Do you snore? You’re in good company – 37 million Americans snore on a regular basis (source). And if you’re a snorer, there’s a good chance someone has told you about it (or complained about it) at some point in your life, whether a spouse, a roommate, a sibling, or a parent. Although you might think of snoring as a nuisance, remember that it can also be a sign of a larger health issue, like obstructive sleep apnea. Addressing the cause of your snoring and learning how to stop snoring can improve the quality of your sleep, decrease daytime fatigue and irritability, and perhaps even help your loved ones catch more shut-eye.
How to Stop Snoring
Sleep on Your Side
Some people find that simply changing their sleeping position prevents snoring. Lying on your back makes your tongue and soft palate press against the back of your throat, which can cause a vibrating sound. Try falling asleep on your side, and if you naturally turn on your back in the night, purchase a full-length body pillow to act as a barrier. Still having problems staying on your side? Invest in an adjustable bed, and sleep with your head slightly elevated.
Keep Your Nasal Passages Clear
In some cases, a blocked nasal passage will cause snoring. If you’re struggling with allergies, visit a doctor for treatment. Since dust can contribute to allergies, regularly change out your pillows, dust the surfaces in your home, and purchase an air purifier. Taking a hot shower right before you go to bed or using a neti pot with a saltwater solution can also help open your nasal passages.
Drink Plenty of Water
Drinking water provides many health benefits, including reducing snoring. When you are dehydrated, the secretions in your nose and soft palate become stickier, which can cause snoring (source). According to the Mayo Clinic, men should consume at least 15.5 cups of fluids a day, and women should consume at least 11.5 cups of fluid a day.
Avoid Smoking and Drinking Alcohol
When it comes to snoring, it is best to avoid consuming alcohol and smoking. Since alcohol relaxes the muscles in your throat, it increases your likelihood of snoring. When you do decide to drink, make sure to stop at least three hours before you go to bed. Smoking inflames the tissues in your upper airway, which also leads to snoring.
Now that you’ve learned some tips on how to stop snoring, take action today. If you’ve tried making lifestyle changes to prevent snoring and haven’t experienced changes, consult with your doctor. There are certain medicines and sleeping devices that can curb the issue.
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