5 ways to stop snoring
There's no miracle cure for snoring, but lifestyle changes, over-the-counter remedies and medical treatments may help.
As snoring is often related to lifestyle, there are some simple changes you can make to minimise it.
Snoring self-help tips:
Maintain a healthy weight and diet. Being overweight by just a few kilograms can lead to snoring. Fatty tissue around your neck squeezes the airway and prevents air from flowing in and out freely.
Try to sleep on your side rather than your back. While sleeping on your back, your tongue, chin and any excess fatty tissue under your chin can relax and squash your airway. Sleeping on your side prevents this.
Avoid alcohol before going to bed. Alcohol causes the muscles to relax more than usual during a normal night's sleep. This added relaxation of the muscles makes the back of the throat collapse more readily, which then causes snoring.
Quit or cut down on smoking. Cigarette smoke irritates the lining of the nasal cavity and throat, causing swelling and catarrh. If the nasal passages become congested, it's difficult to breathe through your nose because the airflow is decreased.
Keep your nasal passages clear, so that you breathe in through your nose rather than your mouth. If an allergy is blocking your nose, try antihistamine tablets or a nasal spray. Ask your pharmacist for advice, or see your GP, if you're affected by an allergy or any other condition that affects your nose or breathing, such assinusitis.
Medical help for snoring
For some cases of snoring, surgery to fix structural problems in the airways, such as enlarged adenoids, can help.
If your snoring is caused by looseness in your soft palate (the soft upper part at the back of the mouth), a technique called radiofrequency ablation, which uses heat energy to tighten the palate, may help.