Is Snoring Keeping You Awake?
Are you looking for solutions to stop snoring? Are you reading this at 2AM because your partner sounds like a chainsaw? Fortunately, we’re here to help!
Welcome to Stop Snoring RX! My name is Chris, and I snore … or so my long-suffering wife kept telling me! I’d wake up tired, and would often have a dry mouth.
I’ve gone to great lengths on finding a cure, and along the way you’ll find my honest reviews of the various anti-snoring devices, chinstraps and snoring mouthpieces on the market – not to mention pills, pillows and other therapies.
Please see my current reviews below, where I go into great detail on some popular models, how they are designed, the pros and cons, reviews from others, and whether I think it’s worth it:
Snoring isn’t just an annoyance to yourself and those around you – it could indicate health problems such as chronic sinus problems, obesity or potentially life-threatening conditions like sleep apnea.
What Causes Snoring?
Snoring happens when the airways leading to the lungs are partially blocked. When you sleep, your muscles relax, causing the tissues in your throat to relax. As you breathe in, rushing air squeezes past this loose tissue, causing vibrations. These vibrations translate into the annoying sounds that keep family members awake.
Snoring can be caused by any these factors:
Fat around the neck area – as you sleep, the extra weight around your neck pushes down on your throat. This partially collapses the airways, causing snoring.
Sleeping on your back – this causes your tongue to settle more toward the back of your mouth, obstructing your airways.
A deviated nasal septum – The skin and cartilage separating your two nostrils is crooked, which means air doesn’t enter your body smoothly.
Allergies or a cold – A stuffy nose will block air passages, and/or cause you to breathe through your mouth when you sleep.
Poor muscle tone in the throat – As we age, the muscles in our throat weaken (just as our skin begins to wrinkle on the outside.) When we sleep, gravity makes the muscles hang down, narrowing the passageways
Pregnancy – Yup, a woman who has never snored before could be a chainsaw at night. This is due to hormonal changes going on in her body, as well as excess weight gain. It often causes swelling, which means the throat and airways will become more narrow. It will usually disappear after you give birth.,
However, talk to your doctor about your snoring. It could also be a sign of hypertension, which could lead to preeclampsia, one of the main causes of death due to pregnancy. Yikes!
Alcohol and sleeping pills – Both these contribute to the over-relaxing of throat muscles and the tongue to move to the back of your mouth when you lie on your back.
Throat structure – a long uvula (the dangling piece of tissue at the back of the throat), a soft palate (the roof of your mouth), an overbite (the tongue has less room due to a smaller chin), a short neck or large tonsils can all cause vibrations and obstructions while sleeping.
Health Risks of Snoring
Snoring is often the butt of jokes, but it could be a sign of very serious conditions and cause health risks. Talk to your doctor, who can refer you to a sleep specialist. They will find out why you snore, and recommend some solutions.
Sleep apnea – this is one of the most serious conditions, as you actually stop breathing – sometimes several hundred times per night. This not only starves your body of oxygen, but you can never get a good night’s sleep due to constantly disturbed sleep (even if you don’t remember it).
If you often wake up drowsy, with a sore throat, and you will be tired all day. The solution is a CPAP machine, a mask you put over your head. This helps increase air pressure in your throat, preventing your mouth and throat muscles from collapsing while you sleep.
Heart problems – Years of sleep apnea and interrupted sleep patterns will take its toll on your heart. The main cause is high blood pressure, which will enlarge your heart to dangerous levels.
Poor quality of life – Constantly bad sleep means drowsiness and lack of energy during the day. This not only means you will perform poorly while awake, you could have a serious accident while driving or operating heavy machinery.
Relationship problems – Snoring affects everybody in your household. It could cause your partner to sleep in another room, make them resentful, and even cause break-ups.
How to Stop Snoring
First, you need to find out what type of snorer you are – what is the reason you snore? Once you figure that out, you can find a solution.
For instance, if you feel restless before bed and need a glass of wine before bed, it could be due to restless leg syndrome, in which you can’t sleep because you have uncomfortable feelings in your legs.
If you have a deviated septum, you can try a spray and a saline solution before bed to keep your nasal passages clear during the night.
Lifestyle factors – Because excess weight presses down on your throat, losing excess pounds can help alleviate this. Heavy digestion can also be a factor, so don’t have a large meal within two hours of bedtime. Avoid alcohol and sleeping pills, which loosens your muscles too much … you’ll have to also treat the way to try and fall asleep if you rely on these too much. Smoking irritates and inflames your airways … you’ll have to quit.
Throat exercises – You can try these several times a day to tone and strengthen the muscles:
- repeat vowel sounds quickly and often
- slide your tongue behind your top row of teeth several times
- contract your inner muscles with swallowing and chewing motions
- take singing lessons
Surgery – in extreme cases, you can have surgery to remove your oversize tonsils (if that’s causing the problem), or surgery to cut away excess tissue and widen your airway.
If you snore due to lying on your back – try the tennis ball trick. Strap a ball on your back, and sleep on your side. If, during the night, you move onto your back, the tennis ball will make you uncomfortable, forcing you to turn in your sleep.
Anti-snoring devices – This is the most common medical way to stop snoring – you use a certain device to help you to stop snoring. This can be either a pillow to help align your neck a certain way, a chin strap to keep your mouth closed, a device to widen your nasal passages, or a special mouthpiece.
Note that you first have to know how you snore before trying a device. For instance, a chin strap won’t work if you snore due due to obstructions in your nasal passages.
Snoring Mouthpiece – A mouthpiece can work in different ways – it can manipulate the alignment of your jaw to keep your airways open, it can be specially designed to keep your tongue from falling back into your throat, or it can help keep your mouth closed at night.
Note that these are NOT an option if you have sleep apnea – you will need a CPAP machine for that.
If you decide to try a mouthpiece, which one works? It mainly depends on how you snore. Often you will have to try a few before you find one that works for you. Luckily, most manufacturers have a money-back guarantee.
You Will Get a Good Night of Sleep Again!
I spent many years snoring until it got so bad I went to see a doctor. He recommended a mouthpiece, and it took a few before I found one that not only worked, but was comfortable for me.
Whatever you decide, there are several options to stop snoring. Here’s some information to get you started on your journey to a soundless night of good sleep:
Thanks for visiting, and I hope you find a solution to stop snoring!