For those that struggle with snoring, whether it's a new occurrence or you have struggled with the problem for many years, it can be difficult to deal with and affect the quality of both your sleep and those around you.
Snoring is caused by an incorrect breathing technique or an obstruction of the airways in your nose, meaning it can occur as a result of illness, allergies, or longer-term issues like deviated septums or narrow airways.
If you find yourself snoring or your partner has commented on your snoring habits, there are various means you can try to reduce and prevent it, including practising breathing techniques, visiting your GP or making use of products like snoring nasal strips to help keep your snoring at bay and ensure a better nights sleep.
How to breathe better at night
Many people get into bad habits with their breathing techniques which can cause snoring or heavy breathing during the day and night. For example, where we find ourselves breathing through our mouth and not our nose as we should be. There are a few ways to practise your breathing that can help to reduce snoring at nighttime.
Breathe through your nose
Humans are designed to breathe through their noses, as they purify the air before it passes through to our lungs and ensures our blood is taking in the optimum amount of oxygen. When our body is receiving the right amount of oxygen, it slows down your heart rate and, in turn, ensures a more relaxed state of sleep, benefitting both you and those sleeping nearby.
Mouth breathing, on the other hand, can cause more air than necessary to be inhaled yet less oxygen to be absorbed into the bloodstream, due to the speed at which the air is inhaled and exhaled. To help reduce snoring and improve your breathing in general, you should make a conscious effort to breathe in and out through your nose as opposed to your mouth if you’ve fallen into a bad habit.
Engage your diaphragm
Another key aspect of a good night's sleep is to focus on breathing deeply and fully engaging the muscles in your diaphragm. Instead of taking short, fast breaths which can be a bad habit many people fall into when feeling stressed or anxious during the day or night, actively try to inhale air deep into your lungs. One way to do this is to imagine your lungs are like balloons that you need to slowly fill up with air through your stomach.
A positive of attempting long and slow breathing is that it will help you to fall asleep faster and more easily as it slows down your heart rate and stabilises your blood pressure. By practising deep breathing during the day and while you try to get to sleep, you can get in the habit of doing so while you sleep and improve the quality of your sleep over time.
Consider structural issues
It’s important to be aware that, for some people, snoring is due to structural issues with the nose, for example, in the case of deviated septums or narrow nasal passages that cause obstructions to air passing through. In this case, you should seek professional advice from your GP who will be able to suggest a solution.
Nasal products to help you stop snoring at night
There are various products available that can help to relieve nasal congestion and help those with narrow nasal passages or an illness like the common cold to sleep better at night and reduce snoring. Weldricks Pharmacy is proud to stock Breathe Right® nasal strips, a well-known brand in the UK that offer a range of the best nasal strips for snoring, designed to increase nasal airflow considerably overnight.