If you have done much research about snoring and how to prevent it, then you have likely heard that changing your sleeping position can do a lot to help.
But is it true?
Article at a Glance:
Yes, there is actually a lot of merit to this idea. The most popular theory is that you should avoid sleeping on your back – and as it turns out, this is a pretty accurate theory. Sleeping on your side is generally regarded as the ‘healthiest’ way to sleep, from a snoring standpoint.
Sleeping on your stomach is supposedly no better on the airway, but is more strenuous on the back and neck… making ‘side sleeping’ the preferred position for sleep if snoring (or even sleep apnea) tends to be a big problem for you.
Some people have even gone as far as to sew tennis balls to the back of their pajamas to help keep them off of their back during the night!
Here is what you need to know about this stop-snoring method.
How Is It Meant To Work?
Changing your sleeping position is meant to work by changing the alignment of your airway. So basically, this is how it works.
When you sleep on your back, the loose tissue and muscle in your soft palate will relax. When this happens, it may close in on your airway and ‘collapse’ your airspace. This causes the air to rush through faster when you breathe, which in turn causes the soft tissue to ‘vibrate.’
This is a phenomenon known as soft palate vibration, and is one of the predominant causes of snoring.
But when you flip over and sleep on your side, it becomes more difficult for that loose tissue to collapse in on your airway. So this decreases your chances of suffering from snoring or sleep apnea. Even if it doesn’t completely get rid of the problem, it does tend to help make it less severe – and let’s face it, every little bit helps when it comes to snoring!
Of course, rolling over and sleeping on your back can be very habitual, and may happen unconsciously while you sleep. For this reason, a lot of people either sleep with pillows, or sew tennis balls to the back of their night-shirt, or go to some other lengths to make sure that they remain on their side instead of on their backs throughout the course of the night.
This is one of the challenges of attempting to use a different sleep position as a snoring remedy.
Do We Believe That Changing Your Sleeping Position Can Actually Work?
Yes, we do believe that changing your position can help. We also believe that this can be a very beneficial supplemental remedy when used in conjunction with other remedies (in other words, changing your sleeping position while also using a stop snoring device, etc.).
For some people, just changing the sleeping position is not enough. But for others, it can do a world of good. This is actually a better potential remedy than a lot of people give it credit for – so trying this one out early in the game could save you a lot of wasted time and energy (and sleeplessness).
Who Should Try This Method?
Literally anyone can try this method – including children. As long as you do not have some physical ailment that keeps you from sleeping on your side, you should be good to go to give this one a try. Obviously, if you have a neck problem that keeps you from being able to comfortably sleep on your side, then you might have to work on that problem a little bit before you can hope to make this work.
Propping your head up with plenty of pillows, or doing a bit of research into how to make this process easier on your spine, are some possible ways to help yourself to make this work better.
Who Should Avoid Trying This?
People with complicated back problems might not benefit from changing their positions too much – especially since sleeping on your back is one of the healthier ways to sleep where spine health is concerned.
Changing your position can be an awesome way to help improve the quality of your sleep, even if it does not completely remove the snoring problem altogether. It may seem like a simple solution, but the position of your body does have a lot to do with how much you may or may not snore – so it is certainly worth a shot.
Of course, if you fear that you may be suffering from sleep apnea as well, then a visit to your doctor should most certainly become a priority… as OSA is much more severe than regular snoring.