There is nothing more annoying than trying to get a good nights sleep while your significant other is next to you snoring like a freight train. According to recent studies, 1 in 4 people suffer from pathological snoring, which can present itself as chronic or sporadic. Although snoring is very common, and often nothing to be concerned about, it can cause sleep deprivation and disrupt a normal lifestyle if severe enough.
Snoring occurs when air movement is obstructed during breathing. Most treatments focus on clearing this blockage, which can be due to many issues such as tense jaw muscles, and obstruction of the nasal passageway. Interestingly, sometimes snoring isn’t caused by any anatomical malfunctions in the respiratory system, but by bad nutritional habits or allergies that one isn’t aware of. Therefore, some natural remedies should also be tried before considering more serious underlying causes.
There are many essential oils that, thanks to their decongestant, disinfectant, and emollient properties, can have a beneficial effect on mucus and facilitate nasal ventilation, especially at night.
An efficient method of preventing snoring involves preparing a blend of essential oils of eucalyptus, juniper, mountain pine, and peppermint. Around 25 ml of each oil poured on a damp cloth and placed on the heater in your bedroom can have soothing effects on your respiratory system. Alternatively, you can put some drops directly in a humidifier. To optimize the effect, before going to bed, you can gently clear your nose with a saltwater solution. If done daily before sleeping, this solution can disinfect and relieve congestion.
In the field of medicinal plants, it is also common to use “Chinese basil” for sleep disturbances. The oil extracted from its seeds is rich in omega 3 and complex flavonoids. Another beneficial plant is the Yellow Parilla (Canadian Moonseed), which is often advised as a natural remedy for allergies, especially respiratory problems due to its anti-inflammatory benefits. It is available as a dietary supplement and the recommended dose is 1-2 drops a day.
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For these natural remedies to be effective, you must remember to change or eliminate bad habits, starting with your diet. You shouldn’t smoke or drink alcohol before going to bed, and you should reduce your intake of fatty foods. Fat forming around the throat is another factor that leads to air blockage. You should also keep yourself constantly hydrated and increase your fruit and vegetable intake.
Finally, changing the position you sleep in may also help with snoring. Sleeping on your side, and possibly using a second pillow to elevate your head can naturally facilitate airflow when breathing.
With these simple suggestions, plus a healthier diet, snorers and their loved ones can sleep happier, in silence.
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