Do you hear snorting and rattling sounds when your partner sleeps? Are you a victim of snoring yourself? The sounds are made because the airway issue vibrates at the back of the throat, nose, and mouth at the time of sleep as we inhale and exhale. On account of partial blockage in the airways due to relaxing of muscles holding them. Snoring is a common problem. It occurs among 40 percent of all adults, twice more so in men than women and is known to increase with the advancing years.
Snoring is associated with sleep disturbance for the sufferer as well as those surrounding them, causing extreme daytime sleepiness, lowered mental function, emotional and relationship issues. In case it is severe, it can also lead to obstructive sleep apnea, where people breathe or struggle intermittently during the night. Sleep breathing disorders can be the root cause of snoring and must be managed by a medical professional to prevent chronic health conditions like cardiovascular disease.
The Type of Snorer You Are
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Understanding the location or origin of your snores is necessary for getting the best treatment for your condition. Here are the various types of snorers and what could be the possible first course of treatment for them.
#1 Mouth Snorers
Snoring associated with the mouth occurs when you breathe through the mouth during sleep rather than using the nose. A test to see if the snoring can be carried out with the mouth closed ensures this type of snoring is accurately detected. For treating this condition, devices are needed to keep the mouth closed at night and prevent snoring. Tongue-based snoring is when the tongue falls at the back of the throat and blocks the airways. A means of assessing if you are a tongue based snorer is to stick out your tongue and use the teeth to hold it. A reduction in snores if this takes place means you are snoring due to the obstruction of the throat by the tongue. Using mandibular advancement devices or sleeping on the side could be of benefit to you.
#2 Throat Snorer
This is when the snoring is caused by the vibration of soft tissues in the throat. It is also known as palatal flutter. Seeking professional help for this would be effective.
#3 Nasal Snorer
Nasal congestion or collapse can happen with nostrils collapsing or undergoing congestion causing blockage of the airways. A simple evaluation is to press one nostril with a finger, close your mouth and try to breathe. If the nostril collapses, then nasal dilators can prove helpful. Check for allergies if you cannot breathe due to congestion.
Understanding the Causes of Snoring
While most people snore once in a while, if you are snoring regularly at night, it can exacerbate sleep issues, increased health problems, daytime aviation and irritability. If snoring keeps your partner awake, it can also cause problems for others. Sleeping in separate rooms is not the only cure. To understand how to treat snoring, you need to know what causes it.
Snoring takes place when there is a failure of air to move freely through the nose and throat at the time of sleep. This causes the tissue surrounding the throat or nose to vibrate leading to the rattling and snorting noises characteristic of snoring. The tongue can stand in the way of smooth breathing too. People with excessive nasal or throat floppy tissue are more likely to have this problem. As people snore for different reasons, it is critical to understand the causes behind it. Deeper, quieter sleep can only be gained if you first consider the factors that cause it in the first place.
As one reaches middle age and beyond, the throat narrows down and the muscular tone in the throat lessen. Lifestyle changes, fresh bedtime routines, and throat based exercising can prevent snores.
Another reason for snoring is that fatty tissue and lack of muscle tone are a problem. If not overweight in particular, carrying excess weight around the neck or throat can cause snores. Weight loss and exercise are the means to put an end to snoring caused due to this factor.
The Build of the Nasal Passage
Additionally, the way the nasal passage is structured can pave the way for snoring. For example, men are more common snorers and have narrower air passages as against women, a possible reason for this gender difference. A cleft palate, narrower throat, adenoids and other physical attributes that lead to snoring are genetic. While there is no control over the build or gender, snoring can be controlled with the right exercises, routines and changes in lifestyle.
Nasal and Sinus Problems
Blockage of airways or a stuffy nose can cause a problem with inhalation and lead to a vacuum in the throat. This produces snoring sounds.
Stimulants and Medications
Alcoholic intake, smoking and the use of certain medications such as tranquilizers like Valium and Ativan can raise muscle relaxation and lead to excessive snoring.
Also, the sleeping position plays a specific role in snoring. Sleeping on the back causes the throat’s back to relax and block the airways.
If one is obese and out of shape, this can lead to a real problem of snoring. Overeating or paucity of exercise can cause a rise in the fat deposit around the throat. This extra and additional fat deposit causes the airway to be normal and affects normal breathing through the creation of an obstruction in the oropharynx at the time of sleep. Snoring can also be even more difficult. Men put more weight on their neck than women. The fatty tissues add further pressure onto the airway, creating a blockage. This is why rolling over can be beneficial. Exercise, loss of weight, treatment of obesity can be taken to end this problem and contribute to overall good health too. Snoring and excessive weight impact children as well. Snoring and sleep apnea- a breathing disorder- was considerably higher in children facing obesity.
Menopause symptoms cause an issue as women get older. The muscle tone diminishes and causes weight gain. Women have reached the age of 70, and are likely to be snorers as men of the similar age. Staying fit and healthy is the best way out.
As one reaches middle age, the throat narrows down and the muscle tone in the throat decreases. Growing older is part of life, but you can opt for differences in snoring patterns and eliminate changes altogether with positive lifestyles, additional routine and throat exercises.
Nasal and Sinus Issues
Blocked airways or stuffy noses can make it tough to inhale and create a vacuum in the throat. This exacerbates snoring. Keeping a house clean, free of dust and healthy diet can eliminate snoring caused by sinus and nasal problems.
Alcohol, Medication, and Smoking
Alcoholic intake, smoking, and specific medications can induce muscle relaxation exacerbating snoring. Smoking causes major problems with lung breathing. This includes e-cigarettes as well.
Position of Sleeping
Sleep positioning plays a critical role in snoring and obstructive sleep apnea syndrome. Positioning therapy using head positioning pillow ensures that snoring sounds are reduced. In most patients, overweight or normal weight individuals can use a pillow to ward off throat obstruction and use a special pillow to stop snoring.
Sleep apnea causes snoring and it is more prevalent in those with asthma. This condition has been on the rise in recent times. Possible causes include nerve reflex problems, inconsistent hypoxia, inflammation, and leptin. Other issues include medication, obesity, smoking, nose diseases and acid reflux syndrome. Using asthma natural remedies may also be used to stop snoring for asthma sufferers who snore.
Ruling Out Difficult Causes
Snoring can lead to sleep apnea, a disorder where breathing is interrupted and normal snoring does not interfere with the sleep quality as much as apnea. So you may be suffering from sleepiness and fatigue in the daytime. This can cause sleep-related breathing issues. You may experience loud snoring, breathing, sleep at the wrong time and more.
Monitoring the snores for patterns can identify the reasons why you snore, what makes it difficult and how to go about stopping it. For identifying important patterns, it is critical to maintain a sleep journal and if you have someone to provide feedback on the sleep quality, you can easily set up precedents for better sleep quality.
Closed mouth snoring suggests your tongue may be the cause of the problem. Open mouth snoring is related to throat tissues. Snoring while resting on your back means sleep habits and lifestyle modifications could be the cure. Snoring in different sleep positions requires more comprehensive treatment.
Strategies for Coping With Snoring: Tips To Help You Out
So many anti-snoring devices and strategies are there, with more being added alongside. Finding the right solution for the snoring can seem a tough task. Many devices are not backed by research and plenty of techniques need to be in place to fend off snoring. Every remedy is not right for the person. Specifically, finding a snoring cure requires a lot of commitment, changes in the lifestyle and the will to battle setbacks.
#1 Changing Your Sleeping Position
The first and foremost remedy is to change the sleeping position. Raising the head 4 inches eases breathing and encourages the tongue and jaw to move forward. Prevent snoring by fending off the crimping of neck muscles.
#2 Sleep on the Side
Another good idea is to sleep on the side instead of the back. Try wedging a pillow to prevent your body from turning from the side. Sleeping on the side will soon become a habit and try this remedy to see if it works for you.
#3 Anti-Snoring Mouth Appliance
These devices help the airways to remain open by bringing together the tongue and the lower jaw forward during sleep. Dentist created appliances can be costly but cheaper options are also available.
#4 Clear Nasal Passage
If there is a stuffy nose, opt for rinsing sinuses with saline before going to bed. Using a net pot, nasal strips or nose decongestant can help you to breathe easily while sleeping. When you have allergies, watch out for dust mites and pet dander or opt for allergy medication.
#5 Ensure the Bedroom Air Remains Moist
The air in the bedroom remains moist. Dry air can lead to nose and throat membrane irritation and swollen nasal tissues can be dealt with through a humidifier.
#6 Lifestyle Changes Can Stop Snoring
Losing some weight can lower fatty tissues towards the throat’s back and decrease snoring. Quitting smoking is another factor that you need to consider. This is because smoking irritates the membrane in the nose and the throat. which causes snoring and blocks the airways. When quitting is possible, it brings quick and instant relief.
#7 Avoid Sleeping Pills, Alcohols and Sedatives
These can relax the muscles in the throat and interfere with the ability to breathe. Talking to the doctor about prescription medication could be a way out. Medicines encourage deeper sleep and ward off snoring.
#8 Watch Over Your Diet
It is important to eat right before going to bed. Research shows that eating large meals or consuming foods like soy milk or dairy can exacerbate snoring.
#9 Carry Out Exercises
Exercise lowers snoring, though it does not lead to weight loss. Tone various muscles in the body such as arms, abs, and legs to initiate a fitter body and resilience against snoring. Specific exercises can also strengthen the muscles in the throat.
Research shows that through the pronouncing of certain vowel sounds and curling of the tongue in a certain way, muscles in the upper respiratory tract become stronger and snoring lessens. Repeat vowels for three minutes a few times in a day and slide your tongue backward for vocal tract exercises. Another good exercise is to close the mouth and purse the lips. With the mouth open, moving the jaw to the right and holding for some time and repeating on the other side works wonders. Looking in the mirror to see the uvula move up and down also works well.
#10 Opt for Medical Treatment
If you try self-help solutions for snoring without success, there are medical treatments that can make a difference too. New advances in the snoring treatment have been made and devices are becoming comfortable and efficient.
Talk to your doctor and recommend the medical cures for treating snores. Some of the medical treatments that can work are as follows.
Continuous Positive Airway Pressure
To ensure the airway remains open during sleep, a machine at the bedside blows air that is pressurized into the mask worn over the nose or face.
Laser Assisted Uvulopalatoplasty
This involves the use of a laser to shorten the uvula. This is the soft tissue hanging at the throat’s back. Small cuts need to be made in the soft palate on either side. As the healing of the cuts takes place, surrounding tissues stiffen to prevent vibrations that initiate snoring.
This involves the Pillar procedure for inserting small plastic implants within the soft palate. This prevents the soft palate from collapsing and causes less snoring.
This uses low radio frequency levels of heat to remove uvula tissues and soft palate that vibrates at the time of snoring. The procedure is performed with local anesthesia and takes around 30 minutes.
Customized Dental Devices
Custom-fitted dental devices and lower positioning of the jaw helps to open the airways to bring the lower jaw or tongue forward at the time of rest. Surgical procedures like adenoidectomy, tonsillectomy UPPP, and TAP increase the airways size by removing tissues and correcting issues.
Different Types of Devices
Anti snoring devices can help to prevent snoring. These include nasal devices. If the snoring is coming from the nose, benefit from nasal dilators or nasal strips. Nasal strips are self-adhesive tapes specific in appearance to sticking plasters. Place the nasal strip on the external part of the nose. Strips pull the nostrils away and stop them from narrowing during sleep. A nasal dilator is a metal or plastic device that appears like a nose ring. Place it within your nose before sleeping and it pushes nostrils apart while asleep.
If snores are emanating from the mouth, vestibular shields or chin strips can work. Chin strips are placed under the chin, which prevents the mouth from falling open when sleeping. The other device is like a gum shield that blocks the airflow and fits within the mouth. This forces breathing through the nose, which prevents the opening of the mouth and snoring.
If snoring is on account of the tongue base vibrating, a mandibular advancement device is suitable. It is designed for pushing the jaws and the tongue ahead. This raises the space at the back of the throat and narrows the airways causing the tongue vibration. MAD lasts for 18 months before being replaced.
Several surgical techniques can be used for snoring elimination. Surgery for snoring is the last resort, whereby all treatment options have been tried and failed. UPPP (uvulopalatopharyngoplasty), UP (uvulopalatoplasty), palate implants and radiofrequency ablation of the soft palate are some of the surgical options available.
Natural Cures For Snoring
#1 Peppermint Oil and Goldenseal
If snoring takes place on account of chest congestion or nasal blockage, peppermint oil can relive it. Sore throat relief and congestion in the nasal passageways can be used for stoping snoring for issues of congestion. Goldenseal is another supplement which can be ingested in capsule, liquid or powder form. Herbal tea can also work well for peppermint and goldenseal herbs.
#2 Fenugreek and Spearmint
Digestion is a critical part of the sleep patterns and leads to snoring. Fenugreek and spearmint are herbs that can eliminate snoring from digestion problems. These herbs lower acid amount and lessen the chances of snoring while sleeping. Fenugreek also disrupts sleep apnea and improves digestion problems that lead to snoring.
#3 Vitamin C Rich Foods
The sinuses can cause snoring. Vitamin C promotes healthy immunity and clears the sinus problems. Pineapple and papaya also contain bromelain to ward off sinus.
This herb works well for chest colds. Applying eucalyptus oil can prevent snoring in the sleep. Putting the leaves of this herb in an inhaler and breathing through the vapor can clear the mouth or nose sinuses.
Snoring is a real issue and dealing with the problem can be tough if you don’t know the cause. Analyzing the causes behind snoring can pave the way for efficacious treatment. From medical conditions to obesity, there are a host of reasons why sleep-related problems like snoring will persist. Dealing with the problem involves a thorough scrutiny of the factors that influence snoring and devising a treatment plan to counter these. So, opt for these methods and treat your snoring issues with ease to ensure a good night’s sleep.