While snoring is relatively harmless, it can be frustrating, especially if you share a bed. There are a few different causes for snoring and a variety of solutions. It may take a bit of trial and error to pinpoint an effective solution. With some persistence you may be able to prevent snoring and get a better night’s sleep.
Snoring can be caused by your soft palate, in the back of your throat, relaxing and vibrating as you breathe. It can also be caused if your nasal passages are clogged. The last, and more serious cause of snoring can be obstructive sleep apnea. Obstructive sleep apnea has more serious side effects, such as excessive daytime sleepiness and high blood pressure and should be addressed by a doctor.
The Soft Palate
When snoring is caused by the soft palate relaxing into the throat, studies suggest changing your sleep position. The soft palate collapses into the throat and obstructs your breathing if you are laying on your back. Sleeping on your side or stomach may be all you need to do to prevent snoring. You can position pillows to prevent you from rolling onto your back, or even attach a tennis ball to the back of your pajamas. Alcohol can also cause your muscles to relax and should be avoided a few hours before sleeping. WebMD also suggests that in some cases weight loss can also reduce snoring that is caused by the soft palate.
When snoring is caused by clogged nasal passages, you can address both the nasal passage and what causes the clogs. WebMD recommends clearing your nasal passages before you sleep by taking a hot shower, or using a sinus cleanse such as the neti pot. Strips that hold your nasal passages open can also help in some cases.
Your clogged nasal passages may be caused by something in your room. Allergens such as dust mites, and pet dander can cause you to feel congested at night. If you don’t normally feel congested during the day, try washing your pillows more often, dusting the furniture and not allowing your pets to sleep with you. If that doesn’t help, you may need to consider getting a mattress cover to prevent dust mites or even removing your carpet.
WebMD so warns to avoid over the counter drugs and solutions because they are rarely tested to prove effectiveness. With a few home remedies, you can reduce your snoring. If your snoring persists and remains bothersome for you or your partner, you should consult a doctor to see if there is some other underlying problem.
Photo “Unglued” courtesy of mmarcotte51