Why do I snore and how to reduce it?

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You may have been wondering why you snore and what you can do to reduce it.

  • Snoring is caused by things such as your tongue, mouth, throat or airways in your nose vibrating as you breathe.
  • It happens because these parts of your body relax and narrow when you’re asleep.

You’re more likely to snore if you:

  • are overweight
  • smoke
  • drink too much alcohol
  • sleep on your back

Sometimes it’s caused by a condition like sleep apnoea, which is when your airways become temporarily blocked as you sleep.

Simple lifestyle changes can help stop, reduce or cope with snoring:

  • try to lose weight if you’re overweight
  • sleep on your side
  • consider asking your partner to use ear plugs if your snoring affects their sleep
  • do not smoke
  • do not drink too much alcohol
  • sleeping pills can sometimes cause snoring

When to see a GP?

  • lifestyle changes aren’t helping
  • your snoring is having a big impact on you or your partner’s life
  • you feel sleepy during the day, or make gasping or choking noises while you sleep – you may have sleep apnoea, which can be serious if not treated

Treatment for snoring depends on the cause

  • Tongue partially blocking the back of your throat
    • a device you wear in your mouth to bring your tongue forward (mandibular advancement device)
  • Mouth falling open when you’re asleep
    • a chin strap to hold your mouth closed, or a device you wear in your mouth to make you breathe through your nose while you sleep (vestibular shield)
  • Blocked or narrow airways in your nose
    • special devices (nasal dilators) or strips that hold your nose open while you sleep, or sprays to reduce swelling inside your nose

Source: NHS