Snoring is one of those things that you don’t know you do until you find yourself living in close quarters with someone else. You could go for years not knowing how bad a snorer you may be until the day your partner your midnight sleep opera.
You could be on the other side of things as well, being the one shoving your head into a pillow and desperately trying to get some rest while the race car engine beside sleeps like a rock.
So, what can you do in this situation? Is there any way to actually get some silent sleep?
That’s a joke; of course there are ways to stop snoring. Not all of them may work, but there are enough where you’ll be able to find something that works for the concert speaker lying in your bed.
So, here’s how to stop someone from snoring.
What Causes Snoring?
A number of things, actually, but the actual snoring part is as simple as simple gets: snoring happens when air flows into your throat when you breathe as you sleep. The tissues in your throat, which are now relaxed, begin to vibrate, which causes the snoring sounds you and I are all-too familiar with.
Some causes of snoring are benign, while others have some cause for concern. Nevertheless, here are the most common causes of snoring:
- Drinking alcohol right before bedtime
- Sleeping on your back
- A structural issue with your mouth/nose/throat
- Obstructive sleep apnea
- Sleep deprivation
A side note: according to WebMD, around 75% of people who snore have obstructive sleep apnea (OBS), which is when your body stops breathing for short periods while you’re asleep. That raises the risk of heart disease. I just thought it’d be good for you to know.
Now, here are some ways to actually get some soundless sleep.
Changing Sleeping Position
Yup, you heard that right. Sometimes it’s just as simple as sleeping on your side.
When you sleep on your back, your tongue can move back as well and partially block airflow. If the snorer finds sleeping on their side to be uncomfortable, it might be due to how they or their pillow is positioned. Either way, have them give it a try. It might just be what fixes it.
Get More Sleep
Sometimes they just need more sleep. If someone works long hours without enough sleep, they’re going to be overtired. This makes them sleep harder and deeper, and thus the muscles loosen more, and that’s when the snoring begins. 7-9 hours is the sweet spot, people. The snorer needs to get their rest, not only for the snoring bit, but for their physical and mental health.
Limit Alcohol Usage Before Bed
I know, I know, I’m a spoil sport, but it’s true. It’s said that if one is to drink alcohol at least 3 hours before they sleep, it can cause snoring. This is purely from alcohol relaxing their throat muscles up to a point where they vibrate as the snorer inhales. So, at the very least, try to limit alcohol usage, but it’s not just for snoring. Alcohol can disrupt sleep in general, which just isn’t fun for anyone.
When someone is dehydrated, the secretions in their nasal passages can become stickier, and that may lead to an increase in snoring. Now, sometimes it’s just inevitable when someone is sick, but this is just in general.
Make sure you or whomever is doing the snoring gets the water they need. The standard is 11 cups for women and 16 cups for men.
Maintain a Moderate Weight
When one is obese, they have an excess amount of tissue surrounding their throat. When this is the case, snoring becomes more of a likely issue.
Maintaining a moderate weight is relatively simple, as it involves reducing your caloric intake and eating foods that are more rich in nutrients, as well as a small bit of exercise every day, and you can use dietary fat loss supplements to help as well. Not to mention, maintaining a moderate rate is good for your overall health as well.
Resist Taking Sedatives
This is for the same reason I said to get some more sleep. Sedatives cause the taker to sleep harder and deeper, and when that happens, the throat tissue relaxes more, allowing them to more easily vibrate and make sound. If sedatives are the culprit, perhaps other ways of getting sleep are better suited. Tea might help, as well as a sound machine to fall asleep to. Some people just need different things to help them sleep, and it doesn’t have to be sedatives.
Try Nasal Strips or a Nasal Dilator
Many people find nasal dilation to be a fantastic way to stop their snoring, as it opens up the airways and allows for better airflow. If you’re wondering what can be used for nasal dilation, there are a couple products on the market.
Stick-on nasal strips are by far the most popular. You place them on the bridge of your nose, and in turn they widen the spade of your nasal passages.
There are also external and internal nasal dilators. External dilators come in the form of a stiff adhesive strip that one places on the nose across the nostrils, which decreases airflow resistance. Internal nasal dilators are placed inside one’s nose and yet still achieves the same function. It allows for one to breathe easier.
Sometimes snoring isn’t a sleep behavior problem. If you’re looking at all of these and you’re thinking to yourself “yup, yup, did that, done that, yep”, then you might be looking at an actual medical problem. I don’t mean anything major, but it might just be that the snorer had legitimate structural issues in the facial area or in their throat.
If the snorer believes that this may be a medical issue, they should bring it up with their doctor. They can discuss options and they can be recommended to the right doctor for them. Things can be worked out from there.
Managing Editor, With a background in health, holistic nutrition and science, Chloe has written for international publications including the Wall Street Journal and Green King.