Causes of snoring and ways for remedy
Just about everyone snores at one time or the other through their life time for different reasons, some people snore on a regular basis and this disrupts the quality of their sleep.
Snoring is the harsh buzzing sound some of us make when we’re asleep.
Experts say this could lead to daytime fatigue, irritability and some health problems too. It could also create some major emotional issues.
Snoring happens when you can’t move air freely through your nose and throat while sleeping. This makes the surrounding tissue vibrate, thereby producing the familiar snoring sound.
People who snore regularly often have too much throat and nasal tissue or floppy tissue that is more prone to vibrating. The position of the tongue can also get in the way of smooth breathing.
It is important to understand the cause behind your snoring because different people snore for different reasons. Understanding why one snore would help one find the right solutions that will help one get a better and quieter sleep. Some common causes of snoring are.
• Sleeping posture: Certain postures while sleeping can cause snoring like sleeping flat on your back. When you sleep flat on your back, it causes the flesh of your throat to relax and block the airways.
• Age: As a person grows older (middle age and beyond), the throat becomes narrower and the muscle tone in the throat decreases.
• Alcohol and Smoking: Alcohol intake and smoking can cause snoring. Smoking irritates the tissue in the throat, this leads to inflammation that causes snoring. Alcohol relaxes the muscles of the upper airway which can become floppy and make noises while you breathe when sleeping.
• Being overweight or out of shape: Fatty tissues and poor muscle tone are major contributions to snoring. You might not be overweight generally, carrying excess weight around your neck and throat can cause snoring.
• Nasal and Sinus Problem. Blocked airways or stuffy nose can make inhalation difficult and create a vacuum in the throat leading to snoring.
• The way a person is built: A person’s physiological make up can be a reason for snoring. For instance, Men have narrower air passage than women and are more likely to snore. Physical features like a narrower throat, a cleft palate, enlarged adenoids can contribute to snoring and these features are often hereditary.
• Medications: Certain medications such as tranquilisers like Lorazepam and Diazepam can increase muscle relaxation leading to snoring. These medications relax the tone of the muscles in the neck and chest making the work of breathing more difficult.
• Sleeping Disorders: Snoring could indicate a sleep disorder. Sleep Apnea is one of those disorders. It is a serious sleep disorder where your breathing is briefly interrupted many times each night and you experience breaks in your sleep, sometimes without realising it.
Even though quite a number of people snore, experts say that snoring is not normal. Snoring is a sign that something is wrong with the way we are breathing while we sleep. There are several options for treating snoring, but you first must have accepted that it is a problem, and then decide that it is worth the while treating.
• Change your sleep position: Changing your sleep position is an easy self-help step that you can take to help you stop snoring. Lying on your back makes the base of your tongue and soft palate collapse to the back of your throat, causing you to snore.
Lying on your side might help you correct that.
Daniel P. slaughter, MD, an otolaryngologist and snoring expert at Capital Otolaryngology in Austin, Texas, recommends a full length pillow that supports your entire body as this will enable you maintain sleeping on your side and can make a tangible difference.
You should also try to elevate your head by four inches as this may ease breathing and encourage your jaw and tongue to move forward.
If snoring continues regardless of the sleep position then it is advised that you see your doctor
• Lose weight: losing a little bit of weight can reduce the fatty tissues in the back of the throat, and decrease or even stop snoring. However, slaughter opines that weight loss does not work for everybody; after all, thin people snore too.
If you gained weight and started snoring, when you did not snore before then weight loss may help.
ü Practice good sleep hygiene: poor sleep habits also known as poor sleep hygiene can lead to snoring. For example, when you work long hours without enough sleep and you finally hit the sack, you would be over tired. This makes you sleep deep and hard and the muscles become floppier, which causes snoring.
• Avoid Alcohol and Sedatives; alcohol and sedatives reduce the resting tones of your muscles making if more likely for you to snore. Researches have shown that drinking alcohol four to five hours before sleeping makes snoring worse, and that people who did not snore before will snore after drinking alcohol.
• Open your nasal passage: If you snore from your nose, keeping your nasal passages open may help. If your nose is clogged or blocked due to cold or other blockages, fast- moving air is more likely to produce snoring. You can have a hot bath before going to bed and while you are having your bath, do not forget to rinse out your nose while you are at it.
Other things one can do to stop snoring include changing of ones pillow at least every six months to keep dust mites away, keeping ones bedroom air moist, what the food one eat before going to bed as heavy meals, dairy foods or soya milk have been shown by research to make snoring worse.
One can also try an anti-snoring mouth appliance.
Experts recommend exercise, as this can help reduce snoring even if it doesn’t lead to weight loss. When you tone various muscles in your body, you also tone the muscles in your throat, which in turn can lead to less snoring.
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