Friday, March 5, 2010

Ways to Stop Snoring


Before going into the details of ways to stop snoring it would be worthwhile to mention the risk factors involved for those who snore regularly. There is a known relationship between obesity and snoring, but snoring is also associated with an increase risk for diabetes, heart disease and blood pressure. Pregnant women who snore may be giving off signs of prenatal high blood pressure and should be sure to have it monitored.


There are several helpful ways to stop snoring
(1) Sleeping on the left side
(2) Losing weight
(3) Reducing consumption of alcohol.
(4) Quit smoking
(5) Elevating your head while you sleep.


There are several products in the market that are supposed to be snoring cures, ways to stop snoring.
Please note these products are available but are they really effective.
Nose strips. Nose strips can be applied to your nose to help pull your nostrils apart so that the airflow through your nostrils is not blocked. While this will work well if you have a deviated septum or nasal congestion, it won't do much at all if you snore because you are overweight,drink too much, or have a collapsing soft palate.
Snoring sprays. These sprays market themselves as "stop snoring" sprays. The likelihood of them working well has not been established.
Snoring gum, snoring nose drops. Unfortunately, there's no evidence that these commercial products actually do much to help, or are stop snoring remedies.
Mouthpieces. While mouthpieces can save you a fortune in dental work if you grind your teeth at night, these specially-made, form-fitting pieces show no evidence on how to prevent snoring.
Anti-snoring pills. Again, this is more of a marketing gimmick than a proven snoring treatment solution.
Air filters. If your snoring is caused by nasal congestion, and your nasal congestion is caused by allergies, air filters can help indirectly by reducing the number of allergens in the air…and on the topic of allergies, you should address things like laundry soap, linens, and mites and dust in your mattress and in your room, as well as consider switching to hypoallergenic pillows.
Mouth exercises. Studies have shown that mouth exercises that tone the muscles in the throat and mouth, relax the jaw, and firm the soft palate may help to reduce snoring.
Lets me explain a bit about the mouth and lip exercises
Exercising your mouth is another great way to firm up the muscles you use in breathing. Not only will you leave this group of exercises less likely to snore, but you should end up with a smile on your face.
Open wide. Open your mouth as widely as you can, then close and press your lips firmly together. Repeat several times.
Kiss me. Form a kiss with your lips as if you were going to kiss someone. Better yet, kiss someone…but pretending will suffice. Repeat eight to ten times and do this exercise twice a day.
Smile. Don't just smirk or grin, but break your face into a great big smile. Hold it for a few seconds and release. Repeat eight to ten times. The added benefit of the smile is that even "fake" smiles release endorphins, so this exercise will, in addition to reducing your snoring, make you happy.
Lip stretch. Without closing your mouth, stretch your lips out away from your teeth as far as you can and hold for several seconds. Repeat the exercise several times.
Body Exercises
If your body is tense, it's likely to affect your throat and mouth as well.Tension is palpable in the shoulders and the neck; there are stretching exercises you can do for both areas to help you relax the muscles. If your snoring is caused by or exacerbated by weight issues, you'll want to place additional focus on improving
your body. Even moderate exercise can help you tone up, lose weight, and become a healthier, fitter you.
Neck
The neck is a place of a lot of tension—tension that can ultimately affect your mouth and throat and hinder your ability to sleep and breathe peacefully at night.These are great exercises to do right before you go to sleep at night, and can be done while sitting on your bed.
The giraffe. Without turning or tilting your head, try to stretch your neck upward and slightly forward. You won't actually notice a lot of movement with this exercise, but you may notice a sensation of released tension after repeating the motion several times. Try not to hunch your shoulders as you stretch. Hold the stretch for several seconds if you can and repeat the exercise six to eight times.
Head tilts. Gently tip your head toward each shoulder, stretching carefully. Try to aim for your ear to touch the ball of your shoulder to elongate the stretch. Hold the stretch for several seconds and then straighten your head. Do not try to go from one shoulder to the other, as this may cause neck strain. Move slowly and purposefully. Repeat the stretch eight to ten times.
Neck rolls. Drop your head gently until your chin is comfortably resting near your chest. Drag your chin along your chest and up toward each shoulder. As your chin approaches each shoulder, elongate the stretch by trying to touch your chin to the shoulder. You won't really be able to reach don't hunch your shoulders or your back but the stretching will further relax the muscles. Hold the stretch at the point where your chin is reaching for your shoulder for a few seconds. Repeat the exercise (both sides) eight to ten times.
Head turns. Sitting up straight with your shoulders squared, turn your head to the right and to the left as if you were going to look over the back of your shoulder. Don't go quite so far as to be able to look over your shoulder, as this may tense you, but turn your head far enough that your chin is in line with your shoulder. Move gently during this exercise and hold the stretches. It's not about whipping your head back and forth.Repeat the exercise eight to ten times.
Turtle. Stretch your neck forward. Picture yourself like a turtle poking its head out of its shell; that's what you're trying to accomplish with this movement. Gently hold the stretch for two or three seconds before releasing. Repeat eight to ten times.
Shoulders
The shoulders are another typical site of major muscle tension. When the shoulders are tight, it affects back and neck muscles too. Try these exercises before bed.
Shoulder rolls. Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, with your feet facing forward. Pull in your abdominal muscles so that your body is solid. Lift your shoulders up and roll them back as if you were trying to make them meet behind you. Repeat the roll eight to ten times, then switch and roll your shoulders forward for the same number of repetitions.
Triceps stretches. Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, with your feet facing forward. Pull in your abdominal muscles so that your body is solid. Lift your arm straight up in the air, then bend at the elbow in such a way that your lower arm runs along the back of your head and the inside of your hand is facing your neck. Use your other arm to gently apply pressure at your bended elbow to push your hand toward the middle of your back. Don't stretch further than is comfortable, but hold the stretch three to four seconds.
Repeat four to six times on each side.
Duck flap. Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, with your feet facing forward. Pull in your abdominal muscles so that your body is solid. Put your hands on your hips with your elbows bent and facing out. Pull your elbows back as if you were going to touch them together behind your back. Stretch comfortably, but don't strain. Hold the stretch for two to three seconds, then release. Repeat six to eight times.
Arm Stretch. Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, with your feet facing forward. Pull in your abdominal muscles so that your body is solid. Hold your arms straight out in front of you. As you stretch the arms out away from your body as far as you can, gently cross your forearms to make an "X" first with one arm on top, and then the other. Hold for three to four seconds and then release. Repeat six to eight times.
Body Focus
In addition to the exercises suggested here, Pilates, yoga, and strength training are all great ways to improve flexibility, muscle tone, and stress levels. Don't leave out the necessity of regular, heart pumping aerobic activity to increase your energy, burn off those extra calories, and help you maintain a healthy weight.
In the next article I will focus on breathing exercises, tongue, jaw and relaxation exercises that are the other ways to stop snoring. Share Health|Fitness
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