Everybody snores occasionally. When you have a cold, suffer from seasonal allergies, or if you are pregnant, snoring can be a mild, temporary discomfort that will remedy itself over time. However, for the percentage of the population who suffer from severe snoring, it can be an embarrassing and inconvenient problem, which can also have dire consequences for your health.
Snoring is caused by an obstructed airway which disrupts sleeping and breathing patterns. In some cases, snoring can indicate more dangerous health problems, such as sleep apnea, which can lead to hypertension and heart disease. Snoring can also have negative effects on someone you share a sleeping space with, as your snoring also disrupts their sleep causing fatigue and irritability.
While there are many effective anti-snoring devices available, your snoring may be mild enough that you don’t require these types of interventions. In this case, some of the best natural ways to remedy snoring can be found in your home.
Tennis Ball in the Back of the Shirt
Snoring is caused by restricted airways, and often this is due to the position of your relaxed throat muscles when you sleep. So, an effective way to redirect the airflow is to change your sleeping position. One of the most effective positions to open your airway is to sleep on your side.
Unfortunately, most sleepers frequently toss and turn during the night, which makes maintaining a comfortable sleeping position difficult. This is even more pronounced in snorers who have more disrupted sleep patterns.
To best maintain a stable side sleeping position, an unusual but effective method is to use a tennis ball. Sew a small pocket into the back of your pajama shirt and slip the tennis ball inside. This prevents you from sleeping on your back.
Raise the Head of Your Bed
Another method to change your sleeping position is to sleep with your head higher than the rest of your body. This is particularly effective for snorers with nasal obstruction by preventing soft nasal tissue from blocking your airway. However, sleeping with extra pillows can cause the opposite effect and exacerbate your snoring. Also, this can cause neck and back problems.
An alternative way to raise your sleeping position is to raise the head of your bed. There are many ways that you can achieve this. You can use phone books or blocks cut from two-by-fours. Just make sure that they are placed evenly and securely on both sides of the bed, and not at too sharp an angle.
Choose the Right Pillow
Aside from changing the position of your head and neck while your sleep, the right pillows can also contribute to less congested airways if they are made from natural, hypoallergenic materials. Natural bedding and pillows can help reduce snoring in people that suffer from seasonal allergies or allergies brought on by dust particles found in the home.
The most effective materials are latex or microfiber, where the weave is too tight for dust mites or allergens to get through. You should also wash or change your pillows frequently to avoid a build-up of dust, skin particles, and other irritants.
Dry air in your home can dry out the membranes in your nasal passages which can cause them to become blocked. It can also dry out your throat which intensifies the vibrations that cause the sound of your snoring.
To remedy this, try investing in a humidifier for your bedroom. Or, alternatively, you can place a bowl of boiling water under your bed during winter.
In addition to using your humidifier, adding a few drops of essential oils to the humidifier or in a diffuser can help relieve mild nasal congestion. The most suitable essential oils to naturally remedy snoring are eucalyptus, tea tree, or mint. You can also combine the essential oils with a carrier oil, such as almond or coconut oil, and rub the mixture into your chest before you sleep.
Limit Alcohol or Medications Before Bedtime
Alcohol and some medications relax the muscles around your throat, causing them to partially collapse during the night causing you to snore. Alcohol affects your snoring in other ways indirectly, such as contributing to poor sleep quality and restricting breathing. Limiting alcohol just before bed and opting to have a drink with lunch or in the early afternoon is a better option for snorers.
Yoga breathing exercises, also known as Pranayama, help to improve the flow of oxygen around the body by encouraging control of your breathing. These techniques can improve deep breathing during the night, and strengthen the lungs and throat muscles to help keep your airways open during the night.
There are a lot of factors that contribute to snoring. Fortunately, many of these causes can be treated easily and naturally if the snoring isn’t too severe. In fact, a combination of some of the above suggestions would be an even more effective method to remedy your snoring. However, if your snoring persists, it is recommended you visit your health care practitioner or try an anti-snoring device.