Snoring Remedies: Effective Ways to Stop Snoring

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Snoring is an increasing problem in many households and is a sign of sleep deprivation for the individual who snores and their family. It is also said to be associated with an increased risk of developing sleep apnea, which is a serious condition where a lack of breath leaving the lungs results in a temporary loss of consciousness and eventually a complete cessation of breathing. If this happens it can result in death. Research has shown that when people sleep next to someone who snores, the chances of having a relationship with that person reduced by 33% compared to those who did not sleep near a snorer. The study was conducted by a team of researchers from the University of Illinois' College of Medicine, including David Carbonell, assistant professor of psychology; John Emerson, associate professor of sleep disorders; and Yana Zoloth, research nurse at the National Institute on Aging. They presented their findings at a meeting held by the American Association for Sleep Medicine in Washington, DC. Their main findings included the finding that snoring is associated with high blood pressure in adults but only in very low doses. There was no significant association between snoring and high blood pressure in children or adolescents. Although the exact mechanisms responsible for snoring are not completely understood, a clear pattern has been established whereby snoring and sleep apnea are linked. The sleeping person pushes against the top of their breathing can, in turn, push against the uvula and trachea, impacting negatively on both these structures and ultimately the snoring individual. However, both of these associations appear to be caused by the vibration of the upper airway. For this reason, when you see someone snoring, even if it is a very loud snorer, you should not conclude that the individual is suffering from either sleep apnea or a cardio-related problem.

You might be one of the 45 percent of normal adults who snore on a regular basis, or you know someone who does. Snoring may be the punchline of family jokes (“Uncle Joe snores so loudly that he rattles the windows!”), but it’s a real problem.

For one thing, a snoring partner can prevent the other person from getting a decent night’s sleep, leading to the separation of bedrooms. “Snoring can cause serious problems in a marriage,” says Daniel P. Slaughter, MD, of Capital Otolaryngology in Austin, Texas, an otolaryngologist and snoring expert.

Snoring is not only annoying, but 75 percent of those who snore have obstructive sleep apnea (a condition in which breathing is interrupted during sleep for brief durations), which raises the risk of heart disease, according to Slaughter.

Sudhansu Chokroverty, MD, FRCP, FACP, program director for Clinical Neurophysiology and Sleep Medicine at JFK Medical Center in Edison, N.J., advises caution before self-treating with over-the-counter sprays and medications unless you’ve checked with your doctor. Chokroverty, a neurology professor at Seton Hall University’s School of Health and Medical Sciences, says, “Many stop-snoring products are sold without rigorous research to back their claims.”

Instead, try these natural remedies and lifestyle modifications to see if you can get rid of your snoring.

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