Snoring might not be annoying for you personally, but if you’re in a relationship or you live in a house with thin walls then chances are that you’re annoying the f**k out of one or more people every single night.
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Not only is it a burden having to carry around the guilt of being a loud sleeper, but according to a new study from Harvard University, difficulty breathing actually speeds up memory decline for those who are at risk of Alzheimer’s. You might not be worried about that now, but the future you will thank the now you if you nip it in the bud before it’s too late. Plus it might prevent your boyfriend/girlfriend from killing you in the process.
So here are some tips on how to beat the midnight rumblings:
One of the biggest causes of snoring is being overweight, making noisy sleepers a symptom of an increasingly unhealthy population. “This excess weight often gathers around the throat which, even in small amounts, can contribute to restricting the airway,” says the Private Clinic at Harley Street’s Doctor Yves Kamami. If you’re looking for tips to banish your snoring, there’s never been a better time to start shifting pounds.
Pour decision making
Ever wonder why your partner claims your bed-ridden rumblings are much worse after a few pints? Dr Kamani explains alcohol is a relaxant, which causes the muscles in your throat to soften, creating an airway obstruction.
Booze may be out, but what about the accompanying curry? Forget it. “Eating spicy food could cause acid reflux, which could make your snoring worse,” says Kamani. The US Snoring Centre in Dallas found that acid reflux causes sinus problems, coughing and chest pains at night because acid and undigested food particles travel back up through the airway when lying down, causing blockages that create snoring problems. Turns out that night out with your mates isn’t going to wait until morning to take its toll on your body.
Back to back
Even sleeping on your back can cause your tongue to roll backwards, blocking your airway further. It’s the reason your partner is right to roll you onto your side.
Dust a minute
A blocked nasal passage may also be a product of your environment. We’re not talking hayfever, it’s your filthy room that’s to blame. “Dust can irritate the nasal passage, causing the body to create a barrier of mucus blocking it,” says Kamani. “When we are asleep our only option then is to breathe through our mouths, increasing the likelihood that we will snore.”
Preventions and cures
There are a couple of actions you can take to help minimise the amount of time spend snoring. Firstly, start winding down on the boozing after 6pm if you’re sleeping with your partner, as this gives the relaxant effect of the alcohol time to wear off.
Also, give up smoking – not only does it stop from mucus building up (gross), which makes breathing more difficult, but it also is way better for you in general. It’s a win-win situation.
Taking small steps can make a big difference. Change your sheets at least once a week and vacuum regularly to avoid clogging your nasal passage with dust. And finally, stack some pillows behind you to keep you sleeping on your side. Combine all these tips and you should be on your way to a sound-free sleep.
Sweet dreams everyone.
VIA Men’s Health
While we’re on the topic of sleep, check out our six-step guide to having a lucid dream.