Raise your hand if you’ve ever been personally victimised by a SNORER…
Mean Girls reference aside, we’ve all heard snoring anecdotes at family gatherings. Like that one time you really didn’t need to know that your aunt snored and your uncle had to move rooms.
In the United States, snoring affects about 90 million adults. About 37 million of them gets affected regularly – that’s 1 in 3 adults!
Sleeping with or near a snorer can be remedied with two general approaches: WHAT THE SNORER CAN DO and WHAT YOU CAN DO. You can choose to do either or both. It ultimately depends on your relationship with the snorer. Is this person your partner? Your housemate you don’t really talk to? It can get tough.
Why do we even snore?
When snoring, the air you breathe causes the relaxed tissues in the soft palate and throat to vibrate. A range of factors influences this: weight, nose & mouth shape, nasal congestion, pregnancy, and underlying conditions like obstructive sleep apnea.
Tips to Sleep Near A Snorer
What the SNORER can do:
You can tell them verbally, send them this article, or even share it SUBTLY on social media. Depends on how much guts you have!
1. See a doctor or sleep specialist. If you can openly talk to the snorer about this issue, let them know that it’s been affecting your sleep. Even offer to accompany them as it may be a manifestation of an underlying condition.
2. Adjust their sleeping position. Some people tend to snore more when sleeping on their back. The tongue is being lured by gravity – making breathing harder. They can instead sleep on their side or stomach to open up the airways.
3. Use an adjustable/tall pillow or prop their head up with pillows. If they insist on sleeping on their back, just elevating their head may help so the tongue doesn’t fall backwards toward the throat and soft palate.
4. Set a high humidity level. Snoring can sometimes be caused by dryness. You can invest in a humidifier or take a shower before sleeping to soothe the airways.
5. Not drink and snore. Alcohol relaxes the muscles of the body that could contribute to more snoring. If they’re not giving the drinks up, immediately proceed to What You Can Do below.
6. Shred some pounds. If it seems like bodyweight is causing the snoring, it might prove helpful to start exercising. You can never go wrong with it, and it’ll be worth it!
What YOU can do:
Partner in denial of snoring? Really can’t tell your roomie? Very well then.
1. Use earplugs. This is the easiest and handiest option of them all. Some snore survivors have tried-and-tested earplugs of various materials to find the perfect one that blocks the noise completely. To avoid infection, clean your earplugs regularly and never push too far into your ear.
2. Listen to music on your earphones/headphones. Put on your favourite sleeping/calming playlist and sleep through the snoring. If you worry about any emergencies you may not hear whilst sleeping, you can use the ‘Stop Playing’ feature under the timer on the iPhone Alarm app. Android has its equivalent app as well.
3. Block the snoring with white noise. This too is a pretty common technique used by sleepers. Put the TV, fan, humidifier on. Just make sure that this white noise doesn’t awaken the snorer. You know the golden rule: don’t do unto others what you don’t want them to do unto you. Come on, that’s exactly what we’re trying to solve here.
4. Move rooms. Know when to draw the line. If you have a spare room or a sizable sofa in the living room, you might want to move there to catch some well-deserved snooze.
5. Get a bigger mattress size. Don’t have a spare room? If you sleep with a partner, consider getting a big mattress. Stay as far from them as possible. Still use your earplugs. That should have minimised the noise greatly, right?
6. Fall asleep earlier than them. By the time they get into bed, you’ll be fast asleep and already be dreaming.
These are both short and long-term solutions to snoring. Now the most important question is… who do you think will adjust?