How To Stop Snoring
HOW TO STOP SNORING from the didgeridoo to the snoring mouthpiece
According to the American Sleep Association, 50% of the US population suffers from some form of snoring. Many snorers make the mistake of thinking it’s just a normal part of life, so they go right on with restless nights, feeling helpless, and frustrating their bedmates.
Unfortunately, snoring can be the cause of very significant health issues, the most common being sleep apnea. The National Sleep Foundation reports that half of serious snorers also suffer from sleep apnea, which is when breathing completely stops during sleep.
When breathing stops, more deleterious problems can develop due to the lack of oxygen, including sudden gasping for air, increased risk of cardiovascular disease, and potential tissue damage to the lungs and other organs.
Cause of Snoring
Before trying to remedy the gnarly night time noise, it’s helpful to know why and how it occurs.
Anyone can imitate the sound a snorer makes. Go ahead, try it and pay special attention to what’s necessary to create that wife-waking vibration. There is a closure formed in the back of the throat -- this causes resistance -- the air makes its way through turbulently.
The same thing is going on in the depths of the snorer’s throat. Everyone’s neck and throat relax during sleep, but the snorer has a problem of abnormally weak throat muscles or too much weight (fat) in the neck, both of which can cause the relaxed upper airway to collapse too far, preventing air from getting freely through. Snoring results.
Age, sex, weight, neck position, and alcohol consumption are the primary risk factors for snoring. The older one is, the more likely he or she is to snore. Males have problems with snoring much more frequently than females and, not surprisingly, overweight people are more likely to snore than healthy individuals.
Treatment to Stop Snoring
Remedies range from the obvious -- losing weight and putting down the before-bedtime booze, to the not so obvious -- picking up the didgeridoo (an Australian wind instrument that strengthens the throat muscles), to the invasive -- surgery, to the easy -- side sleeping instead of back sleeping.
A medical device called the CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) has had a high success rate for many snorers -- according to a study found in the New England Journal of Medicine, it reduced sleep apnea events by 68%. The problem with CPAP is it involves wearing a mask and being hooked up to a tube. It’s just too uncomfortable for many snorers to continue use.
A practical device that many people have found a successful tool to stop snoring is the snoring mouthpiece.
A snoring mouthpiece works by adjusting the lower jaw forward. This causes the airway to open up, reducing air resistance, which helps to stop snoring. Many over-the-counter snoring mouthpieces can be a very inexpensive solution.
Dentists can make custom devices, but the cost (approximately $1600) makes it out of reach for some. However, some insurance companies may help cover the cost.
Figuring out how to stop snoring can be exhausting and involve a lot of trial and error, but there is a solution out there for anyone who’s willing to put in the effort.