What could be the reason behind snoring?
We all have been through the experience of sleeping by the side of a snorer. Yep, there is nothing worse than that. You can't sleep yourself that's one thing, you can't even hear yourself thinking. Now imagine having a partner who is a loud snorer, and imagine those who live in such a nightmare. You might think there's no escape, but think again.
First of all, you need to deeply understand the whole concept behind snoring, instead of just blaming the person for it. because honestly if it were a choice, nobody would do it on purpose. So what is the reason behind snoring really? Let's find out.
The medical science behind snoring
Like any other sound, snoring is also due to vibrations. Just like when we speak, our vocal cords vibrate, when our stomach makes noises, it's our intestines that vibrate. Similarly, when sleeping, the throat, palate (roof of the mouth) and the tissues around them come in contact and vibrate. People who have short necks and an obese body might be more susceptible to snoring. This happens because the air passage in these people becomes narrow, the air then passes with speed and hence, more vibrations.
Is snoring common?
Anyone can be a snorer, even little children but children snoring is not really a good sign. Apart from large and bulky people snoring, even thin and lean people can develop snoring, if sleeping deeply after a long tiring day, or they have some other medical condition like enlarged tonsils, etc. In general, as people get older and as they gain weight, the snoring tends to get worse.
How Snoring affects Physical and Mental Health
Even though snoring is a natural body process, it still causes lots of problems in life, both physical and mental. They need to be kept in check and not ignored if getting worse.
Snoring affecting your partner
The person who snores is the one who suffers the most in the process. If you have a snoring partner, you might need to pay some attention to their health. Normal and slight snoring can be ignored, but not the pathological one. Just for a quick rundown, here are some of the main problems to be aware of.
1. Obstructive Sleep Apnea
This is the most common condition associated with snoring. This is when your partner suddenly wakes up from their sleep while snoring because they cannot breathe properly. Snoring here presents as a warning sign that the person is not getting enough air, so the body wakes them up as caution.
If aggressive snoring persists, and the person keeps getting up in the middle of the night, this might become a habit and eventually, the person will not sleep at all. The snorer is also aware of the people around them this makes it even harder to fall asleep, out of care. So don't pressurize them about this issue, it's not their fault.
The snoring and the constant sleep disturbances cause overall tiredness in the body and fatigue. You might see your partner dozing off during the day, or having difficulty concentrating on their work. This is all connected and happens when the snoring becomes pathological.
Effects of Snoring to You
Sleeping with a snoring partner can be a menace. There are a lot of mental and physical health hazards that can be affecting you, with or without your knowledge.
4. Stressful morning
The moment you wake up after a disturbed sleep, you can feel the tiredness and you realize that moment it's going to be a lazy and not so fresh day. Your whole routine gets compromised and you feel like you can't get any work done today.
5. Cardiovascular diseases
It seems quite unlikely? No, it's all connected. When you keep getting at night because of your partner's loud snoring, this is due to a rise in your blood pressure and heart rate. Your brain wakes you up by releasing certain hormones. When this habit persists, the heart's electrical activity gets disturbed and the blood vessels lose their elasticity, leading to hypertension and even heart failure or stroke.
6. Irritability and loss of focus
According to research from the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, a person with sleep interruption will never feel fresh and active. The whole mood is ruined the next day and this makes them a little cranky and annoyed all the time. Also, you can't even focus on your work, even daily chores seem like a challenge. All you need is a proper sleep to function well in the day.
10 ways to handle a snoring partner
Here's a short course to help you out with your snoring partner:
1. Change the sleeping position
Medically speaking, this is the first and foremost thing you have to do to stop snoring is adopt a proper sleeping position. Lying on the back makes it worse as the tongue falls back and blocks the airway. Make your partner sleep on the side, this helps. Add a support pillow to maintain that posture if that works.
2. Help them lose weight
Only if your partner is on the bulky side, weight reduction will definitely prove fruitful. Especially the weight around the neck is to be focused. Get rid of that double chin and you'll get rid of snoring too.
3. Enough with the alcohol
If your partner is a habitual drinker, they will need to hold it back a little. Alcoholic drinks sedate your throat muscles and make you and your reflexes very slow. This enhances the snoring.
4. Good sleep hygiene
6-8 hours of sleep are ideal if you a tough working life. Make sure your partner doesn't stay up too late or spend most of the day in hectic work. When the body becomes too tired, you sleep deep and hard, the muscles become floppier and snoring begins.
5. De-congest the nose
Often people find it hard to breathe properly through the nose, one might ignore such an issue and keep breathing through the mouth but keep an eye out for such things. The nose might be clogged or narrowed due to a cold or allergy without anyone knowing. Some steam and a hot shower before bed can surely help.
6. Clean sheets and pillow covers
If your partner feels stuffiness especially during the night but was fine during the day, then it might mean there is some sort of allergen in the room or the pillow or the sheets. Maybe your partner is more sensitive to allergies than you, stuffiness can cause snoring so maybe it's time to clean the bed inside out.
7. Stay hydrated
Offer your partner a nice warm cup of green tea or anything that soothes their palate. Tell them to stay as much hydrated as possible. This is so that the throat and nose doesn't get dry and stickier making your partner snore.
8. Mouth guard
There are some medical devices specially designed for snoring purposes, they keep the tongue pulled outwards so that it doesn't fall back and block the throat. You can easily find such mouth guards and devices by consulting the doctor.
9. Nasal strips and dilators
Easily available in the market, these little strips work like magic. Just put them on your partner's nose and enjoy a good night's sleep, snore-free. The nasal strips and nasal dilators make space in the nose and nasal passages for air to freely pass through.
10. CPAP machine and Surgery
These two mesial remedies are best-proven methods to stop snoring. CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) device helps create positive air pressure in your air passage and help you sleep peacefully. The surgical option is called 'Uvulopalatopharyngoplasty' which can be done with laser nowadays too. This helps to tighten the throat structures and reduce snoring.
Healthy Sleeping Rituals to Adopt
Here are some medically and psychologically proven ways to improve your sleep. These healthy sleeping habits will prove to be revolutionary for your day-to-day activities. Also, these will help both you and your partner spend peaceful nights and wake up fresh.
Light evening exercises
It's common sense that the more you're tired during the day, the sleepier you'll get at sleep time. So instead of just sitting in front of the TV, lounging on your couch, get up, take your partner and go for an evening walk, or maybe try the treadmill for a change, skipping helps too.
Say no to heavy dinners
Try not to eat a few hours before bedtime and overall keep your dinners very light. You can also try green tea or antioxidant drinks after meals to help in digestion so you sleep soundly without acidity and discomfort.
Keep your bed nice and tidy, frequently change the covers and an adding a little scent to the sheets and the room is very soothing. You're supposed to only go to our bed when you're about to sleep if you spend most of your day in bed, or you like to do your work, assignments sitting on the bed, then your body adapts to the casual bed environment, this also alters your sleep.
It sure is hard to cope up with someone who snores their way through the night. But always remember, it's nobody's fault. Instead of blaming someone, make sure their health is okay and try all necessary measures for them and yourself to get rid of this problem and have a peaceful night life.