Almost everybody has heard a snore that I need no definition of it. 30% of women and 40% of men are habitual snorers with the average of 38 decibel – comparable to the hum of a refrigerator but I’m sure many snores of men travel beyond the walls of the room.
Is snoring normal or is it something to be concerned about?
I found that snoring happens when there’s blockage of air passageway. When the tongue recedes to the upper throat, the brain recognizes the restricted airflow and prompts the chest to work harder. This causes the vibration in the palate and throat – the brewing sound at night.
This sleep apnea can potentially be fatal as people suffering from these stops breathing frequently. Every pause in the breathing pattern could be long enough to keep someone from waking up.
There are risk factors to snoring and sleep apnea. Men, we are more susceptible because we have bigger space behind the tongue, making it easier to fall back. Overweight people’s fatty double chin weights down the throat; coupled with their weaker muscle tone, it’s common for them to snore. Alcohol intake, smoking and certain medications relax the throat and increase the occurrence of snoring. And few people are born from a family history of sleep apnea or nasal and sinus problems.
My sleeping position, a soldier or lying on my back like a corpse, also relaxes throat with gravity pulling the tongue inside. Maybe it’s time to adapt.
Neuroscience professor Dr. Sudhansu Chokroverty warned about taking pills to treat sleep apnea since there’s not much scientific study to back their claims.
But there are self-treatments we could start implementing. To prevent sleeping like a soldier, Dr. Chokroverty suggested taping tennis balls on our back to remind ourselves not to take that sleeping position. Snoring expert Dr. Daniel P. Slaughter says that a clogged nose helps produce snoring. To open the nasal passages, take a hot shower at night and rinse the nose with saltwater. Dr. Slaughter also advised to take lots of fluids within the day as dehydration makes the secretion in the nose sticky.
And of course, losing weight and avoiding alcohol and smoking will reduce the risks of snoring.