It’s possible you only snore when you sleep on your back because in this position your tongue can fall back and block your airway. So next time your partner nudges you awake because you’re snoring, roll onto your side and see if you stop snoring in this position.
Of course, you’re very likely to roll back again unless you can train yourself not to. A popular DIY snoring cure is sewing a tennis ball into the back of your pyjamas so that sleeping on your back is too uncomfortable.
If you can raise the head of your bed so you’re sleeping with your head raised slightly, you may find this could help with snoring.1
If you’re overweight it means you’re probably carrying too much fatty tissue around your throat. By losing weight you may be able to open up your airway enough to stop snoring.
The risk of snoring is almost double among smokers compared to non-smokers. This is because smoking irritates your airways causing congestion which can lead to snoring. If you’re a smoker, quitting may enable you to stop snoring.2
Drinking alcohol can increase your chances of snoring because it relaxes the muscles in the back of your throat. So try and avoid drinking alcohol with your evening meal or after dinner. Instead, drink more water. Staying well hydrated will make your nasal secretions more liquid.3
A blocked nose is a common cause of snoring. Rinse your nose out with salt water before bed to clear your nasal passages. There’s a special device called a ‘neti-pot’ that you can get from some pharmacies to do this job. A nasal spray from your pharmacy may also help to reduce congestion in your nose.
Old pillows and a dusty bedroom are havens for dust mites, a common cause of nasal allergies. If you have a dust mite allergy, it can give you a blocked nose and contribute to snoring. Wash or replace your pillows regularly, air your duvet and try to keep your bedroom dust free.
If you ignore your body’s need for a regular bedtime and a full night’s sleep, then when you do fall asleep, you’re more likely to snore. This is because you’re overtired and your muscles relax more. Getting the right amount of sleep can help you to stop snoring.1
Snoring is a side effect of certain sedatives and sleeping pills. If you suffer from insomnia, talk to your doctor about alternative non-drug treatments that won’t increase your risk of snoring.
Exercise, even if it doesn’t lead to weight loss, can help with snoring. Toning up your body also tones up your throat muscles, which can work to stop snoring.3
Everyone is different when it comes to snoring. It depends on what’s causing you to snore and how severe your snoring is. Finding the right anti-snoring solution can help you enjoy a more peaceful and refreshing sleep.
CPAP for sleep apnea
If your snoring is caused by obstructive sleep apnea, an effective snoring treatment is continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP).6 An air pump is attached to a mask to keep your airway open while you sleep.
The ‘gold standard’ treatment for sleep apnea is CPAP therapy and it may also work as a treatment for snoring.6
Treating sleep apnea with CPAP may enable you to enjoy a more restful, less disturbed sleep and help you wake up with more energy and focus.
If CPAP and/or an oral appliance haven’t worked for you, as a last resort your surgeon may recommend other more invasive surgical procedures to open up your airway.7
Some of these include:
What is the best anti-snoring device?
The best anti-snoring device for you can be affected by a number of factors. It depends on how severe your snoring problem is, what’s causing it and also, your own personal preferences.
Some people try simple low-cost options first like a chin strap or an anti-snoring mouthguard. Fortunately, if your snoring persists, there’s a range of further options to try. If you’re still concerned about your snoring, you should talk to your doctor or visit us in store to discuss the best solution for you.
Snoring and relationships8
If you’re worried about the effect that your (or your partner’s) snoring is having on your relationship, you’re not alone. Being constantly woken up at night is a recipe for relationship problems. Shuffling off to the spare room in the middle of the night or crashing on the sofa isn’t a long term solution.
While sleeping apart may suit some couples, it obviously affects intimacy and harmony. Over the long term, snoring can also cause noise-induced hearing loss in the snorer’s partner.9 Don’t let snoring drive a wedge between you and your loved ones.
Dealing with a snoring partner
You can’t go on nudging your snoring partner forever. If home remedies haven’t stopped your partner from snoring, you could recommend that they have a home sleep test to find out if they have sleep apnea. If the answer is ‘yes,’ this is good news for you.
Why? Because the treatment for sleep apnea is also a good snoring treatment and you will at least get some uninterrupted sleep yourself.
How to handle complaints about your snoring
The worst time to discuss snoring with your partner is in the middle of the night. It’s better to wait until you and your partner have put some distance between yourselves and the problem.Because snoring is a purely physical problem, it’s not really anyone’s fault. But while your snoring may not be affecting you directly, your partner is suffering from night after night of broken sleep. Sympathy is called for on both sides.
Your relationship is too valuable to put into jeopardy over a medical problem that can be solved relatively simply. Having a calm discussion about the issue and working together to find the right snoring solution will have you both getting a good night's sleep...and in the same bed.
Source: https://www.webmd.com/sleep-disorders/features/easy-snoring-remedies#1 accessed 7 June 2019.
Source: Hoffstein V Sleep 25(5) 2002 518-21.
Source: https://www.helpguide.org/articles/sleep/snoring-tips-to-help-you-and-your-partner-sleep-better.htm/ accessed 7 June 2019.
Source:https://www.resmed.com/epn/en/consumer/products/dental-series/dental.html accessed 7 June 2019
Source: Vecchierini MF et al. Sleep Med. 2016 Mar;19:131-40.
Source: https://www.sleepfoundation.org/articles/cpap-treating-sleep-apnea accessed Aug 2019.
Source: https://www.sleep.org.au/ accessed 7 June 2019.
Source: https://www.psychologytoday.com/au/blog/sleep-newzzz/201412/how-keep-snoring-hurting-your-relationship accessed 7 June 2019.
Source: Sardesai MG et al.J Otolaryngol. 2003 Jun;32(3):141-5.