Loading...

Follow Sleep.Org on Feedspot

Continue with Google
Continue with Facebook
or

Valid
Sleep.Org by Tim Ferman - 1M ago

Does your partner keep you awake all night with noisy breathing? These tips may help you get a better night’s rest.

You set your bedroom thermostat to the perfect cool temperature, put fresh linens on your bed, and turned off all your electronics an hour ago. But for many people, there’s one thing about their sleep environment that they can’t control: the noise of a partner’s snoring. If this sounds like your situation and your sleep quality is suffering because of it, these tips may help you get the rest you need.

Change Your Pillows

Thanks to congested nasal passages, allergy sufferers are more likely to snore. Pillows, which collect dust and aren’t washed as often as your sheets, can hold these this common allergen, so consider cleaning or changing them every six months to ease your partner’s snoring. Nasal strips or a nasal decongestant taken before bed may also help, especially if the allergies are seasonal.

Change the Angle

Elevating the head of your bed by about four inches (use blocks or wedges beneath the front supports) may help clear nasal passages. For a more low-maintenance option, have your partner sleep on a thicker pillow that raises the head up a little more.

Roll Your Partner Over

Sometimes, snoring can be due to sleep position. If your partner is a back sleeper, snoring may be a result of the tongue relaxing and rolling to the wall of the throat, partially blocking the airway. Placing a pillow behind your partner can help enforce side sleeping. Another strategy: Sew a tennis ball in the back of your partner’s sleep shirt to discourage rolling onto the back.

Invest in a Sound Machine

A little bit of neutral background noise goes a long way in muffling the sounds of a snoring partner. White noise machines come pre-loaded with several different variations of unobtrusive sounds; you can also download white noise sound files to play through your phone overnight.

The post How To Sleep With A Snorer appeared first on Sleep.Org.

Read Full Article
Visit website
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

Even though sleep apnea is a nighttime condition, it’s not uncommon to experience symptoms during waking hours, too. Check out these signs that you could be overlooking.

The loud gasp-like breathing that accompanies obstructive sleep apnea may seem impossible to miss, but ironically people often aren’t aware they have the condition. In fact, a partner who shares the bed is likely to pick up on the problem first, since detecting your own noisy snoring is virtually impossible. But disruptive snoring is only one sign of sleep apnea, albeit the most recognizable. Many symptoms actually occur during the day. If you notice any of the following red flags, talk to your doctor, since—if left untreated—sleep apnea may up the odds of heart trouble, diabetes, and other health complications.

Excessive Tiredness

Daytime sleepiness is a common sleep apnea symptom. Because the condition is associated with multiple brief sleep interruptions throughout the night (people typically don’t even notice the awakenings), it is difficult to get a good night’s rest. As a result, it’s not unusual for sleep apnea sufferers to feel exhausted during the day, even though they can’t pinpoint the cause.

Moodiness or Trouble Concentrating

People with sleep apnea may be irritable or depressed during the day. Many also find it difficult to remain attentive, whether at work or at school. Children affected by the condition may perform poorly in the classroom or become hyperactive.

Morning Headaches

Headaches upon waking often are a sign of someone suffering from a sleep disorder, especially when there is no notable cause, such as drinking alcohol the night before. Some people with sleep apnea may also experience a sore throat or dry mouth first thing in the morning.

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms and suspect it may be related to sleep apnea, talk with your doctor. Your physician may recommend a sleep study for further evaluation. If you do have the condition, lifestyle changes as well as other therapies can help stop the snoring, allowing you to get the sleep you need at night, so you can enjoy the day ahead.

The post Is Sleep Apnea Affecting Your Daily Life? appeared first on Sleep.Org.

Read Full Article
Visit website
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 
Sleep.Org by Tim Ferman - 1M ago

Noisy nighttime breathing is caused by some factors you can control—and others that you cannot. Learn how snoring may be passed down from parent to child.

We know that curly hair and height run in the family, but is the tendency to snore inherited as well? When it comes to the type of snoring that is related to obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), the answer may be yes: There is a genetic connection. Here are some of the inheritable traits that contribute to OSA-related snoring:

A Narrow Airway

One factor that can influence a case of OSA is the size of a person’s airway. People with narrower throats are more susceptible to snoring or OSA, and this trait tends to be found across multiple generations in a family. If it’s common among your older relatives, it may increase your odds of becoming a snorer as well. Two other factors that contribute to narrower airways—facial structure and neural control of the upper airway muscles—also have genetic components, meaning if they appear in one generation they are likely to also appear in the next.

Obesity

While lifestyle habits play an important role in determining a person’s body size, being overweight or obese also has hereditary causes. Genes can help determine the amount of body fat you have and how your body uses calories when exercising. Excess weight contributes to poor muscle tone and more tissue around the neck and throat—and both impact snoring. What’s more, body-fat distribution—or where the fat on your body tends to be located—has a genetic component and is an important factor when it comes to OSA.

Blood Markers

Even without OSA, habitual snoring seems to run in families. Two genetic markers found in the blood have been identified as having a strong positive correlation to snoring. Coupled with a family history, these markers suggest that snoring is, to a certain extent, a hereditary experience.

If your sleep in being disrupted by snoring (your own or your spouse’s), talk with your doctor about your family’s history of snoring to gain a better understanding of the causes behind this frustrating situation, and what you can do to treat it.

The post Is Snoring Genetic? appeared first on Sleep.Org.

Read Full Article
Visit website
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 
Sleep.Org by Tim Ferman - 1M ago

These noise blockers can help mute the sounds of a bustling hotel or a snoring spouse. Here’s how to get the most out of them.

Whether you’re trying to score a little extra sleep at an airport lounge or hoping to catch a little shut-eye with a house full of youngsters, earplugs can be your best friends. These small buds can improve sleep quality even in the toughest places, like the intensive care unit of a hospital. But with multiple types available, which one is right for you? Follow this guide for what to buy, and when to use them.

If You’re Flying…

Those who fly frequently know that the benefits of a pair of earplugs go far beyond drowning out noise. Earplugs help to equalize changes in cabin pressure, thereby preventing painful ear popping during takeoff and landing. You may wish to remove them once you’re in the air, but if you want to nap during your flight, airplane-friendly earplugs also do a good job blocking the sounds of crying babies and chatty seatmates.

During Vacation…

Do you have a tough time sleeping on the road? It may be worth making room for a couple of sets of disposable foam earplugs in your travel kit. These inexpensive plugs are only recommended for a single use, making them easy options if you’re worried about losing them in the hotel. And don’t worry if you forget to pack them: Many varieties that block out up to 33 dB of sound can be found at local pharmacies.

When You’re Sleeping at Home…

For many people, getting a good night’s sleep right in their own bed is a challenge. If you’re among those who suffer from living in a noisy neighborhood or bedding down next to a snoring partner, a pair of reusable earplugs might be the way to go.

Some options include cords and storage cases that can help prevent you from losing these small accessories. Many are also washable if you’re leery about putting the same piece of silicon in your ear every night. You can even get custom-molded plugs that not only cancel noise but fit your ears like a dream.

Whatever variety of earplug you’re using, keep in mind that properly inserting these sleep aids into your ears is paramount for successful noise-blocking—so pay attention to the directions on the packaging. Poorly placed earbuds block about a third less noise than those that were accurately placed in the ear canal.

The post The How-to Guide for Earplugs appeared first on Sleep.Org.

Read Full Article
Visit website
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

Put an end to noisy nights and restless sleep with these easy-to-follow tips.

There are some nighttime noises you can’t control, like a rowdy roommate, the neighbor’s howling dog, or cars on a nearby highway. Luckily, you can turn down the volume on one of the most common sleep-disturbing sounds: Snoring. These simple lifestyle tweaks can help lower the odds that you or your partner will be jolted awake by the gasps and snorts of nighttime snoring, ensuring better sleep for both of you.

Switch Up Your Sleeping Position

Lying on your back may be comfortable, but sleeping this way could lead to snoring. That’s because it places your body in a position where your tongue can easily collapse back, partially blocking your airway. Make an effort to turn on your side before you drift off to sleep, but if you find that you still wake up on your back, try this strange but tried-and-true trick: Sew or Velcro a tennis ball to the back of your pajama top. It will add pressure to your spine if you start to roll onto your back, encouraging you to remain in the side-sleeping position.

Commit to a Healthy Weight

Carrying extra pounds on your frame can lead to a thickening of the tissues in your throat, upping the chance of snoring. Talk with your doctor about whether an exercise routine or change in diet could help you slim down.

Don’t Let Happy Hour Go Too Late

If your snoring volume increases following a few rounds at the bar, cut back on drinking close to bedtime. Alcohol—as well as sedatives such as sleeping pills—can overly relax the throat muscles, triggering snoring. If you do drink, aim to have your last cocktail several hours before you hit the sack.

Start a Saline Habit

Nasal congestion, whether due to allergies or a cold, can make it difficult to breathe through your nose properly while sleeping. And if you switch to inhaling through your mouth instead, it’s likely that you’ll also start snoring. Try a saline rinse to clear out nasal blockages, or use a spray or oral decongestant.

Go to Bed Earlier

A lack of quality sleep can increase the chance that you’ll snore at night. Aim for the recommended seven to eight hours of shut-eye each night, even if that means bumping up your bedtime slightly.

If you follow this advice and snoring is still an issue, see your doctor—especially if your nighttime breathing is exceptionally loud or accompanied by frequent grunt-like interruptions throughout the night. Your physician will want to rule out sleep apnea, a more serious disorder that could lead to heart trouble, elevated blood pressure, liver problems, and more if left untreated.

The post 5 Lifestyle Changes That Reduce Snoring appeared first on Sleep.Org.

Read Full Article
Visit website
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 
Sleep.Org by Tim Ferman - 1M ago

There are definite gender differences when it comes to those sleep-disrupting sounds. Discover the biology behind this middle-of-the-night disturbance.

Nearly 90 million Americans have a habit of snoring in their sleep—and for many of these noisemakers, there are exasperated partners wondering whether he or she will ever sleep through the night again. When it comes to the sex divide between the snorers and the ear plugging partners, who snores more? While both men and women do it, statistically speaking the louder sleeper is likely to be male.

The issue goes beyond just a little night noise: About half of snorers may have obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), a condition that’s also related to sex. OSA, which affects more men than women, happens when the upper portions of a sleeper’s airways become closed off, blocking oxygen and restricting respiration. The result: A gasping breathing pattern that echoes the sound of snoring for the sufferer and induces multiple sleep interruptions during the night.
Getting to the bottom of snoring isn’t always easy, but understanding the role sex plays is a good start. Here are three reasons why men snore more than women:

Physical Differences

Men are born with air passages that are narrower than women’s—and this can cause more nighttime noise. The smaller the airway, the harder it is for air to flow during the normal breathing process. What’s more, when air is forced through a tiny opening, the tissues that surround it vibrate vigorously and snoring becomes louder as a result.

Lifestyle Habits

The use of alcohol and tobacco are significant contributing factors when it comes to snoring: Alcohol relaxes the muscles around the throat and smoke triggers inflammation in the body’s airways. Both of these things can cause snoring to be louder and more frequent. Statistically, men drink alcohol more often than women do; they’re also more likely to drink it in excess. Men smoke more than women as well, leaving them vulnerable to snoring as a side effect.

Weight Gain

Carrying around too many pounds not only negatively affects one’s health, but it can also up the odds of snoring. Excessive weight contributes to poor muscle tone and creates excess throat and neck tissue—both of which vibrate when the sleeper breathes deeply, causing an increase in snoring. And while it’s true that men and women are almost equally overweight in this country, men still lead the charge with 74 percent considered overweight or obese, compared to 67 percent of women.
If there’s a snoring battle raging in your bedroom, know that you’re not alone. The good news is that you can make changes to factors such as lifestyle habits and weight gain that may lower your risk of snoring. Consider an appointment with your health care provider to discuss your snoring, its possible causes and the possibility of OSA.

The post Do Men Snore More Than Women? appeared first on Sleep.Org.

Read Full Article
Visit website
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

The temperature in your bedroom is perfect. Your blackout curtains have been drawn shut. And you’ve just finished a cup of chamomile tea and novel that made you laugh out loud and forget about whatever was bothering you earlier in the day.

You’re just about ready to drift off, and suddenly the air conditioner kicks on. Or a car alarm screeches through the night air. Or your partner sneezes. Suddenly, you’re wide-awake again. Your brain responds to noises when you’re awake and asleep. But if the interruptions wake you up, that can keep you from getting the restful shuteye that you need.

When ambient noise is disrupting your sleep, white (or pink) noise can help to smooth out the rough edges. Imagine sitting next to a person who is loudly chewing gum in a library. Then imagine sitting next to that same person in a crowded bar. It’s the same chomping gum, but underneath the drone of a crowded place, you can’t even hear it anymore. White noise, whether it’s from a sound machine, a simple fan, or crowd noise helps to mask noise-related disruptions by creating a constant ambient sound that makes a “peak” noise, like a door slamming, less of a contrast. And that makes you less likely to be startled awake.

Just like different people respond differently to sounds while they sleep, the right type of white noise for you is a matter of personal preference. Some sound machines and apps allow you to choose from a menu of options like rain, waves crashing, or even a hair dryer. And while it wouldn’t be safe to run an actual hair dryer all night long, a fan or air purifier with a gentle humming noise can be a simple solution that you may already have on hand. Try it tonight. You might find that a little white noise is the secret to your best sleep.

The post Will a Sound Machine Help You Drift Off? appeared first on Sleep.Org.

Read Full Article
Visit website
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

The temperature in your bedroom is perfect. Your blackout curtains have been drawn shut. And you’ve just finished a cup of chamomile tea and novel that made you laugh out loud and forget about whatever was bothering you earlier in the day.

You’re just about ready to drift off, and suddenly the air conditioner kicks on. Or a car alarm screeches through the night air. Or your partner sneezes. Suddenly, you’re wide-awake again. Your brain responds to noises when you’re awake and asleep. But if the interruptions wake you up, that can keep you from getting the restful shuteye that you need.

When ambient noise is disrupting your sleep, white (or pink) noise can help to smooth out the rough edges. Imagine sitting next to a person who is loudly chewing gum in a library. Then imagine sitting next to that same person in a crowded bar. It’s the same chomping gum, but underneath the drone of a crowded place, you can’t even hear it anymore. White noise, whether it’s from a sound machine, a simple fan, or crowd noise helps to mask noise-related disruptions by creating a constant ambient sound that makes a “peak” noise, like a door slamming, less of a contrast. And that makes you less likely to be startled awake.

Just like different people respond differently to sounds while they sleep, the right type of white noise for you is a matter of personal preference. Some sound machines and apps allow you to choose from a menu of options like rain, waves crashing, or even a hair dryer. And while it wouldn’t be safe to run an actual hair dryer all night long, a fan or air purifier with a gentle humming noise can be a simple solution that you may already have on hand. Try it tonight. You might find that a little white noise is the secret to your best sleep.

The post Will a Sound Machine Help You Drift Off? appeared first on Sleep.Org.

Read Full Article
Visit website
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

Finding somewhere to sneak in a mid-day nap isn’t always feasible. What are you supposed to do—crawl under your desk to catch some zzz’s or snooze on the sidelines of your daughter’s soccer practice? The solution: nap studios.

The frequency of naps tends to drop off after the preschool years, but the short bouts of sleep are beneficial at any age. Dozing off for just 20 to 30 minutes may give your mood, alertness, and memory a boost,and as people better understand the importance of sleep, nap spaces have become more popular. Companies like Google and Ben & Jerry’s have carved out places in their offices that people can use for mid-day snoozing,and now sleep spaces are becoming accessible to people who don’t work at these organizations thanks to nap studios.

For a fee, the serene spaces typically provide pillows, blankets, and mats so that you can get a short amount of shut-eye in the middle of your day. Many of the studios also offer meditation classes, something that has been shown to improve sleep. If you think you could benefit from a quick snooze at one of these studios (and most of us could!), use these tips to get the most from your catnap:

Keep your nap to less than 30 minutes. Any longer, and you’ll reach the deeper stages of sleep and may wake up still feeling weary.

Schedule your nap between 1:00pm and 3:00pm. This is when energy levels start to dip, so you’ll get the most out of the snooze.

Set an alarm! Nix anxiety about returning to the office too late by setting an alarm to snap you out of your nap. Some nap studios even provide a wake-up call.

The post Is a Nap Studio Right for You? appeared first on Sleep.Org.

Read Full Article
Visit website
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

If you often have trouble falling asleep at night, it’s a good idea to assess whether your bedroom is the relaxing sleep sanctuary that you want it to be. Is it dark enough? Quiet enough? Are your sheets and pillows soft and comfortable enough? If you’re confident that your sleep environment is set up to help you get a good night’s sleep, it’s time to prep your body and mind to do their part. One of the best ways to do this is to recruit your senses in relaxing ways that will facilitate a smooth journey to the Land of Nod. Here’s how:

Sight

Using the right visualization techniques in the evening can help you de-stress, unwind, fall asleep, and get better quality zzz’s. Close your eyes, sit quietly, breathe deeply, and imagine a place where you felt truly relaxed or peaceful in the past. Maybe it was while standing on a serene mountaintop or sitting by the ocean. Picture the colors and other aspects of the scene in detail and let the vision in your mind calm you.

Sound

Listening to soothing music for 30 to 45 minutes before you turn in for the night can help reduce stress and anxiety, help you fall asleep more easily, and even improve the quality of your sleep. The key is to choose tunes you like that have a slow beat—such as classical music or soft jazz—because your heart rate will slow in response to them, which sets the stage for sleep.

Smell

Inhaling the scent of lavender essential oil in the evening can reduce anxiety and enhance the quality of your sleep. Besides reducing the time it takes to fall asleep, the scent of lavender has been found to increase the percentage of deep or slow-wave sleep, which can help you feel better rested in the morning.

Touch

Just as swaddling a baby can promote calmness and sleep, harnessing the power of touch can boost the quality of your sleep. Learning how to apply acupressure to yourself along key points of your body can improve your sleep. Meanwhile, sleeping with a weighted blanket— which provides constant tactile stimulation all over the body—can provide calming physiological effects, as well as increasing the amount of time you spend in various stages of sleep.

Taste

Having a light bedtime snack can help set you up for a good night’s sleep. Consuming tart cherry juice can increase levels of sleep-inducing melatonin, which can put you in the mood to snooze. Similarly, having a mug of warm milk or a handful of walnuts in the evening can make you sleepy, thanks to the soporific amino acid tryptophan. By contrast, drinking soothing chamomile tea can ease anxiety and depression, which can help you sleep more soundly.

The post Use Your 5 Senses to Set Yourself Up For Better Sleep appeared first on Sleep.Org.

Read Full Article
Visit website

Read for later

Articles marked as Favorite are saved for later viewing.
close
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

Separate tags by commas
To access this feature, please upgrade your account.
Start your free month
Free Preview