Snoring occurs when a person produces a rumbling sound while sleeping usually due to improper breathing process. Am sure you know how snoring sounds like and how annoying it can be when your partner is affected by it. The basic reason why people snow is because the tissue in and around your upper airways vibrates during the act of breathing. The vibrations are the reasons for that rambling sound. It is not always one part of the body that causes the vibration – it can be a tongue, soft palate, tonsillar pillars, uvula or any other areas in the mouth or inside nose.
Why do People Snore?
The vibrations that results to snoring are caused by turbulent airflow through your narrowed airways. There are numerous things that affect snoring such as the stage of sleep, your sleeping position and the use of certain medications and alcohol.
Although snoring seems an obvious thing, it is important to note that nobody snore while he/she is awake. The reason behind this is that when you sleep, the muscles relax in the body, including those found in your neck and throat area. This relaxation narrows down the airways thereby making the space by which air passes through to be smaller and therefore snoring develops.
There are many reasons why people snore although these reason does not have strong evidence to support them. What we have discussed above is just a biological background on snoring, but is does not give facts why some people snore and others don’t.
Other sources reveal that snoring can be due to too much tissue in the throat and nasal areas. This is why increase in weight is usually connected to snoring. A number of people who never snored in their passed will start snoring when they add up weight. When you add on weight, this can add to the weight of your neck which presses down your throat while you sleep.
What causes snoring?
Genes have a major role in our physical and mental features. According to research findings, the first and major factor that is behind your snoring is maybe because you inherited that character from your biological parents. People can inherit breathing patterns as part of the physical traits acquired from parents, and that may increase the likelihood of your airways being obstructed and place you at a greater risk of sleep apnea and snoring.
Therefore, if your grandparents used to snore, be sure that it is the reason why you have the same problem. This usually takes into account inheritable features that can expose you to snore excessively. One of these features is reduced metabolism which may cause an increase in weight.
- Nasal congestion
Nasal congestion may occur due to allergies, sinus infections, and trauma to the nose and other illnesses that may cause your nostrils to block at some points throughout the year. Usually, mucus may block the airways or reduce the space where air should pass through while you breathe and therefore result into snoring. Snoring resulting from these conditions can be beaten by just finding ways in which you can treat these sicknesses.
Nasal congestion is a common condition and almost everybody has ever experienced it. Therefore, if your loved one has not been snoring before and just started recently after you realized him sneezing or having a runny nose, blame the common cold for his/her sounding like a loan Moore while sleeping. Nasal congestion can just be treated successfully at the comfort of your home with simple remedies such as the use of lemon ginger tea mixed with a tablespoon of honey.
- Sleeping position
Did you know your sleeping position could be the cause for your snore even if you don’t usually do it? Almost all sleeping positions you know have some benefits attached to them. Generally, when you sleep on your back it is considered to be the best sleeping position for the spine so that you will not experience neck and back pains when you wake up the next day. However, when it comes to snoring, this is the worst sleeping position. This is because sleeping on your back makes your muscles to relax and this causes your airways to collapse more easily.
If you want to notice this you may try tilting your head back to where it ends up nearly parallel to the ground and then relax your throat and make a few breaths. You will realize that in this position, it is a bit difficult to breathe without making a snoring noise. While you sleep on your back, the same effect may occur. When it comes to sleeping position, you can decrease snoring by sleeping on your side. However, this may not be as good to your neck and shoulders, but it may eliminate obstruction to your airways caused by sleeping on your back.
- Use of alcohol and some drugs
The use of alcohol is a popular habit and may people practice it. Research has found that going to sleep while you are drunk may increase snoring since it reduces the airway muscle tone and therefore making it easier for vocal vibrations to occur. Alcohol has same sedative effects that make it to be so good and eventually it causes people to snore. In fact, people who used not to snore may start snoring as they increasing their drinking habits.
However, alcohol is not the only drug that causes snoring, as narcotics and sedatives can as well reduce the muscle tone and therefore case snoring to occur. In such cases where snoring is caused by the use of certain drugs, you can eliminate the condition by quitting the use of the drug involved.
Smoking has an inflammatory effect to the airways and therefore it is not surprising to hear people who smoke snoring. Generally, increase in smoking may make the congestion in your nose to increase and therefore there will be greater obstruction to your breathing while you sleep.
Even secondhand smoke can be a reason for snoring. Research has found that people who are exposed to secondhand smoking are more likely to experience snoring and other respiratory conditions than those who are not exposed to any smoke. Furthermore, female smoker are more likely to be affected by snoring than male counter parts.
- Being overweight
Increase in weight will means that the whole body including the area around the neck has increased in fat content. This will make more pressure to be exerted in your throat hence reducing the airway. As you breathing, there will be vibration that will result from more force applied so that breathing process is successful and in that case snoring will occur.
You can reduce your weight by carrying out a bit of exercise and changing your eating habits and this may help reduce your snoring and improve your sleep quality.
- Sleep deprivation
This can as well be problematic when it comes to snoring. Just as alcohol, sleeping very short time at night may cause you to snore anytime you sleep thereafter. This is because; lower sleep amount causes loss of muscle tone in your air ways hence snoring breaks. This is very common with people who have hard day’s work and come home and immediately fall into a sleep.
The snoring itself can actually result into sleep deprivation. Therefore, to solve this you have to find the immediate reason why you snore and find solutions to clear it. Meanwhile you may try sleeping longer so that your snoring should not be connected to lack of enough sleep.
- Obstructive sleep apnea
This is a sleep disorder whereby something obstructs your airways. This is a condition that affects very many people across the world. Similar to the way snoring happens, it may as well occur because of some kind of airway being obstructed. The difference between snoring and OSA is that people with OSA experience obstructions to their airways that cause them to stop breathing for a few seconds. Due to this they then wake up to catch their breath before going back to sleep.
OSA is usually treated using CPAP which involves wearing a specific mask before going to sleep. This mask delivers air and keeps your airways from collapsing.
- Jaw features
It is believed that there are certain mouth features that can put you at a higher risk of snoring while you sleep. Some research findings have concluded that risk factors that increase the probability of snoring in children such as having a cross-bite or receding chin. Since the tongue can have a tendency to accidentally block the airway and result in snoring, some jaw and face features can result to the sagging of the tongue while sleeping and therefore result in this condition.
What Causes Snoring in Females
Snoring is a common condition and it can affect anyone regardless of sex or age. However, the condition is very common in men who have much weight. Other sources suggest that snoring may tend to increase with age. If you are a habitual snorer, you will not only cause sleeping problem to those around you, but you will also impair your own sleep quality. People who snore frequently should seek immediate medical assistance to get rid of this condition.
All factors that cause snoring in male can as well cause snoring in women equally. However, when it comes to smoking, women are said to be more affected than men.
During pregnancy, women experience the most symptoms including loss of breath during the night and snoring in some cases. About one in three pregnant women are affected by snoring while they sleep. Some women who don’t regularly snore usually come to realize they snore during pregnancy. There are a number of reasons why females snore during pregnancy:
- Excess gain in weight- during pregnancy, it is obvious that a woman will gain more weight than the usual. This will cause the neck size to increase and as we explained above, you will end up snoring at night.
- Nasal congestion- an increase in hormonal activities during pregnancy drives mucus production and this may cause the swelling of the airways.
How to Stop Snoring Immediately
Everybody wants a nice sleep and you will have a great morning if nobody complained that you caused them a sleepless night. There are numerous ways you can use to snoring problem immediately so that you have a nice sleep. Some of the ways to use may take long time but for you to solve your problem immediately, you will have to do the following:
- Prop yourself up in bed- if you realized that snoring denies you some sleep, add some extra pillows behind your head rather than sleeping flat on your back. This will prevent the tissue in the neck or throat from compressing your airways.
- Sleep on your side– as we said above, snoring is increased by sleeping on your back since it makes your muscles to relax and this causes your airways to collapse more easily. You may sleep on your side with your hands wrapped in a pillow to avoid shoulder pains as well. Also, while you sleep on your back, there are possibilities that your tongue and soft palate may rest against the back of your throat and therefore blocking the air passage.
- Take a decongestant or antihistamines for nasal congestion – as we have seen above, blocked nostril also results in snoring. If you have a cold, you may take some drugs to relieve your nasal congestion and if allergies are causing you to develop nasal congestions, antihistamines may help to bring relieve.
- Use a humidifier – dry air can be the cause of your snoring and therefore humidifier may help to vaporize the air around your environment so that your air passage is kept moist. Always clean the humidifier as per the manufacturer’s information regularly.
- Don’t eat heavy meals or drink alcohol before sleep – within three hours before sleep, do not eat heavily as this will contribute to snoring. Both may cause your throat muscles to relax more than normal.
How to Stop Snoring Naturally – Home Remedies that work
There are a number of home remedies that you can use to stop snoring so long as you know the reason behind your snoring. Stopping snoring naturally means that, the condition is solved at the comfort of your home without intervention of any medical treatment. Here are a number of ways to stop snoring naturally:
- Side sleeping
If your snoring is not caused by any serious condition, you may solve it by just changing your sleeping position. The main challenge may be maintaining your sleep on side positions. This sleeping position may help to prevent the relaxed and untoned muscles in your throat from blocking the breathing pathways.
- Peppermint oil and goldenseal
If you are easily affected by nasal and chest congestions, this may be the best remedy to stop you condition which eventually result in snoring. Peppermint oil is greatly used in solving sore throat and nasal congestion which in turn could be the reason why you have snoring condition.
Goldenseal on the other hand is a supplement that can help in dealing with chest and nasal passages congestion. It is found in powder, liquid or capsule.
- Spearmint and fenugreek
Usually, digestion plays an important role when it comes to our sleep patterns and it may be the reason why we snore. Fenugreek when mixed with spearmint can be amazing herbs that may help to cure snoring that result from digestive issues particularly indigestion due to acid problems.
- Reduce weight
Weight can be reduced by working out regularly and changing your eating habits. We found that people who are overweight tend to snore at night. This kind of snoring can be solved by carrying out activities that will help to reduce weight which include regular exercise and avoiding junky foods.
- Vitamin C
Sinuses may obstruct the air passage and therefore cause the mouth to open and your uvula, the fleshy extension at the back of the soft palate above the throat to vibrate while you breathe to cause snoring. Vitamin C will help to boost your immune system hence prevents this condition to occur. Just eat fruits that contain sinus-fighting bromelain such as papaya, pineapple, broccoli and many others.
- Eucalyptus and peppermint
Eucalyptus can help in dealing with chest problems. It can therefore help to provide snoring-free night. Put eucalyptus leaves in steam inhaler and breath it through your mouth and nose can help to clear the sinuses.
Snoring Medical Treatment
There are numerous snoring treatment devices that have been developed to prevent it such as special pillows, dental bites and chin straps. All these treatments are based on behavior modification and they do not physically correct the underlying condition. Your doctor will review your signs and symptoms and your medical history. Physical examination may also be conducted.
Treatment for snoring may include the following:
- Oral appliances– this include form-fitting dental mouthpieces that help advance the position of your jaw, soft palate and tongue to keep the airway open.
- Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) – this approach involves wearing a special mask over the nose or mouth while you sleep. This mask will direct pressurized air from a small pump to your nose to keep it open while you sleep.
- Upper airway surgery- there are numerous procedures that seek to open the upper air passages and prevent further narrowing during sleep such as trimming excess tissues from the throat, moving upper and lower jaws forward.