Snoring occurs when there is obstructed air entry into the air passages. This can occur due to blocked nostrils, hypertrophied tongue & palate, elongated tongue and uvula. Snoring is extremely irritating and disturbing not only for the person who is suffering from it but also for their bed partners. Snorers get very poor quality sleep and do not feel refreshed when they wake up that is why they feel fatigued all day long with generalized body aches and pains. They suffer from excessive daytime sleepiness, lack of attention, poor concentration and below par performance at work.
Here are 10 practicable interventions to address this apparently benign but extremely annoying condition.
1. Change Sleeping Position:
Sleeping on your stomach or sleeping supine can aggravate the obstruction of air entry into airways resulting in increase in snoring. Side lying while sleeping is most comfortable position to avoid snoring.
2. Change Bedding:
Uncomfortable bedding causes disturbed sleep leading to snoring. A mattress that accommodates your body contours and does not put undue pressure on prominent body parts is good for a good nighttime’s sleep. Pillow should be of such size and texture that it is comfortable to rest your head and neck on it and your head is neither too much elevated from rest of the body nor it is very low as compared to rest of the body.
Cleaning/replacement of bedding including pillow, sheets and mattress is as essential as anything else because allergens such as dust and dust mites accumulate on your bedding and cause stuffy blocked nose precipitating snoring.
3. Adopt Good Healthy Habits:
Maintain adequate hydration to keep the secretions in nose and throat in free flowing fluid state as in case of poor hydration these secretions become sticky and cause blockage of nose and snoring. For optimum hydration women should take three liters of fluids in a day while men should take 4 liters of fluids a day.
Do regular exercise during the day and watch your diet and calories to shed extra weight. Avoid tobacco, caffeinated drinks and alcohol especially during few hours preceding your sleep time.
Clear your nasal passages especially before going to bed. A warm shower before going to bed is of immense help to clear and keep opened the nasal passages. Rinsing your nostrils with saline is of extra advantage in keeping the nostrils clean.
4. Shed Bad Unhealthy Habits:
Give up your sedentary lifestyle and move around more than you sit around. Be very meticulous about what you eat and do not take fattening foods including soft and hard drinks and processed foods containing refined sugars that are loaded with empty calories. Bad habits like smoking and drinking are damaging to your health in various ways including disturbed sleep.
5. Observe Sleep Hygiene:
In short sleep hygiene is to control, change and stop those factors that are disturbing your sleep and adopt and encourage those factors and habits that facilitate a soothing sleep. One should get adequate sleep in side-sleeping posture. For more on sleep hygiene please follow this link.