Secrets to Stop Snoring
We’ve all snored at some point in our lives. But persistent snoring isn’t just a teeth-gritting nuisance to the victim on the other side of your bed. Nightly snores are a sign of something more—a signal that our bodies aren’t functioning quite right.
"When you are snoring, you're spending too much energy to breathe," says Dr. M. Safwan Badr, M.D., president of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine. "Snoring is like fever for a general internist -- it tells you something is going on, but it doesn't tell you what."
Snoring occurs because of narrowed airways, and chronic snoring can strain the heart, cause low oxygen levels in the blood, cause long breathing interruptions, worsen sleep, and can be the culprit that’s making you feel like the walking dead during the day. Months and years of chronic snoring can blossom into a whole host of problems that will potentially lead to long-term health effects.
With snoring being such a common occurrence (over 20 percent of the population saw logs and over 60 percent of males over 40 are regular snorers), it might be easy to write it off. But for your health’s sake and the sake of your partner’s rest, it’s time to get a handle on your nighttime noise. Here are a few dependable ways to cut snoring out of your life—for good.
Lose Some Weight
When you’re overweight, fatty tissues build up in the neck and throat, closing the gap in your airways and causing vibrations in your throat that rattle like gasps for air. Those that are overweight tend to snore more due to these excess fat deposits along airways, and it’s not just the neck that’s a cause for concern; abdomen fat will cause indirect airway compression. More males—especially those 40 and over—are prone to snoring because of their biological fat distribution.
Losing weight is said to be the most effective remedy to alleviate snoring. And to boot, exercise will help to strengthen muscles in the neck, curbing constriction and allowing air to pass through easier (there are even oropharyngeal exercises explicitly tailored to cut down the chances of snoring). Besides the obvious health benefits of shedding some pounds, losing weight—even just a few pounds—could be the key to more relaxed breathing at night.
Here’s a great calculator that’ll help you evaluate if you need to drop some weight. Give it a try!
Change Your Sleeping Position
Sleeping supine makes you much more predisposed to snoring. The reason? Gravity.
When you sleep on your back, your airway is prone to slight collapse due to gravitational force as well as the weight of your own body (the extra pounds from your chest or neck pressing down). This slight contortion to your airway creates less room for air to pass through, and can even lead to sleep apnea—which is a complete collapse of the airway. Another reason for position-induced snoring is the recession of your jaw, which further blocks your airway, as well as your tongue sliding back into your mouth when you’re lying on your back.
One of the most basic, quick-fix ways to open up your airways and reduce the probability of snoring is by rolling over. Sleeping on your side lets air flow more freely and alleviates compression.
If you have trouble sleeping on your side, there are a few tricks you can use to help get you there and keep you put. Try a new, more supportive pillow—or better yet, a positioning pillow. If all else fails, there’s an old and tested method that is quite compelling—sew a tennis ball into the front or back of a pajama shirt.
Your Mattress Affects Your Snoring
Sleeping on a soft mattress isn’t comfortable when it feels like quicksand. And while you may think that sinking into an extra-soft mattress will help you drift silently off to dreamland, the results are quite the opposite.
Firm mattresses are not only supportive, better for your neck and back, and quite comfortable; they also help to alleviate snoring. A firm mattress will help to put your head, neck, and back into better alignment, mitigating the contortion your body experiences when you sink into a too-soft bed.
If your mattress is too soft, there options in your midst that won’t break the bank. Mattresses like our Trinity Genesis Hybrid, stacked with dense gel memory foam, Avena foam, and 12 gauge pocketed coils, are an excellent investment for firm comfort to help rid your life of snores.
Watch What You’re Eating and Drinking
Last but not least, your diet could be a prime factor causing you to snore. Certain foods promote histamine secretion, which kicks mucus production and inflammation into overdrive. The more inflamed and full of phlegm your body is, the more apt you are to snore.
Foods to avoid:
Meat: Consuming the wrong type of meat is a phlegm-booster. When you can, choose grass-fed meat products that are antibiotic-free.
Dairy: Lactose makes mucus thicker and can cause excess inflammation in the body. Use sparingly to curb snoring.
Soy: Soy is one of the worst mucus-making foods out there. Steer clear of soy products if you’re a regular snorer.
Sugar: Many of our foods and beverages are piled high with mounds of refined sugar, causing elevated acidity in the body and increased mucus production.
Alcohol: Alcohol is a muscle relaxant. When certain muscles responsible for keeping our airways clear are too relaxed, they aren’t able to do their job. Enjoy responsibly, and ease back on your alcohol intake for more snore-free nights.
Trinity Sleep has over 30 years’ experience in the mattress industry and wants to help you rest better. For more effective breathability, cooling, and support, our gel memory foam beds also feature Avena Foam—a new, more durable foam that’s long-lasting, hypoallergenic, cooler, and more supportive than ever. Say goodbye to flimsy or sunken mattresses with one of Trinity Sleep’s HD support mattresses, shipped right to your home for easy unboxing.