By Odunewu Segun
Snoring can put great strain on relationships. A snoring problem often creates not only tiredness but also frustration and resentment between couples. It can interfere with sexual and emotional intimacy, and can push couples to sleep in separate bedrooms.
It’s no surprise that snoring often sends couples to separate bedrooms in search of undisturbed rest. Some couples may find that sleeping apart suits them well, and doesn’t diminish their feelings of closeness. But many couples very much want to sleep together—but can’t, because of a snoring issue.
Sleeping apart can interfere with intimacy, sexual and emotional. Couples may find themselves having sex less often when they’re regularly sleeping apart. Partners also may miss the physical closeness of sleeping together, and the emotional bond that it confers for many people.
In many cases, snoring can be reduced or stopped altogether. Here are some of the approaches suggested by sleep experts.
Change your sleep position. Snoring is more likely to occur if you sleep on your back, because this position worsens the effect of relaxed tongue and throat muscles.
Avoid alcohol before bedtime. Alcohol acts as a muscle relaxant, making it more likely your jaw will drop open while your tongue and throat sag.
Lose weight. Dropping just 10-15 pounds can make a huge difference in the amount of excess tissue in the throat.
Open your nasal passages. Congestion or a narrow nasal cavity may be blocking your air flow. A steamy shower, saline spray, or nasal strips may improve the situation.
Keep the bedroom well vacuumed and dusted. If your pillows are washable, wash them at least once a month. Otherwise, regularly run them through a fluff cycle in the dryer to remove hair and dust. If your pillows are a few years old, it may be time to replace them. Keep pets off the bed. If you suspect that you have chronic allergies, see your doctor for testing and treatment.
Raise the head of the bed a few inches. This can be done with a foam wedge under the mattress, or with blocks placed under the feet of the bed frame.
Anti-snoring mouthpieces are designed to be worn at night. They either reposition the jaw or hold the tongue in place. These come in a wide range of styles and materials. At the higher end are customized devices made by dentists or other specialists
Drink plenty of water throughout the day. Dehydration increases the stickiness of mucous, which in turn may intensify snoring.