Snoring occurs when the air passes through the throat while breathing in our sleep. This results in the vibrations of the relaxed tissues in the throat leading to harsh and irritating sounds that we call snoring.
Snoring is known to disrupt the sleep of the person as well as that of the partner. Also, even if soring is not affecting your sleep too much, it should still not be ignored as it might indicate a sign of an underlying serious health condition. Hence, it is important to find out why snoring occurs and adopt ways to avoid it.
In some cases, snoring occurs due to sleeping on the back or consuming alcohol close to bedtime.
Make sure you get sound refreshed sleep of 7 to 9 hours every night. Sleep deprivation is a major cause of snoring. Sleep deprivation can cause the throat muscles to become too relaxed making you susceptible to developing airway obstruction and snoring.
Snoring may, in turn, increase the risk of sleep deprivation as it leads to interrupted sleep thus creating a vicious cycle.
This marks the need to adopt methods to ensure you get a sound sleep every night in order to avoid snoring.
Sleeping on the back can sometimes cause the tongue to move to the back of the throat, as a result of which the airflow through the throat is partially blocked.
Sleeping on the side would allow the air to pass easily and stop or reduce your snoring.
Raising the head of the bed by a few inches would help to reduce snoring by keeping the airways open. You may use bed risers and pillows to get that little extra height.
Avoid the intake of alcohol for at least 4 hours before the bedtime to avoid snoring. Alcohol causes relaxation of the throat muscles, resulting in snoring.
Alcohol may also disrupt your sleep in several other ways.For instance, alcohol intake is linked to a shorter duration of REM sleep. REM sleep plays an important role in memory formation. Also, dreaming occur during this phase of sleep.
Reducing your alcohol intake would improve the duration and quality of REM sleep and thus, help you avoid snoring while also improving your memory and sleep quality.
Smoking is one of the common causes of snoring. It can also worsen your snoring and make it difficult for you to overcome this issue in spite of trying other treatments. Smoking can contribute to snoring by increasing your risk of obstructive sleep apnea.
Therapies such as nicotine patches or gum could help you quit smoking. It will not just help you stop snoring but also protect you against other complications like COPD, asthma, and lung cancer.
If you are using sedatives for the treatment of insomnia or depression, it is advisable to talk to your physician to findthe other options you have to manage your sleep issues. Sedatives, like alcohol, can cause the muscles in the throat to relax resulting in snoring. Stopping the use of sedatives might ease this problem.
You can place the stick-on nasal strips on the bridge of your nose to increase the space available in the nasal passage for the air to flow. This would make your breathing easier and more effective and eliminate or reduce snoring.
You can also try using an external nasal dilator. An external nasal dilator is a stiffened adhesive strip that can be applied to the top of the nose. It would decrease the airflow resistance, thus making it easier for you to breathe.
Alternatively, you can try internal nasal dilators that you need to place inside of the nose, for the same purpose.
You can learn more about the products and devices that are specially designed to help reduce snoring by attending our AARC Approved Live Respiratory Webinars. These webinars are aimed at providing information about the latest treatments available for the management of snoring and the underlying conditions.
Excess tissues in the throat may cause obstruction to the flow of air and worsen snoring.If you are obese or overweight, weight loss could help to reduce the amount of tissues in the throat and thus, reduce snoring.
You can try losing weight by reducing your caloric intake. Eating smaller meals comprising nutrient-dense foods can also help you lose weight. You can also try getting regular exercise to lose fat.
Allergies are known to reduce the airflow through the nose, forcing you to breathe through the mouth. This can increase the likelihood of snoring.
The use of allergy medications might improve the airflow through the nose and provide relief from snoring. Most allergic medications are available in the forms of nasal sprays, pills, and liquids.
Some effective anti-allergy drugs include oral decongestants, non-sedating antihistamines, sedating antihistamines, inhaled nasal corticosteroids, and leukotriene modifiers.
You can attend our Respiratory Disease & Care Webinar to learn more about the role of anti-allergy medications in the management of snoring and allergies.
A deviated septum caused due to the misalignment of the wall separating both the sides of the nose can restrict the airflow through the nose and cause snoring.
A deviated septum might also cause breathing through the mouth during sleep resulting in snoring. Hence, it is necessary to correct this abnormality through a surgery, called septoplasty to reduce or stop snoring.
The treatment of snoring depends on the underlying conditions responsible for causing it. Our online respiratory webinars are aimed at providing detailed information about the causes of snoring and the treatment options available for managing this issue. Doctors and other medical professionals can attend our webinars to learn the latest options for managing snoring so that they are able to recommend the best treatments for their patients.