How To Stop Snoring and Start Getting Quality Sleep
Understanding Snoring So You Can Get More Sleep
We’ve all been caught snoring or had fun teasing someone we love about their snoring. It can be incredibly funny, especially when you’re on the end doing the teasing, and occasional snoring is completely normal. If you’re snoring frequently, though, it can get in the way of sleep for both you and your partner. Getting enough sleep is incredibly important for our mental and physical health, so not getting enough of it—especially if the snoring is going on long-term—can leave you feeling like you’re running yourself ragged. It’s easy to find yourself wondering if and how you can stop snoring.
The answer to this question requires you to understand what causes snoring first, as that can help you determine the best way to stop snoring. Thankfully, there are many options when it comes to figuring out how to stop snoring. There’s even a method that your dentist may be able to help you with. We understand just how important sleep is for your overall health, so we’ve put together a guide to help you learn more about snoring, how to stop it, and what snoring remedies are out there.
Why do people snore?
Snoring has many potential causes, but the common element among them all is that they narrow or obstruct your airway in some way. Examples include a deviated septum, enlarged tonsils, obesity, and chronic congestion. Another major cause of snoring, which the other causes can also play into, is sleep apnea.
Sleep apnea is a serious condition where you stop breathing periodically throughout the night—generally at least five times an hour. Obstructive sleep apnea, the most common type of sleep apnea, is often caused by the muscles in your throat or tongue relaxing too much when you fall asleep and collapsing or falling back to block your airway. This can cause snoring or gasping and requires your body to rouse you from sleep enough to resume breathing. You might not remember waking up, but it still disrupts your sleep cycle, which can leave you feeling exhausted no matter how much you sleep.
Not everyone who snores has sleep apnea, but snoring is one of the major warning signs of the condition. If you snore frequently and are experiencing other sleep apnea symptoms, such as daytime fatigue, frequent headaches, or sore throat, it’s a good idea to visit a sleep specialist to see if you’re suffering from sleep apnea. Diagnosis is an essential step toward keeping you healthy and helping you feel well rested again!
Why are CPAP machines often thought to be “the” sleep apnea remedy?
The biggest reason that many people view CPAP machines as the gold standard of sleep apnea treatment is simply that they work for all severity levels. No matter how severe your case is, a CPAP machine is a reliable way to treat it. The machine works by blowing a steady stream of pressurized air into your airway to keep it open. This ensures that you continue breathing easily throughout the night so that you wake up feeling rested. This reliability, paired with the fact that they have been the main way to treat sleep apnea for decades, makes them the most well-known sleep apnea treatment for many patients.
Why do people prefer to avoid a CPAP if at all possible?
Despite the reliability and proven results of CPAP machines, most people prefer to avoid using one whenever possible. There are a lot of reasons for this, most of which boil down to comfort and convenience.
CPAP machines require you to wear a mask that’s attached to the main body of the machine by a tube. The mask, its straps, and the attached tube can be uncomfortable to sleep with, causing many patients to feel trapped or anxious. The mask and its tubing also limit what positions you can sleep in, contributing even more to the difficulty patients have getting comfortable or falling asleep while using the machine. Additionally, CPAP machines require regular maintenance and are difficult to travel with, so if you travel often, you may have to spring for a travel-sized CPAP machine.
What other snoring remedies are out there?
While the truth is that some people with more serious cases of sleep apnea will need more intervention using a CPAP, there are several alternative snoring remedies you can try if you have mild to moderate sleep apnea. Some of these snoring remedies are incredibly simple, such as taking efforts to relieve congestion and changing the position you’re sleeping in.
Sleeping on your back, for example, increases the likelihood that your airway will close in the night, so raising the head of your bed slightly or shifting onto your side instead can be a big help. Some people even sew a tennis ball to the back of their pajama shirts to prevent themselves from rolling over onto their backs in the night! Losing weight isn’t easy or even necessary for everyone with sleep apnea, but if you’re a little overweight, working toward a healthier weight can reduce the severity of your sleep apnea.
If you need a little more help than this, though, one of the best snoring remedies out there is a nighttime dental appliance that helps position your tongue or jaw in a way that will keep your airway open throughout the night. Each of these appliances is custom-made for you by your dentist, allowing them to fabricate the best possible fit. Your dentist will also design with comfort in mind so that sleeping with your snoring appliance is easy. Without tubing to worry about, you can even sleep in whatever position you want!
The nightguards are also low-maintenance and incredibly easy to travel with, both of which are major benefits to many people. With benefits like these, it’s no wonder that so many patients prefer snoring appliances over CPAP machines whenever possible!
Get the quality rest you deserve.
Snoring and sleep apnea can be disruptive to your rest and even your health. If you’re wondering how to stop snoring, the good news is that there are more solutions available to you than ever! These snoring solutions can help you—and your partner—get quality rest again, which can be truly life-changing. If you’d like to learn more about snoring appliances, whether one would be a good fit for you, or how to begin the process of getting one, don’t hesitate to schedule a consultation with Dr. Hite at Hite Family Dentistry in Edwardsville at any time!