Up to one in four people in England snore regularly. As well as having potentially harmful effects on snorers themselves, this problem can prevent sufferers’ partners from getting enough sleep. Because of this, it has the potential to drive a wedge between couples.
People of any age and gender can snore, but it’s more common among those aged 40-60 and men are twice as likely as women to do it. The distinctive sound made by snorers is caused by the vibration of soft tissue in the head and neck.
National Stop Snoring Week
Many people simply accept their snoring, believing there’s nothing they can do to stop it. However, there are often simple steps that individuals can take to address the problem. This is a message that the British Snoring & Sleep Apnoea Association is keen to get across. The association was formed in 1991 to help snorers and their bed partners end their nights of disturbed sleep. It aims to promote public awareness that snoring and sleep apnoea (a condition that causes the muscles and soft tissues in the throat to relax so much that total blockage of the airways occurs for short periods of time) are usually treatable conditions.
As part of its campaigning, it stages an annual National Stop Snoring Week. This year’s will run from 20th April to 25th April and it will focus on the main causes of snoring and sleep apnoea, and how many of the risk factors are inherited and run in families.
The organisation notes that obesity, facial and head shapes, upper airway anatomy and neurological control of breathing are inherited, and they are often the cause of these conditions. During the week, the association intends to highlight the differences between inherited traits that predispose people to snoring and lifestyle factors that can lead to the problem.
How to tackle snoring
If doctors believe lifestyle factors may be to blame for snoring, they can recommend that sufferers take steps such as lose weight, reduce their alcohol consumption, give up smoking or increase their exercise levels. Such changes can be enough to stop people snoring.
Alternatively, if such actions don’t have the desired effect, a variety of anti-snoring devices can be used. If the snoring is coming from the nose, people may benefit from using nasal strips or dilators. For snoring from the mouth, chin strips or vestibular shields can help, and for snoring caused by the base of the tongue, a device that pushes the jaw and tongue forward can prove effective. Meanwhile, in certain cases, surgery is recommended.
Could a change of bed be the answer?
Another potential solution to the snoring problem concerns sleeping positions. Snoring tends to be worse when people lie flat on their back, as this causes the tongue to fall back. By raising the head and sleeping at a slight incline, it’s possible to change the effect that gravity has on the neck, and this can reduce instances of snoring.
We offer a range of adjustable beds that make finding the perfect sleeping position simple. If you think you could benefit from one of our easy-to-use beds, take a look around our website or get in touch for more information. Whatever you do, don’t simply accept your snoring. By making some straightforward changes, you might be able to tackle this problem and improve your quality of life.