Just about everyone snores once in awhile, but if snoring happens frequently it can affect the quantity and quality of your sleep. Snoring can lead to poor sleep and daytime fatigue, irritability, and increased health problems. Not all snoring is the same. In fact, everyone snores for different reasons. When you get to the bottom of why you snore, then you can find the right solution for a better night’s sleep.
Snoring could mean Sleep Apnea, a potentially life threatening condition that requires medical attention. Sleep Apnea is a breathing obstruction causing you to keep waking up to start breathing again. Normal snoring doesn’t interfere with the quality of your sleep as much as sleep apnea, so if you’re suffering from extreme fatigue and sleepiness during the day, your problem may be more than just snoring and you should consult a medical professional.
People who snore often have too much throat and nasal tissue or “floppy” tissue that is more prone to vibrate. The position of your tongue can also get in the way of breathing. Figuring out whether the cause of your snoring is within your control or not is a great place to start. Some common causes of snoring are:
- Age – As you get older, your throat becomes narrower and the muscle tone in your throat decreases.
- Anatomy – Men have narrower air passages than women and are more likely to snore. A narrow throat, a cleft palate, enlarged adenoids, and other physical attributes that contribute to snoring are sometimes inherited.
- Nasal and Sinus problems – Blocked airways make inhaling difficult and create a vacuum in the throat leading to snoring.
- Being Overweight – Extra fatty tissue compresses the air passages and contributes to snoring.
- Alcohol, Smoking, Medications – Alcohol, smoking, and certain medications can increase muscle relaxation leading to more snoring.
- Sleep Position – Sleeping flat on your back causes the flesh of your throat to relax and block your airway.
It’s beneficial to note the different ways you sleep and snore. Sleep positions reveal a lot and figuring out how you snore can reveal why you snore.
- Closed-mouth snoring may indicate a problem with your tongue.
- Open-mouth snoring may be related to the tissues in your throat.
- Snoring when sleeping on your back is probably mild snoring.
- Snoring in all sleep positions can mean your snoring is more severe.
There are many things you can do on your own to help stop snoring. Home remedies and lifestyle changes can go a long way in resolving the problem.
- Change Sleep Positions – Try to avoid sleeping on your back. Gravity makes it more likely for your tongue and soft tissues to drop backward and obstruct your airway.
- Elevate your Head – Elevating your head four inches may ease breathing and encourage your tongue and jaw to move forward. You can either add a pillow or raise the head of the bed.
- Lose Weight – Losing even a little bit of weight can reduce fatty tissue in the back of the throat and decrease or even stop snoring.
- Avoid Alcohol and Sedatives – They relax the muscles in the throat and interfere with normal breathing.
- Keep Air Moist – Use a humidifier. Dry air can irritate membranes in the nose and throat.
- Gargle – Gargle with Peppermint mouthwash to shrink the lining of your nose and throat. Add one drop of Peppermint Oil to a glass of cold water. Only Gargle…Do Not Swallow.
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