Snoring can significantly impair the sleep quality of those affected and especially those around them. However, five simple measures can help to switch off the annoying sleeping noises.
According to the Robert Koch Institute (RKI), the snoring noises occur mainly when the air is inhaled through a slack and narrowed throat and throat area during sleep. Various factors such as obesity can play a role here.
Accordingly, reducing excess weight is generally considered an important approach to combating snoring, but above all with a view to a long-term solution. In addition, there are also some shorter-term implementable measures to prevent the sleeping noises.
1. Avoid alcohol
One of these measures is reducing alcohol consumption. The sleep doctor Professor Dieter Riemann from the University Hospital Freiburg also urgently recommends avoiding alcohol in addition to weight loss, since there can be a connection with sleep noises.
2. Adjust sleeping position
According to a team of experts from the Medical Center for Quality in Medicine (ÄZQ), adjustments to the sleeping position can also be helpful against snoring. Although this has hardly been examined in studies so far, switching from the supine to a side sleeping position seems plausible and cannot do any harm.
3. Nasal spreaders (nasal dilators)
Furthermore, the experts name so-called nasal dilators as a remedy for snoring, for which there is scientific evidence of a positive effect. The nasal spreaders are intended to widen the nasal entrance and ensure free breathing, which can be particularly helpful for snoring due to restricted breathing in the front area of the nose.
4. Mandibular splint
The dental splint, known in technical terms as a lower jaw protrusion splint, can be worn overnight and pulls the lower jaw forward, causing the throat to widen and the tissue to tighten, explain the experts at the ÄZQ.
However, this procedure is not suitable for all those affected, since, for example, there must be sufficient teeth or dental implants to hold the splint and the lower jaw must be able to move sufficiently forward. When adjusting the splint, it is advisable to involve specialists in dentistry and sleep medicine.
5. Nasal sprays and nose drops
The ÄZQ reports that decongestant nasal sprays and nasal drops can relieve snoring in the short term, but also damage the nasal mucosa in the long term. It is therefore not advisable to use it. However, these means can be used to test whether a nose operation could help against snoring, according to the experts.
Surgery as a last resort
Depending on the cause of the snoring, an operation on the nose or the soft palate can also be helpful, although according to the ÄZQ, the operation on the nose is only recommended in the case of impaired nasal breathing. And the chances of success of the operations decrease the more overweight those affected are, explains the team of experts.
Effect of other means questionable
The experts also emphasize that there is no reliable scientific evidence for the effectiveness of other aids against snoring such as oils, throat sprays or moisturizers. Drugs against snoring are also not recommended, as they probably do more harm than good due to their side effects. (fp)