It is estimated that approximately 45% of adults snore on a regular basis, and while harmless on its own, snoring may be a sign of other disorders including obstructive sleep apnea. Snoring can affect any individual as the sounds are caused by turbulent airflow vibrating internal tissues located in the nose and throat. There are many potential factors that can lead to snoring, including illness, sleeping positions, use of medication and alcohol, in these cases, snoring is often temporary. If you suffer from occasional or even chronic snoring, you may want to try several of the listed remedies before consulting a doctor or seeking pharmaceutics.
Perhaps one of the simplest and most effective cures for snoring is changing the way and position in which you snooze during a nap or through the night. By lying on your back while you sleep, you increase the likelihood of snoring as your tongue and soft palate can fold over and block your throat. To remedy this, try sleeping on your side, and if you find yourself rolling over a lot, try investing in a full length body pillow and positioning it behind you to prevent you from returning to sleeping on your back.
Alternatively buy a tennis ball and tape or stitch the ball into the mid-back section of your shirt, this will create a small amount of discomfort every time you reposition yourself onto your back, prompting your body to return to sleeping on its side without waking you up.
Lifestyle and Diet
Similarly snoring may be caused by various small changes in your lifestyle that can affect the quality of your sleep, including the following:
- Drinking alcohol four to five hours before sleeping is a common culprit of the occasional snore as drinking relaxes your muscles similarly to lying on your back. Skipping the nightcap can help improve your quality of sleep and help you avoid snoring.
- Quitting or limiting the smoking of cigarettes can also lessen the chance of snoring, as cigarette smoke irritates and swells the lining of your nose and throat, restricting airways and promoting the occasional snore.
- Sleeping too few hours every night may also factor into your snoring habits. By maintaining a poor sleeping hygiene or working long hours into the night, you run the risk of snoring. When you do eventually fall asleep after a long night awake, your body sleeps and relaxes deeply, making your muscles limp and increasing the chances of a blocked airway.
- The final lifestyle choice is to lose weight. While anybody of any weight can be a diagnosed snorer, it is likely that if you recently gained a few pounds, and suddenly started to snore you might want to consider exercising. Specifically, weight gains around your neck can constrict the diameter of your throat and result in snoring.
Oils and Humidifiers
Another alternative remedy is to look into purchasing a humidifier for your bedroom. Sleeping in dry air has the potential of dehydrating your nasal and throat membranes, which can lead to congestion. Additionally, if you suffer from allergies, you may also suffer from the sporadic snore for the same reason. Sleeping in a humid environment can relieve both allergies and your instances of snoring. Furthermore, certain essential oils, such as peppermint or eucalyptus, can assist in opening up your airways, simultaneously freshening up your room and your lungs.
Medical Treatments, Medicine & Surgery
If you find that none of the remedies above have an impact on your nightly snore, you may want to consult a medical physician. It is possible that you may be suffering from a sleep related illness that may be causing your chronic snoring. Your doctor might prescribe certain oral appliances constructed by dentists specialized in snoring and sleep apnea, or suggest using a Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) appliance to stop your snoring. The Mayo Clinic states that while these treatments are often successfully in curing your snore or sleep apnea, you may need to seek palatal implants or surgery in more severe cases.
- Linda Melone, 7 Easy Fixes for Snoring, WebMD,http://www.webmd.com/sleep-disorders/features/easy-snoring-remedies#1
- Claire Goodall, 2014, 12 Ways to Help you Snooze without Snoring, Everyday Roots, http://everydayroots.com/snoring-remedies
- National Sleep Foundation, Snoring and Sleep,https://sleepfoundation.org/sleep-disorders-problems/other-sleep-disorders/snoring
- Dr Axe, How to Stop Snoring – 11 Remedies that work, https://draxe.com/how-to-stop-snoring/
- National Health Service, 2016, 5 Ways to Stop Snoring, http://www.nhs.uk/Livewell/snoring/Pages/snorertest.aspx
- Sarah Klein, 2014, Want to Stop Snoring? Here’s what works (And what Doesn’t), http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/04/27/stop-snoring-remedies_n_5133791.html
- Siamak N Nabili MD, MPH, 2016, Snoring, MedicineNet, http://www.medicinenet.com/snoring/article.htm
- Mayo Clinic Staff, 2015, Snoring, Mayo Clinic, http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/snoring/basics/causes/con-20031874