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Learning How to Stop Snoring is Definitely Doable

Snoring in itself is not damaging to the health, but can disturb you and your partner’s sleep. Most people who suffer from the problem are looking for information on how to stop snoring. Well, there isn't a clear-cut answer to this problem: if there were, you wouldn't be reading this. If you are trying to find out how to stop snoring, you will first have to determine the nature and severity of your snoring.



It can be strenuous for your body to snore, even if it is not related to a more serious health issue. Being woken up and shoved constantly by your partner will disturb your sleep, even if the snoring itself does not. It can also be incredibly bothersome to hear morning after morning that you kept a person up all night. What can you do? Is there a cure for snoring? After all, your snoring issues are not your fault: they are a completely involuntary reaction. Will you really have to start sleeping separately? Don't despair: there are some snoring remedies available over the counter that may help alleviate the problem.

Studies show that snoring is a very common problem; 20% of men and 10% of women snore. It is most common in middle aged or older men, especially those who are overweight or obese. So how can you prevent snoring? And when does it become a real health issue?

Causes of Snoring

how to stop snoringSnoring noises are caused by the soft palate and other parts of the upper respiratory tract that can collapse and produce noises. You snore when the muscles in the pharynx relaxes during sleep. The tongue falls backwards towards the soft palate and the uvula.

Most commonly, a person snores mostly in the deep stages of sleep, when all the muscles are very relaxed. This means that you most often snore in the middle or late in the night. The degree of snoring varies from night to night and from person to person. Some people snore more when they have had a hard day and are exhausted, because all muscles become extra relaxed. 

For the person who snores this is rarely an issue: as mentioned before, snoring does not necessarily have to ruin the quality of your own sleep. Common snoring is more bothersome for the person sleeping next to you.

Large tonsils, nasal polyps, nasal allergies, swelling of the airways or tumors can all contribute to snoring, and in very severe cases it can be necessary to see a specialist. Generally you can say that the older you get the more you will snore, since tissue is loosened with age and muscle mass is lost. Furthermore people tend to gain weight as they age, which causes fat to gather around the soft palate and reduces space.

A crooked nasal septum causes a vacuum in the throat when inhaling. The decreased passage of air causes the soft tissue in the throat to collapse more easily, making the palate vibrate. When you have a cold, the passage of air is also decreased and snoring worsens.

 

When a woman complains about her partner’s snoring, her girlfriends will often suggest she makes him get surgery for snoring. Studies show that you should think very carefully before doing this, however.

 

Over the past decades, doctors have tried many different types of surgeries, and many snorers have been unnecessarily operated on, because the efficiency of these procedures is not sufficiently researched. Most of them will not fix the problem or only make it slightly better. Although surgery for snoring used to be quite popular, most doctors nowadays will not recommend or perform them.

This is not only because surgery does not work in most cases; there can be several side effects. When for example the uvula and some of the soft palate is removed to create more space in the pharynx, some patients have experienced permanent slurring of their speech and to get liquid in their nose when they drink. There are several other procedures that some doctors offer, however, none of these are commonly recommended

how to stop snoringSince there are no known surgical fixes for snoring that have shown positive effects in all patients, most doctors will first of all recommend that snorers lose weight. It is also advisable to avoid alcohol, sleeping medications and other sedatives, as these will cause additional relaxation of the muscles. 

Drinking a glass of wine with dinner will not make you snore, but drinking alcohol before bed will very likely make your snoring much worse. Don't drink and snore!

Tips on How to Stop Snoring

  • Avoid drinking alcohol or taking sleeping aids or sedatives before you go to bed
  • Lose weight: even a few pounds can make a huge difference
  • Do not sleep on your back. If you cannot avoid this naturally, you can sow a tennis ball into your night shirt or dress, between the shoulder blades, making you unable to lie on your back.
  • Use earplugs (this is meant for your partner of course)
There are many home remedies for snoring available that do not require surgery of prescription medicine, so more efficient than others. Some find that an ergonomic snoring pillow does the trick, other have used all natural snoring sprays with success.

Other snoring remedies include mouth guards, CPAP masks, chin straps, nasal dilators, nose strips and many more. Look for more info about these options on our page with anti snoring devices.

When finding out how to stop snoring, first of all you need to make sure that you do not have sleep apnea, a disease where snoring causes the breathing to stop completely during the night and makes you wake up constantly. If you do suffer from sleep apnea, or believe that you do, you will need to see a professional.

Symptoms of sleep apnea can include:

  • Waking up several times during the night
  • Extremely loud snoring
  • Restless sleep and night sweats
  • Several trips to the bathroom during the night
  • Waking up feeling fatigued
  • Waking up with a headache
  • Problems staying awake during the day, for example at meetings, when watching TV, when driving etc.
  • Decreased sex drive
  • Trouble focusing
  • Trouble learning and bad memory
Useful Links:

Have you ever tried a smartphone app to monitor your sleeping patterns and that might even help with your snoring? The people from Quit Snoring (previously 'Snoring U') have created such an app. Go to their site and discover how it might help you!


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