Pretty much most of you have a horror story when it comes to snoring. As a child, you likely have a grandpa, your own dad, or uncle who snored so loudly they basically become inside family jokes every time they sleep. Well, they may be funny but what we failed to realize is that snoring has its dangers too. And it is not just about your lost sleep because the loud snoring sound prevented you from drifting off to sleep once you hit the sack.
If you aren’t aware yet, a person snores because of the vibration caused by the air passing on a narrowed airway. It also happens to be the major indicator of obstructive sleep apnea. Not all snorers have sleep apnea, though. But still, the risk is there, especially once you find out that there are breathing pauses in your slumber if you have sleep apnea. For a few seconds, you cease to breathe as your brain decides whether to sleep or breathe and this is a constant occurrence with as many as 30 pauses over the span of an hour.
Conventional treatment involves surgery and the use of CPAP. However, many aren’t exactly thrilled at the thought of using CPAP and surgery isn’t as appealing either. Aside from popular anti-snoring gadgets such as mouthpieces like SnoreRx, simple lifestyle modifications can help improve your sleep and somehow reduce the snoring and its impact on your health.
Here are some exercises and tips to reduce snoring and help with sleep apnoea:
Make lifestyle changes – lose weight, exercise or brisk walk, maintain regular sleeping hours, quit drinking, smoking and avoid taking sleeping pills or sedatives of any kind.
Avoid caffeine and heavy meals two hours before sleeping.
Practice yoga to strengthen the muscles of the throat.
Try sleeping on the side. Elevate the head of the bed by four to six inches.
Singing can also strengthen throat muscles and reduce sleep apnoea
Press the tongue up against the roof of mouth and hold it there for 3 minutes a day
Purse the lips as if going to kiss and move them up and to the right, then up and to the left 10 times. Repeat again 3 times.
Gargle with water for five minutes, twice a day
Lightly hold the tongue in teeth and swallow five times. Repeat this 5 to 10 times a day.
If you don’t do anything about sleep apnea, it can predispose you to a number of medical conditions such as heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and depression as well as a list of accidents caused by chronic sleep deprivation. People with sleep apnea fail to enjoy a good night’s sleep, thus missing out on the many recuperative benefits a trip to dreamland offers.
And while you may hate the thought of sleeping in your youth, you start craving it more as you age when obligations pile up and you have less and less time for sleep when you actually need it the most. People would even go to great lengths and spend a lot of money just so they can sleep like a baby every single night.
“Sleep is the new status symbol,” she says.
It’s a big business. One of the more expensive products is Sleep Number’s 360 Smart Bed, which runs from $3,449 to $4,999. It makes adjustments based on how restless people are while they’re sleeping. The Zeeq pillow, which sells for $299 and is from bedding brand REM-Fit, monitors snoring and can gently vibrate to nudge someone into a different sleep position.
“I’m willing to spend more on sleep technology because it will hopefully help me fall asleep quicker, stay asleep longer and be more rested when I wake up,” says Frank Ribitch, a self-described gadget junkie from Martinez, California, who tracks his sleep with apps connected to a Sleep Number bed and the Zeeq pillow.
Before you can make lifestyle changes, you must first get yourself checked by a sleep specialist to get a proper sleep apnea diagnosis. As you explore your management options, make a few changes to the way you do things, eat, or engage in healthy activities that can reduce the occurrence of snoring. They are often free, so there is no reason for you to keep on suffering from chronic sleeplessness.
It actually has become a big business now. The sleep industry sells all sort of products. From mouthpieces, earplugs, chin straps, mobile apps, specialized pillows, and mattress, etc. they range in prices from affordable to ludicrously expensive. Yet, the thing is, they have a market for it since many people buy them. For some, their sleep is more important that they are willing to pay for these anti-snoring gadgets regardless of the price.
You just have to do your research because with the countless options out there, looking for an effective and reasonably priced device is like finding a needle in a haystack. And once you do find it, you’ll finally be able to curb your snoring and save your sanity for real.