240. Stop Snoring for Good

You’ve probably heard funny stories about snorers. On camping trips they are forced to sleep in their own tents. At home, neighbors make them close their windows. Partners sleep in separate bedrooms.

Well, snoring isn’t so funny if you’re the one who’s ostracized—or if you have to put up with someone who snores. (Nine out of ten snorers are men, and most of them are age 40 or over.)

Here are some tips to help you stop snoring.

  1. Sleep on your side. Prop an extra pillow behind your back so you won’t roll over. Try sleeping on a narrow sofa for a few nights to get accustomed to staying on your side.

  2. Sew a marble or tennis ball into a pocket on the back of your pajamas. The discomfort it causes will remind you to sleep on your side.

  3. If you must sleep on your back, raise the head of the bed with bricks or blocks. Elevating the head in this way can prevent the tongue from falling against the back of the throat, which can cause snoring.

  4. If you are overweight, lose weight. Excess fatty tissue in the throat can cause snoring.

  5. Don’t drink alcohol or eat a heavy meal within 3 hours before bedtime. For some reason, both seem to foster snoring.

  6. Take an antihistamine or decongestant before retiring to relieve nasal congestion (which can also contribute to snoring).

  7. Try over-the-counter “nasal strips.” These help keep nasal passages unobstructed.

If the problem persists—or if your bed partner notices that you stop breathing for several seconds in the midst of snoring—see an ear, nose, and throat specialist or a physician who specializes in sleep disorders. You may have a medical problem that needs attention.

Chapter 10
  1. Men’s Health Problems