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Sleep Awareness Behavior Exercise

Struggling With Snoring

3 weeks, 5 days ago

1879  0
Posted on Jun 25, 2024, 1 p.m.

Snoring is not just a problem for you, it is also a problem if it disrupts your partner’s sleep, or another household member’s sleep, or if it is a symptom of a more serious condition. Snoring can cause daytime sleepiness, fatigue, and difficulty concentrating, all of which can lead to other complications. Snoring can also be a sign of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), which is a condition that can increase the risk of stroke, heart attack, and high blood pressure. OSA can be fatal if left untreated. 

If you snore very loudly or often, or you are overly sleepy during the day you should consult with your doctor. Your physician may recommend a sleep study (polysomnography), or lifestyle changes such as losing weight, avoiding alcohol, treating nasal congestion, sleeping on your side, or using nasal strips. For some cases, physicians may recommend the use of a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine to deliver air pressure through a mask to help keep your upper airway open. 

Snoring happens when air can’t easily flow through your nose or mouth, Occasional or mild snoring typically isn’t a cause for concern, but chronic or loud snoring is often associated with sleep apnea and OSA. Sleep apnea is a condition that causes people to stop breathing periodically while they are sleeping, and it affects approximately 30 million Americans. Sleep apnea is linked to high blood pressure, heart disease, and sudden cardiac death. 

Reducing snoring

Many people can reduce or eliminate snoring by sleeping on their side, wearing a nasal strip, or using a mouthpiece. 

Strategically placing pillows around you to provide comfort can help keep your body and head in a side sleeping position. 

Weight loss, mouth exercises, quitting smoking, and avoiding alcohol can also help to reduce or eliminate snoring. 

Mouth exercises have been clinically shown to effectively reduce snoring. Exercises that tone the muscles in your throat and mouth can help to reduce snoring by preventing tissues in the throat from becoming floppy or fluttering when you sleep and improving breathing through your nose. They involve moving your tongue and parts of your mouth in ways that strengthen muscles in the tongue, soft palate, and throat. In one study, three months of oropharyngeal exercises led to a 59% reduction in snoring.

Additionally, some yoga poses and breathing exercises may help with snoring by strengthening the muscles in your throat and face. Some yoga poses help to widen the airways in the lungs, regulate the flow of oxygen, and open up the chest, throat and nasal cavities, thereby helping with snoring and sleep quality. 

When to see a doctor

Some people are not able to resolve snoring issues because of underlying medical conditions. These people often have other symptoms that accompany snoring such as gasping or choking while asleep, daytime tiredness, morning headaches, and feeling unrefreshed upon waking which could indicate obstructive sleep apnea

If you believe your snoring or your partner's snoring is a symptom of obstructive sleep apnea, please see a doctor. Receiving a diagnosis and treatment for this disorder can resolve or significantly reduce your snoring while relieving other symptoms.

As with anything you read on the internet, this article should not be construed as medical advice; please talk to your doctor or primary care provider before changing your wellness routine. This article is not intended to provide a medical diagnosis, recommendation, treatment, or endorsement. Additionally, it is not intended to malign any religion, ethic group, club, organization, company, individual, or anyone or anything. These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. 

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