Troubled by snoring? Irritating, yes, but snoring can be the sign of a bigger problem at hand. Though 45% of normal adults snore on occasion, of that group 75% have obstructive sleep apnea (when your breathing is disrupted), which is a serious condition. Left undiagnosed, apnea can lead to high blood pressure, heart problems, diabetes, and depression. Even if it’s not apnea, snoring can also be a condition of low oxygen in the blood, obesity, and heart strain, to name a few. Left untreated not only is your health at risk, studies have shown that snoring can actually strain a marriage.
To keep your health and your love life in peace, it’s a good idea to learn what kind of snorer you are, and then apply remedies.
The Nose Snorer
This snore comes from blocked nasal passages or collapsing nostrils. Often this snorer has a closed mouth during sleep. There are a number of products at the drug store that help open nasal airways, like strips or a dilator, or drops. Taking a hot, steamy shower before bed and keeping the bedroom humid throughout the night can open the nasal passages. Relief can also be found simply sleep on the side, instead of on the back, which relieves pressure on the throat.
The Mouth Breather
Those who are capable of moving the earth with their tremendous snores fall into this category. A mouth breather sleeps with an open mouth and relaxed jaw, and the noise is created from an obstructed throat. Chin-up strips, an oral shield snore guard, and mouth spray are good over the counter remedies. This snorer can also benefit from sleeping on his or her side, to keep the airways clear from the tongue which may laze back, and keep the bedroom humid with a humidifier.
The Palatable Flutterer
Here’s a musical one – this snorer is hindered by a soft palate and a vibrating uvula. An open mouthed breather descendent, the palatal flutterer benefits from closing his or her mouth and relaxing muscles. Solutions include chin up strips, and mouth spray, as well as sleeping on his or her side to relieve the vibration and open up the passages.
Some people get all the fun – these sleepers have all the problems listed above, which means, sadly, they must try all the remedies. A humid room, sleeping on his or her side, steamy showers, strips, and sprays are all solutions this stubborn snorer should try.
All snorers can benefit from lifestyle adjustments. Avoiding alcohol before bed, having a balanced sleep schedule – that is, those who work long, hard hours with little sleep are prone to snoring simply because the body is overtired and the muscles become loose. Changing pillows, cases, and sheets can keep allergens at bay. Improving health has a great impact, too. Quitting smoking has long term benefits since smoke in the lungs irritates the airways, thus blocking them. And finally, losing weight is a great way to reduce snoring. Overweight and obese individuals develop a thicker neck with weight gain, which squeezes the throat, making it susceptible to collapse. Following these minor sleep and lifestyle adjustments, along with a visit to the doctor, could be the ticket to a quiet, good night’s sleep.