Thirty-seven million Americans snore on a regular basis. But the habit doesn’t just affect the snorer. According to snoring divorce statistics, snoring is the third leading cause of divorce in the US behind infidelity and financial issues. Here are some tips for stopping your snore.
It’s the night-time noise that your bed partner dreads! Snoring can ruin a restful sleep for you and others.
“It’s estimated that anywhere between 25% and up to 50% of the US population snores on a regular basis,” said Dr. Ryan Soose, Otolaryngologist/Sleep Medicine at University of Pittsburgh Medical Center.
Snoring happens when muscles in your tongue, roof of your mouth, and throat relax and constrict airflow. The result is a vibration of tissues that creates noise. There are many possible causes, including allergies, the shape of your throat, weight gain, large tonsils or adenoids, or sometimes sleep apnea, a condition that causes pauses in breathing while you sleep.
“Even though there’s hundreds of treatments available, the vast majority are either unproven or ineffective,” Soose said.
So, what does help? Sleeping on your side. In one study, about half of snorers with sleep apnea were able to stop when they changed to this position.
Also, avoid alcohol as it can further relax muscles.
Losing weight decreases pressure on your windpipe and allows more air to pass.
Nasal dilator strips and an over-the-counter treatment called Theravent may also help some people. Theravent uses your own breathing to create gentle pressure that naturally opens nasal airways.
If snoring is severe, you should see a sleep specialist. A CPAP machine, mouthguard, or surgery might be better options for you.
If you’re not sure if you snore, try downloading an app, like Snorelab. It will record sounds and let you listen to them the next day.
By the way, about 40% of men habitually snore compared to 24% of women.