Is your partner’s nightly drone driving you up the wall? Loud snoring might raise a chuckle, but the habit often brushed aside as harmless is no laughing matter, one to be dismissed lightly or ignored.

In fact it is a serious business! Anyone who has to deal with snoring will know how annoying the noisy vibrating sound can be. Imagine, lying in a warm bed, eyes wilting, all ready to drift off to dreamland, when suddenly obnoxious nocturnal sounds begin to resonate, disrupting your nice peaceful attempt at sleep.

Snoring is not only a nuisance that causes angry, sleepless nights, but it can also break up marriages and put unbearable strains on relationships.

So what causes that loud guttural breathing during sleep? Snoring can be induced by allergies, sinus infections, respiratory issues or a serious medical condition such as sleep apnea that disrupts breathing for short periods during sleep.

Now that you know the trigger, the next step? Find a solution! Though there are many stop-snoring aids available in the market its best to try natural solutions to crush the habit.

Lifestyle changes
Maintaining a regular sleeping pattern, getting in shape, improving eating habits and cutting down the use of addictive substances like smoking and drinking can considerably help in mitigating the problem of snoring.

Sleeping posture
Snorers should change their sleeping posture and try to sleep on their sides or stomach rather than on their backs. This allows more airflow making breathing easier thereby preventing snoring.

Sedatives & alcohol
Avoid alcohol, sleeping pills, sedatives, tranquilizers or antihistamines especially before bedtime, as they relax the muscles in the mouth, tongue and throat, and interfere with breathing which makes snoring worse.

Heavy snacks & dairy products
Over indulgence of caffeine, heavy snacks especially dairy products and soy milk a couple of hours before retiring to bed can trigger saliva and mucus build-up which interferes with breathing.

Clear nasal passages
A stuffy nose can often cause snoring because this makes you breathe through your mouth instead of your nose. A hot shower, inhaling steam or even rubbing an inhaler before turning in will open up the nasal passage and keep you from breathing noisily.

Higher pillows
Keeping the head slightly elevated helps crush the problem. Try propping an extra pillow under your head. This helps in keeping your airway more open and relaxed which in turn prevents snoring.

Gargle
Another remedy is to gargle with a peppermint mouthwash. This works wonders if your snoring is a temporary condition caused by a head cold or an allergy. Gargling with one drop of peppermint oil in a glass of cold water helps shrink the lining of your nose and throat and cuts the snoring effectively.

Stay hydrated
Secretions in your nose and soft palate become stickier when you””””re dehydrated which can create more snoring. Drink plenty of fluids to keep yourself very well hydrated. This will prevent snoring due to lesser congestion in your nose.

Edited by Neelam Goswami on 19-02-2014.

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