Sleep is necessary for a healthy lifestyle and for his/her mental stability. When a person is not able to get proper sleep, then it is regarded as a sleep disorder. Various common sleep disorders include snoring, insomnia, sleep apnea, obstructive sleep apnea, and sleep deprivation. But, one of the most common sleep disorders is snoring, which is described in this blog.
Snoring is a condition that can affect anyone and is defined as the vibration of the respiratory structures due to obstructed air movement during breathing while sleeping, which results in sound. Snoring is categorized by soft sounds, but in various cases, it can be loud and unpleasant. It worsens as the age progresses and it has also been reported that men develop the problem of snoring more as compared to women and overweight people are at higher risk of developing snoring problems. Basically, snoring in sleep is a sign of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) and is a factor of sleep deprivation.
Sleep apnea is a life-threatening condition, which causes breathing obstruction. It is a fact that normal snoring doesn’t interfere with the quality of your sleep. But, if you feel extremely fatigued and sleepy during the day, then your problem may be more than just snoring and you require immediate medical attention.
What causes snoring?
Snoring happens when the person is not able to move air freely through his/her nose and mouth during sleep. It is often caused by the narrowing of airways, either due to poor sleep posture or abnormalities of the soft tissues in the throat. Basically, narrow airways get in the way of smooth breathing and create the sound of snoring. Below are various causes of snoring:
- Age – Age plays a major role in snoring, as you reach middle age or beyond, your throat becomes narrower and the muscle tone in throat decreases, which develops snoring problems.
- The way you’re built – As compared to women, men have narrower air passages and are more likely to develop snoring problems. It is also due to narrow throat, enlarged adenoids, and other physical attributes that contribute to snoring. Moreover, snoring problems are often hereditary.
- Nasal and sinus problems – People having blocked airways create a vacuum in the throat, which leads to snoring.
- Being overweight or out of shape – Overweight people develops fatty tissues and poor muscle tone, which contributes to snoring.
- Poor muscle tone in the throat and tongue – Sometimes, the throat and tongue muscles are relaxed, allowing them to collapse and fall back into the airway, which results in snoring.
- Alcohol, smoking, and medications – Alcohol consumption, smoking, and certain medications, including sleeping pills increase muscle relaxation and lead to snoring.
- Sleep posture – Sleeping positions or posture matter, and sleeping flat on your back may cause the flesh of the throat to relax and block the airways, which will result in snoring.
Additionally, there are various health risks and other complications associated with snoring, which includes strain on the heart due to prolonged suffering from obstructive sleep apnea, high blood pressure, and enlargement of the heart, with higher risks of heart attack and stroke. Furthermore, snoring leads to drowsiness during the day, which interferes with the quality of life, work, and increases the risk of car accidents.
Snoring Prevention, Cures, Solutions And Remedies:
Occasional snoring is not a serious issue, but, it becomes a habit, then you are not only the culprit behind your partner’s sleep but also in danger of impairing your own sleep quality. Therefore, to overcome the problems of snoring, medical assistance and other remedies are needed to get a good night’s sleep. These are mentioned below:
Self-help cures or remedies to stop snoring:
You can try to change your lifestyle, which may prove to be effective in stopping your snoring problems. These include:
- Lose weight – Losing weight by regular exercise may help in reducing fatty tissues at the back of the throat and helps in stopping the snoring problem.
- Regular sleep patterns – Create a bedtime schedule with your partner and stick to it, because this allows you to sleep together and better, which may decrease your snoring.
Bedtime remedies to stop snoring:
- Avoid caffeine, heavy meals, and dairy products within two hours of going to bed because these make inhalation difficult and leads to snoring.
- To help you breathe easily and clearly, you should use nasal decongestants or nasal strips to clear nasal passages because a stuffy nose makes inhalation difficult and creates a vacuum in the throat, and leads to snoring.
- You can try reposition method by elevating your head four inches to stop snoring because reposition eases breathing.
Throat exercises to stop snoring:
Throat exercises are very effective in reducing or stopping snoring. There are various ways you can do to stop snoring, these are:
- Try to pronounce vowel sounds and curl the tongue in specific ways. These help you in strengthening your muscles in the upper respiratory tract and helps in reducing snoring.
- To stop snoring, you can try your hand on singing because it increases muscle control in the throat and soft palate.
Medical cures, solutions and treatments for snoring:
You should head to a doctor or a medical professional if you find a change in your attention or memory, excessive daytime drowsiness, morning headaches, or episodes or not breathing (apnea). Your doctor will suggest the proper medical treatments, these are:
- Dental appliances, oral devices, or lower jaw positioners are provided by the doctor to help you open your airway by bringing your tongue or lower jaw forward during sleep.
- Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) treatment helps in keeping your airways open while you sleep. CPAP is a machine, which blows pressurized air into the mask, that you can wear over your nose or face to stop snoring.
- Surgeries including tonsillectomy, thermal ablation palatoplasty (TAP), and adenoidectomy, increase the size of airways by surgically removing tissues. Moreover, a surgery named pillar procedure is an effective surgery in which small plastic implants are inserted into the soft palate, which stops vibrations that cause snoring.
If you know anyone who’s trying to kick that noisy snoring habit, then please share this blog. Also, post comments in case you have any health queries.