Table of Contents
- Snoring while sleeping
- This is how snoring occurs
- The simplest tips against snoring
- Please don't wake me up
Snoring while sleeping
Basically, snoring (med. rhonchopathy) describes the obstruction of the upper respiratory and airways, which manifests itself in noisy and labored breathing during sleep. This makes sleeping through the night more difficult and disrupts the important deep sleep phases, which can result in daytime tiredness, headaches or concentration problems.
Almost every third German snores while sleeping, with men being affected a little more often at around 60% than women (40%). In principle, simple snoring is considered harmless as long as there are no complete pauses in breathing. In so-called sleep apnea, there are health-endangering breathing pauses, which are often accompanied by scarring. And even if snoring is rather harmless, it can have numerous negative effects on your own sleep and the night's sleep of your partner. And that in turn is of course also detrimental to our well-being and daily performance.
This is how snoring occurs
Disturbing snoring noises mainly occur in the upper respiratory tract when the air encounters resistance when breathing and we have to exhale and inhale more. The air then flows through the pharynx with increased pressure and causes the soft tissue (such as the tongue, soft palate or uvula) to vibrate audibly - we snore.
Especially during sleep, our entire body musculature relaxes, which means that the pharynx is already fundamentally narrowed. Various factors then represent an additional blockage of the airways and promote snoring. Colds, hay fever, smoking, polyps, a large tongue or enlarged tonsils, but also the wrong sleeping posture or swelling of the pharyngeal mucosa have a negative effect on breathing and increase the risk of snoring.
Here you will find simple & helpful tips against snoring so that your airways remain free and you can get a restful sleep.
The simplest tips against snoring
#1 Choose the right sleeping position
The supine position is known to trigger or increase nighttime snoring. In this sleeping position, the lower jaw falls slightly due to gravity, the tongue slips back into the throat and narrows the airway. Changing to the side position can quickly help to ease breathing and stop snoring. You can find out more about the advantages and disadvantages of different sleeping positions here.
In order to get better air, it can also be helpful to position the upper body a little higher with the help of a firm pillow or a special "anti-snoring pillow". Specially shaped pillows such as the smart® SILENCE PILLOW ensure optimal positioning of the head during sleep, making it easier to breathe at night.
#2 Keep your airways and nose clear
A stuffy nose means that we have to breathe in and out with increased pressure, or we have to give up nasal breathing altogether and breathe through the mouth. The mouth is open and the tongue is pulled more easily into the pharynx. Especially during a cold, hay fever or a dry room climate, the mucous membranes of the nose are severely irritated, swell and narrow the airways. Therefore, try to clean your nose regularly and keep the mucous membranes moist.
#3 Watch your diet before bedtime
In order to get a good night's sleep, you should eat light food in the evening, because a very full stomach pushes the diaphragm and lungs up and impedes the flow of air in the body. And certain foods and nutrients can also affect sleep patterns or help to improve breathing and prevent heavy snoring. Peppermint or olive oil, honey or cardamom have an anti-inflammatory and antibacterial effect on the mucous membranes and help to reduce swelling and keep the airways free.
#4 Avoid alcohol and nicotine
Alcohol has a negative effect on sleep and snoring and should be taboo 2-3 hours before sleep. It relaxes the muscles, thus encouraging the tongue to fall back into the throat and disturbing the quality of sleep due to the breakdown products produced. Smoking should also be avoided, as inhaling the harmful substances irritates and swells the mucous membranes, impairing breathing.
#5 Remember good sleep hygiene
Good sleep hygiene and a regular sleep-wake cycle are crucial for restful sleep. Therefore, make sure that the temperature in your bedroom is rather cool (16 - 18 degrees) and that the room is sufficiently ventilated to avoid dry air and irritation of the mucous membranes in the respiratory tract.
#5 Maintain a healthy lifestyle
A healthy lifestyle with a balanced diet and regular exercise supports not only general health but also peaceful and restful sleep. Being overweight, on the other hand, is a common trigger for nighttime snoring because it causes the diaphragm to rise and prevents the lungs from expanding, which makes breathing weaker and promotes snoring
Please don't wake me up
Even if it provides a brief moment of silence, you should refrain from waking up a snoring person at night. Those who snore primarily do so when falling asleep and lightly sleeping, while the difficulty in breathing decreases again during the deep sleep phases. If we are repeatedly torn from sleep, it is difficult for us to reach the deep sleep phases that are important for our recovery and we always fall back into a light sleep. This not only significantly reduces the quality of sleep, but actually encourages snoring.
Snoring disturbs sleep and regeneration and has numerous side effects such as problems sleeping through the night, daytime tiredness or headaches
Snoring noises occur when the airways are narrowed and the air pressure causes the relaxed throat tissue to vibrate
The best sleeping position for snorers is on their side, optionally with a raised upper body for easier breathing
Clean or rinse your nose regularly to prevent mouth breathing and keep your airways clear
Eat light, balanced meals in the evening and use anti-inflammatory, antibacterial foods such as olive oil, honey or cardamom to soothe the mucous membranes in the throat
Abstain from alcohol and nicotine at least 2 to 3 hours before bed
Think of good sleep hygiene and ensure a well-ventilated, rather cool sleeping environment
Maintain a healthy lifestyle Being overweight is one of the most common reasons for snoring and is also bad for your health
Don't wake up snorers, otherwise you will disturb their sleep and, on the contrary, encourage snoring
Greetings and see you soon!