Is snoring affecting your life or your relationship? Here are some tips to reduce snoring.
Snoring can cause broken sleep and tension between couples, often resulting in one person sleeping in a separate room due to the noise.
Snoring is a common problem that occurs when air doesn’t move freely through your nose and throat, causing the surrounding tissue to vibrate.
However, snoring doesn’t have to be a nightmare – there are things you can do to help reduce it.
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Here are our tips for reducing snoring:
1. Sleep on your side
Snoring is worse when you lie on your back. Try sleeping on your side. If you’re worried about rolling onto your back during the night, use a full-length pillow as a prop to keep you on your side. You don't have to choose just one side and stay there. Start on the left side and see how you feel.
2. Lose weight
3. Limit or avoid alcohol
Drinking alcohol makes snoring worse as it relaxes your airway muscles even more than usual. The more you drink, the worse your snoring may be. Plus, alcohol can disrupt your sleep in other ways. Read more about drinking.
4. Stop smoking
While smoking is bad for your health in general, it’s also bad for snoring. It damages your heart, lungs and causes nasal congestion, which increases snoring. Read more about smoking.
5. Treat allergies
Allergies can reduce the airflow through your nose and cause you to breathe through your mouth, increasing the likelihood of snoring. Talk to your healthcare provider or pharmacist about an over-the-counter or prescription spray that might improve your condition.
You might also look at replacing your pillows and regularly washing bed linen, as dust mites and pollen can irritate your airways and make your snoring worse.
6. Try nasal strips or a nasal dilator
Stick-on nasal strips can be bought from your local pharmacy. They can be placed on the bridge of your nose to help prevent nasal airways being blocked.
A nasal dilator fits inside the nose or nostrils to hold the nasal canals open for better airflow.
7. Raise the head of your bed or sleep on two pillows
Elevating the head of your bed by about 5-10 cm might help reduce your snoring. Do this (only if you can do so safely) by putting a book or blocks under the legs at the head of the bed. If you can't do this, try sleeping on two pillows to lift your torso so you get more height.
8. Correct anatomical problems with your nose
Some people are born with a deviated septum, which is a misalignment of the wall that separates both sides of the nose. Talk to your doctor or ENT specialist as you might need surgery (septoplasty) to correct it. There are also a number of other procedures that can help open the upper airway.
Still snoring or getting worse?
If the problem persists or you have any symptoms of obstructive sleep apnoea such as daytime sleepiness, long pauses in your breathing or waking up frequently for no reason, please visit your doctor or another healthcare professional.
Remember if you or your partner’s snoring is an ongoing problem, good-quality ear plugs or a white noise machine can help minimise the sound.