Dealing with Your Partner’s Snoring

Summary: Snoring can be funny, but also frustrating for the sleeper and their partner. Snoring spouses have been comedic material for centuries, but it’s no joke in reality. It’s hard to sleep when a partner is snoring, and if none of these solutions help, visit a sleep clinic to see if there are underlying health problems.

How can you stop snoring? Or more to the point, how can you stop your partner from snoring? If you have ever slept beside someone with one of those loud, snorting, snuffling snores, then you know that it’s not easy to handle. It can be funny sometimes — anything that sounds like that is likely to get some laughs, but sometimes you just want to get some sleep! Some of the solutions that might fix the snoring problem can be funny as well, and they might even work.

A ball in the back: One suggestion that has been around for a while is to sew a pocket in the back of a sleep shirt and keep a tennis ball in there. The idea here is that the tennis ball will stop the sleeper from rolling over to sleep on their back, and therefore will breathe better while sleeping.

Take a shower: Keeping the airways clear is essential to a successful snoring solution. Try a neti pot to clean out the nasal passages or take a hot shower before bed to help relieve congestion. Staying hydrated by drinking water throughout the day also helps when nasal passages are clogged.

Keep the airways open: Some old wives’ tales advocate asking your partner to gargle with garlic water, or helping them by putting toothpaste under the nose, or rubbing their upper lip while they sleep. One would assume that these tricks would also work by helping to open the airways!

Practice good sleep hygiene: A hot shower before bed is a part of practicing good sleep hygiene. This means that when your body is physically ready for sleep, just tired enough, and not overtired, the sleep will be better and the snoring may be less. Avoid caffeine, alcohol, and sedatives, which can make falling asleep and staying asleep worse.

Don’t let the bed bugs bite… and don’t breathe in any dust mites, either. Change your pillows frequently for a better, fresher night’s sleep. Old pillows can cause allergic reactions, which can lead to snoring. Keep the bedroom free of anything that may cause allergy. If you don’t need new pillows, put the ones you have in the dryer every few weeks to fluff them up. One old wives’ tale suggests sleeping without a pillow to help prevent snoring.

Some of these solutions might work. Staying away from things that interfere with sleep and preventing congestion will help if the snoring is occasional. However, if the snoring seems to be more than occasional, a visit to a sleep clinic might be necessary to find out if there is a deeper cause. Snoring might be a sign of something bigger, and if it seems as though your partner is having trouble breathing in his or her sleep, or is waking frequently, then the snoring is no laughing matter.

Sleeplessness is not a joke. If you sense that you or your partner’s snoring is coming from something more than just allergy or head cold, visit a sleep specialist to find out what is going on and how they can help.

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