If you snore, you’re not alone. It happens when air flows through your throat when you breathe in your sleep. This causes the relaxed tissues in your throat to vibrate and cause harsh, irritating snoring sounds.
Snoring may disrupt your sleep, or that of your partner. Even if it’s not bothering you too much, it’s not a condition to ignore. In fact, snoring may be a sign of a serious health condition, including:
- obstructive sleep apnea (blocked airways)
- an issue with the structure of your mouth, nose, or throat
- sleep deprivation.
In other cases, snoring may be caused simply by sleeping on your back or drinking alcohol too close to bedtime.
ALSO READ: Best Fruits For Good Healthy Glowing Skin
15 Remedies For How To Stop Snoring
1. Change Your Sleep Position
Lying on your back makes the base of your tongue and soft palate collapse to the back wall of your throat, causing a vibrating sound during sleep. Sleeping on your side may help prevent this.
“A body pillow (a full-length pillow that supports your entire body) provides an easy fix,” Slaughter says. “It enables you to maintain sleeping on your side and can make a dramatic difference.”
Taping tennis balls to the back of your pajamas can also stop you from sleeping on your back, Chokroverty says. “Or you can recline the bed with the head up and extended, which opens up nasal airway passages and may help prevent snoring. This may cause neck pain, however.” If snoring continues regardless of the sleep position, obstructive sleep apnea may be a cause. “See a doctor in this case,” Chokroverty says.
2. Use nasal strips or an external nasal dilator.
Stick-on nasal strips can be placed on the bridge of the nose to help increase the space in the nasal passage. This can make your breathing more effective and reduce or eliminate your snoring.
You could also try a nasal dilator, which is a stiffened adhesive strip that’s applied on top of the nose across the nostrils. This can decrease airflow resistance, making it easier to breath.
Try nasal strips to help reduce snoring.
3. Avoid Alcohol
Alcohol and sedatives reduce the resting tone of the muscles in the back of your throat, making it more likely you’ll snore. “Drinking alcohol four to five hours before sleeping makes snoring worse,” Chokroverty says. “People who don’t normally snore will snore after drinking alcohol.”
4. Practice Good Sleep Hygiene
Poor sleep habits (also known as poor sleep “hygiene”) can have an effect similar to that of drinking alcohol, Slaughter says. Working long hours without enough sleep, for example, means when you finally hit the sack you’re overtired. “You sleep hard and deep, and the muscles become floppier, which creates snoring,” Slaughter says.
5. Lose Weight
Weight loss helps some people but not everyone. “Thin people snore, too,” Slaughter says.
If you’ve gained weight and started snoring and did not snore before you gained weight, weight loss may help. “If you gain weight around your neck, it squeezes the internal diameter of the throat, making it more likely to collapse during sleep, triggering snoring,” Slaughter says.
6. Avoid taking sedatives before bed
If you snore and take sedatives, talk to your doctor to see what your options are. Stopping sedative use before bed may ease your snoring.
7. Avoid other drugs before bed
Besides alcohol, other drugs can cause snoring or have other side effects that negatively impact the quality of your sleep.
One such example is sedatives and some prescription sleeping pills. Like alcohol, these relax your body, including your mouth and throat muscles, leading to snoring.
8. Take a warm bath or shower before bed
The water’s heat will open up your airways, and as it evaporates off your skin, the temperature decrease will signal to your brain that it’s time for sleep.
Similarly, humidifiers can reintroduce moisture to your bedroom, reducing congestion and making it easier to breathe at night.
9. Stop smoking
Smoking is an unhealthy habit that can worsen your snoring. Talk to your doctor about therapies — such as gum or patches — that can help you quit.
10. Get enough sleep
Make sure you get the recommended seven to eight hours of sleep you need each night.
11. Wear palatal implants
Also called the “pillar procedure,” this treatment involves injecting braided strands of polyester filament into your mouth’s soft palate. This stiffens it to reduce snoring.
12. Change your pajamas
If the idea of anti-snoring pillows surprised you, you’ll love this: you can buy anti-snoring pajamas and accessories, too.
These often have a tennis ball or a similar item sewn inside that fits between your shoulder blades. Alternately, you can wear an inflatable belt to create the same effect. The idea is that the tennis ball or air from the belt causes discomfort that rolls you onto your side while you sleep.
13. Treat your allergies
Anyone living with allergies knows what it’s like to have a stuffy nose. Stuffy noses, whether from a temporary illness or chronic allergies, can lead to snoring.
Do what you can to treat underlying allergies to clear up your nose. Invest in a HEPA air filter. Wash your sheets and vacuum regularly. Keep pets out of your bed.
14. Try aromatherapy
Many aromatherapy practitioners appreciate aromatherapy for its therapeutic benefits. Good smells make us feel great, but certain essential oils can open up your throat and reduce inflammation from allergies or sickness.
Gently rub a few drops of peppermint or eucalyptus oil on the bottom or inside of your nose before bed, or use steam inhalation.
15. Open up your nose
Like aromatherapy steam inhalation, neti pots also loosen up mucus and clear the nasal passages.
You can also place a nasal strip on the outside of your nose. These help open up your nostrils and increase airflow. Nasal vents do the same by being placed within your nostrils.
If all else fails…
If none of the above tips alleviate your snoring, it’s possible your snoring is a symptom of a more serious health condition. Talk to your doctor. They may diagnose you with sleep apnea or refer you to a sleep clinic for further analysis.