take place in your nose and soft palate regions.
When your body is dehydrated, secretions take on a mucusy texture which can make it hard to breathe. The resulting forcing of breath can be among the top culprits for snoring.
Proper water consumption for your unique physiology is something that your doctor can shed more light on. As a general rule, women should aim to intake about 10-11 cups of water from all fluids and food consumed in a day. Men should shoot for 15-16 cups.
Wrapping Up Our 7 Snoring Prevention Tips
If you're suffering from snoring, you may be desperate to find some relief to get better sleep, feel more energized, and not disrupt other people. To achieve that end, we recommend exercising as many of our tips above as you can work into your lifestyle.
Get more sleep. Experiment with side sleeping. Watch your weight and alcohol consumption. Take hot showers and be sure to drink plenty of water.
All of those snoring prevention tips should make for a steep reduction in your odds of experiencing snoring and will offer you the relief you're looking for!
If you have been diagnosed with sleep apnea, snoring and/or allergies (read here for five of the main symptoms of sleep apnea), and it seems that your struggle could involve your sinuses or nasal passages, we suggest that you get a more personalized, in-person assessment and treatment plan. A specially trained sinus physician or ENT may be able to stop sleep disturbances, snoring problems and sleep apnea just by unblocking your sinuses!
If you happen to live in the Phoenix Metropolitan area, Sinus and Allergy Wellness Center of Scottsdale may be able to help! For over two decades, our top-rated ENT, Dr. Gergits, has been helping patients overcome their breathing conditions and ultimately lead more fulfilling lives. Let us provide the same value to you. Learn more about snoring and request your Scottsdale/Phoenix, Arizona area appointment today!