If you or your sleeping partner snores, then you know how terribly disruptive snoring can be to a good nights rest. Before you run out and buy an expensive (and obnoxious) Sleep Apnea machine, or consider going under the knife for a surgery, there are a number of things you can do from home. Keep reading to find out more about snoring causes & cures that may help you and your partner get better sleep.
In order to know how to cure something, first you need to understand what is causing it. We will go through these snoring causes and cures a long with a few potentially helpful tips and tricks. Keep reading to get rid of all that obnoxious snoring.
Causes of Snoring:
According to Obesity Medicine Association, 70% of adults who suffer with Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) are obese. While this is specific toward one of the most intense versions of snoring, it is common for your regular run of the mill snoring as well.
Weight gain is one of the leading causes for snoring. Thankfully it is one you can fix on your own without the help of any expensive machines or surgeries.
You may find that you never had any issue with snoring until you wake up one day to an angry spouse that claims you have been snoring for months. Well, you’re not alone with this one.
For some reason a number of people develop a snore with age. Often this is paired with weight gain that is also a common cause for snoring. While we unfortunately can’t turn back the clock. (Yet… Still waiting on that time machine.) You can treat some of the factors that often arise with age like weight gain, medications, and unhealthy habits.
When you drink alcohol, it has a sedative effect. It is one of the reasons why people sometimes use a small drink as a nightcap to finish out the evening before bed.
However, alcohol relaxes your muscles and puts you into a deeper sleep than usual. This combination creates the perfect conditions for a snoring storm. As you sleep deeper and your muscles in your soft palette, throat, and tongue all relax a bit more than usual, you are bound to have a full night of snoring.
Alcohol can have many adverse effects on your sleep. If you want to learn more about it, visit our blog Why Alcohol and Sleep Don’t Mix.
We all know that there are plenty of negative effects of smoking, one that is not as commonly talked about is snoring. Your membranes in your nose and throat get highly irritated by tobacco smoke.
This irritation can cause restricted airways and cause or increase the severity of snoring. We understand that quitting is not easy, but it is one of the fastest ways to get relief from snoring.
There are a number of different medications that can create or increase snoring issues. Just to name a few types are sleep aids, tranquilizers, muscle relaxers, and antihistamines. Most of these medications can all effect how you breath while you sleep. They have side effects that over relax the muscles in your airways causing blockages and causing snoring.
If you have been prescribed meditations, be sure to speak to you doctor before you get off of anything. Jumping off of medications quickly can be dangerous.
Believe it or not, your sleep position may be what is causing or increasing your snoring. If you snore, then sleeping on your back is the worst position you could be sleeping in.
When you sleep on your back all of your soft tissues in your mouth and throat are more likely to relax and fall toward the back of your throat causing blockages in your airways.
Learn more about how your sleep positions are the best for your sleep visit our blog post Sleep Positions to learn more.
When you are especially tired for a lack of sleep, a long physically laboring day, or even if you have just had an emotionally exhausting day. If you are overly tired, then you are more likely to snore.
When you reach the point of exhaustion you are more likely to fall into a deeper level of sleep where your muscles are more likely to relax more than they usually do. This is what causes the snoring in these cases.
Cures For Snoring:
Poor physical health is a common factor with snoring. Especially if you have a very low percentage of muscle mass on your body.
As you strengthen and build the muscles in your body all over, even the smaller muscles will become stronger. So even when you are working on your upper body, lower body, or abs you are also strengthening the small muscles in your neck and throat area as well. This improves your soft palettes ability to remain taut even while sleeping.
Exercise can help everyone get a better nights rest. Learn how on our blog Exercise and Sleep: Is Exercise Good For Sleep?.
We have great news. Obstructive Sleep Apnea caused by obesity for most cases is completely reversible.
Results showed that when 10% of weight was lost, there was a 20% improvement in OSA symptoms. All you need to do is lose weight. The great news is that if you have started our first cure, exercise, then you are already on your way. Not only is there the potential to completely get rid of your snoring, there are a multitude of other health benefits that come along with loosing the weight.
As you go through your weight loss, be sure to make long lasting changes to your eating habits, and exercise. While you may be able to loose weight quickly with fasting and binge diets, they are not sustainable and you will eventually gain the weight back. Unfortunately, if you gain the weight back, your snoring and OSA will come right back with it.
Change Sleeping Position
As we mentioned earlier, sleeping on your back can severely increase or even cause your snoring. If you commonly sleep on your back, then we suggest flipping over to your side.
If your snoring is being caused by a combination of relaxed muscles and gravy, then this should help a lot. This way all of your relaxed muscles will fall to the side instead of to the back of your throat, making it much easier to breath.
Drink Less Alcohol
Whether your are drinking a little or a lot, cutting alcohol out of your nightly routine can really help cut down on snoring. If you love a drink or two on the weekends, try to make it a mimosa at brunch or a beer with lunch. Excessive alcohol consumption is definitely worse than a single drink.
If you are drinking to the point of passing out your muscles are going to be far more relaxed than if you were simply going to sleep after a single drink. However, even minimal alcohol consumption in the evenings can effect the depth and quality of sleep you get and make you snore. So cut out the nightcap, it’s worth it.
Have a Healthy Sleep Schedule
Create a healthy sleeping schedule and stick to it as best as you can. This is the best way to avoid accidentally hitting the brink of exhaustion. The more balanced and regulated your sleep schedule can be, the healthier your sleep will be.
If you are not reaching a point of exhaustion then you will be less likely to snore. Keeping a healthy balanced sleep schedule naturally can also reduce the need for sleep aids and tranquilizers which will reduce snoring caused by those medicines as well.
Need to fix your sleep schedule? No problem, check out our page How To Fix Your Sleep Schedule to get back on track.
When to Seek Medical Advice
If you have exhausted every avenue, tried every possible option, lost weight, got in shape, sleep on your side, drink less alcohol, and yet you are still suffering from consistent snoring then this is absolutely time to seek medical advice, if you haven’t already. We suggest going to a medical doctor before you go out and buy one of the many “snoring solutions” on the market for consumers. Unfortunately most of these products work for light snorers. Instead, go get medical help from a specialist. This is a better use of your time and money.
With so many different possible causes to snoring, they will be able to give you a personal assessment that can shed light on how you specifically can get rid of your snoring for good.
More Extreme Solutions
Whether you are looking at a APAP, CPAP, or BiPAP machine, they all work a bit differently and serve different purposes. We will leave those details up to the professionals.
However, these machines can be loud, large, obnoxious, and expensive. Which is why we suggest the other options first. However, there is a reason why people are willing to buy these machines and strap into them every night. They work.
There are a number of different types of surgeries that will work for different people.
Whether it is your tongue, soft palette, or even your tonsils or adenoids causing the snoring will change the type of surgery that may be able to help you get the relief you’re searching for.
This of course is a drastic measure to take. However, is some situations it may be the most effective option.
Snoring Causes & Cures: Final Thoughts
If you are struggling with snoring, take care of your overall health first. Sometimes snoring is simply a side effect caused by other larger health issues. First step is to determine what is causing your snoring and then you will know how you can treat it properly. We hope some of these simple cures will be able to help relieve your snoring, if not then it may be time to visit a doctor and see if they can help you better. If you want to avoid surgery or a breathing machine, then tell your doctor this first. Then, follow their instructions. Even if it is difficult.
If you still have lingering questions or other topics you would like us to cover, then head over to our Contact Us page. We would love to hear from you and help as we can.