Put An End To Your Snoring

Written by Manny Erlich on August 2, 2012. Posted in Sleep Apnea Symptoms & Treatments, Snoring 101

Snoring may be a minor nuisance or a serious health risk or relationship breaker. In this article you will learn about some of the more common snoring causes and snoring rememdies.

Snoring may be as little as an occasional rumble to a consistent hair-raising thunder show. The cause, however, is always the same, according to Rochelle Goldberg, MD, President of the American Sleep Apnea Society: “tissue vibration as air forces through your airway.” In other words, snoring happens when air cannot flow freely through your airway when you sleep.

As you can see, snoring can be more than just a nuisance. It can be a symptom of a potentially serious condition and should be tended to.

Other Snoring Causes

An estimated forty-five percent of adults snore at least occasionally – that’s nearly one out of every two adults – and twenty-five percent snore regularly – that’s one of four adults.

Some common snoring causes include the following:

  • Allergies
  • Swollen tonsils and/or adenoids
  • Deviated nasal septum
  • Nasal polyps
  • A large palate or large tongue base
  • Poor muscle tone of the throat or tongue
  • Small jaw that falls back when you sleep
  • Some medications, such as pain killers and sleeping pills and alcohol may contribute to snoring by causing the tongue or throat muscles to relax when you sleep and block the airway.

Some Available Snoring Remedies and Treatments

So now you know some of the causes of snoring. Ruling out Sleep Apnea, the most effective of all snoring remedies is to improve airflow during sleep. If you suffer from allergies, you might want to consider nasal sprays or other over-the-counter products, such as saline sprays or gels to keep your nose clear. Room humidifiers may help keep the air in your room and in your airway moist. Avoid anything that might irritate your airway, such as smoking, and if you happen to be overweight, try to lose weight.

Sleeping on your side often helps to unblock the airway. To train yourself to sleep on your side, you might want to consider putting a tennis ball in a sock and sewing it to your pajamas between your shoulder blades, so that it will wake you up every time you roll over on your back.

Some oral devices, such as a soft palate, may help, but a custom made appliance fitted by a dentist is preferable as over-the-counter appliances have mediocre success.

Some snorers may require surgery to open the airway by shrinking the tissues of the soft palate, at the base of the tongue or nasal turbinate. Of course, surgery involves risk. It may affect voice tone. So, if you are an actor or singer, you might want to think very carefully before undergoing this type of surgery.

A new procedure that shows promise is the pillar procedure, which consists of inserting three short silicon rods into the small palate. The idea behind this procedure is to stabilize the palate so it doesn’t vibrate when air passes through it. This procedure takes about fifteen minutes and is performed under local anesthesia and is only minimally invasive. Some have reported that the pillar procedure is effective in up to 90 percent of cases.

You can read more articles on living with snoring or how to stop snoring by exloring our Snoring 101 section or exploring our most recent and most popular articles below.

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Manny Erlich

International Foundation of Employee Benefits - Certified Employee Benefits Specialist