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Stopping Snoring with Acupuncture

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Snoring And Acupuncture

Snoring is a major health issue in the country nowadays, and one that can cause other health problems as well. It is also known to make spouses angry the world over, when they have to share a bed with a snorer, almost always causing the latter to have to wear a snore guard.

The treatments for snoring vary widely, and include oral devices as well as invasive surgeries. You also have many alternative therapies, which have been shown to either reduce the severity of snoring or cure it altogether. One of these is acupuncture.

How Acupuncture Can Help to Stop Snoring

Chinese medicine, which is the source of acupuncture, holds that snoring happens because the Qi of the affected person is weak. Qi is the life force, which combines the harmonic flow of yang and yin energies. So if Qi gets blocked somehow, it needs redirecting.

If you are dealing with a mild or moderate snoring problem resulting from soft tissue falling limp or excessive mucus, there are acupressure points, which can be stimulated to fix the energy imbalance. This will bring back harmony to the body, and resultantly strengthen the Qi.

Acupressure tends to focus on two points: the throat and the sinuses. Some people have chronic allergies, which lead to nasal passage inflammation, which in turn causes snoring. The nasal tissue that is inflamed will cause obstruction in the nasal passages, rendering them unable to function the right way. Sometimes, the channels that remove the mucus from the sinuses can get narrowed as a result of sinusitis, which also blocks airflow.

Acupuncture seeks to remove the edema in the tissue as well as drain the blocked mucus. When done right, it also aids blood circulation, which means nutrients and oxygen are transported to the tissues for fast repair. In acupuncture, there are points associated with relieving sinus pressure. The first of these is along the eyebrow, where the eye meets the bridge of the nose. Another is on either side of the nostril openings, while yet another can be found adjacent to these points, at the base of the cheekbones.

If you are dealing with pressure in the sinuses, but do not have the time or inclination to go see an acupuncturist, it is easy to locate these points and massage them yourself. This will provide temporary relief from the problem. There are acupuncture points that specifically target the immune system, which are believed by some to reduce snoring problems. For instance, Chinese medicine holds that the spleen/pancreas meridian is associated with the immune system.

How to Measure the Amount of Sleep in a Snorer

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Measuring Amount Sleep

Snoring is the condition in which the affected person makes a sound due to the vibrations of the soft tissues in the throat. This vibration happens because of restricted airflow while breathing during sleep. There are different levels of snoring though; it can be mild as well as fatally serious. That is why you should never take the health issue lightly and seek medical attention as soon as the symptoms are noticed.

Levels of Snoring

Snoring, that occurs due to a mild resistance in the airflow within the upper airways, is not associated with any sleeping disorders. However, if the resistance is increased again, the awakening from sleep will get more prominent. Still, this is not that serious to cause a decrease in the level of oxygen in the blood and this condition is known as respiratory effort related arousal.

If the resistance increases even more, it will be hard to maintain the proper oxygen level in the blood as a result of the body’s efforts to provide adequate ventilation. This makes the affected person’s sleep more fragmented and there will be frequent disruptions during sleep. This condition is known as hypopnea syndrome.

Ideal Tests to Measure Sleepiness

MSLT (Multiple Sleep Latency Test)

This test will help to measure how fast someone will fall asleep during the daytime. MSLT is usually conducted after doing a sleep study for the night and the test comprises of at least 4 to 5 naps that last for 20 minutes within a frequent interval of two hours.

The average time required for the person to fall asleep in all these tests are taken into account – 10 minutes or more is considered as the normal time required for a person to fall asleep. If the person takes only 5 minutes of below to fall asleep, it is a sign of excessive sleepiness.

MWT (Maintenance of Wakefulness Test)

This test also measures the daytime sleepiness. Here, the patient is instructed to stay awake and 4 sessions comprising of 40 minutes with an equal interval of two hours is conducted. This test is especially done in employees in the Department Of Transportation like pilots, drivers, etc.

Why Snorers Must be Evaluated

As said, you must not take your snoring problem lightly; it can be an indicator of many serious medical conditions too. For instance, sleep apnea or gasping for breath during sleep may indicate heart-related problems, while jerking movements while sleeping may be a signal of restless leg syndrome or periodic limb movement disorder. Hence, it is necessary to conduct a sleep study to rule out these fatal disorders.

Factors that Make Even Fit People to Snore During Sleep

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Factors Affecting Snoring

Most athletes need at least 7 to 8 hours sleep each night to rejuvenate after a rigorous day spent entirely on training workouts. Rapid Eye Movement (REM) sleep without disruptions like snoring or sleep apnea symptoms makes the body energetic. For the top-flight athletes, only best performance translates to accolades in their respective sport. Henceforth, each athlete should monitor their sleep pattern and quality of sleep, and understand how it affects their performance.

There is a perception that loud snoring only affects those who are overweight and that it is the fat build up in the neck that causes snoring. However, snoring is not a condition that discriminates. It can affect anyone.

In case of professional athletes, the heavy workouts make the body tiresome. That may make the muscles in the throat and neck to relax during sleep. When that happens, the soft tissues in the back of the mouth recede and close down the upper airway partially. The narrowness of the airway in the upper throat makes the tissues to vibrate against the roof of the mouth while breathing.

Moreover, the snoring sound may be soft or loud depending upon the shape of the nasal cavity and the size of the tongue. Notwithstanding nasal congestion, cold, or seasonal allergies that make nighttime breathing tough, even your sleep position may induce snoring. For instance, if you sleep on the back it may make the tongue to recede back and create the constricted airway during sleep.

While it is true that overweight individuals are prone to snore due to the fat build up in the neck, even fit people may suffer from it. Highest earning athletes sleep 10 to 12 hours a day and avoid sleeping in late to get adequate rest. However, just the fact that they stay fit and grow thin with ample exercise does not necessarily mean that snoring may not happen to athletes.

To keep up with the pace of the work and lifestyle, athletes can opt for a snoring guard similar to the sports guards they wear over the teeth to protect from blows to the face. The scientifically proven snoring remedy clears the airway obstructions by advancing the lower jaw, which avoids the tongue relaxing and blockages of the airway. In addition to the mandibular advancement device worn on the jaws, even changing the sleep position would help to alleviate snoring.

A Helpful Guide on Snoring Aids

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Anti Snoring Mouthpieces

Snoring is one of the common sleeping disorders that most people go through. Even though people take this very lightly, there are many serious problems associated with snoring that range from anxiety disorders and heart attacks to even premature death. Hence, it is very crucial to treat snoring and there are many anti snoring devices available in market for this. Below are some details on different types of snoring aids, and a few tips on choosing the best one for your condition.

Anti Snoring Mouthpieces

This is one of the basic choices for snoring aids, as it is readily available and offers instant relief. The main advantage of using an anti snoring mouthpiece is the absence of side effects. This is a proven method to stop snoring as most of them are put through various clinical trials.

You should note that there are two types of mouthpieces; Mandibular advancement device (MAD), which is also known as jaw retaining device, and tongue retainer or tongue retaining device (TRD).

Mandibular Advancement Device

While sleeping, there are chances for your jaws to fall down towards your chest that will obstruct the airway and will cause snoring. This is more likely to happen in back sleepers. These jaw retainers will position your jaw in such a way to stop snoring. Furthermore, you can use this to address Bruxism also.

Tongue Retaining Device

The tongue usually falls back to the throat while sleeping and obstructs the airway to trigger snoring issues. This will depend mainly on the way you sleep. Most people snore because of their tongue, and hence, repositioning the tongue is the best way to deal with the condition. Furthermore, TRD will ensure a relaxed and proper sleep, as there is no need of biting down the device during your sleep.

Snoring Chin Straps

People who snore through the mouth can also use a chin strap to stop snoring instantly. Here, the chin strap will hold your mouth in a closed position and will encourage the air passage through the nose.

A chin strap is usually recommended for patients suffering from sleep apnea. However, before choosing the chin strap, you need to make sure that you are comfortable with it. Besides, consulting with a sleep specialist should be the first move when you suspect having snoring or sleep apnea episodes.

After proper diagnosis of the condition, the doctor would be able to recommend the right remedy for snoring. Sometimes, mild to occasional snoring can be dealt with snore sprays, which are sprayed directly into the nose to keep the airway clear during sleep. A chin strap or a snoring mouth guard will be usually prescribed to those troubled with frequent to severe snoring issues.

Common Sleeping Disorders in Teenagers

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Common Sleeping Disorders

Teens are the hope for a better future and, hence, they must be nurtured well. There are many things though, that can affect your teenager kid, as this is their growing age, and hormones play an important role during this time. It will be better if you keep a tab on their health all the time, especially their sleeping disorders.

If your teen is getting tired often or taking a nap every 3 to 4 hours, and finds it hard to concentrate, they might be suffering from sleeping disorders. Below are the habits and patterns of teenagers that you must keep an eye on to help your kid overcome his/her sleeping problem.

Patterns and Habits

The patterns that you must change in your kid are as follows.

Less Sleep – Your kid sleeps only for 4-5 hours in bed.

Distractions – Your kid is glued to the mobile screen once he/she is in the bed, listening to music, watching movies, playing games, or reading books, etc. They do all these things except sleeping.

Below are the habits that cause sleeping problems.

Academic Pressure – One of the main things that affect your teen’s sleeping pattern is the academic pressure. The extra pressure or stress caused due to this can reduce your kid’s sleeping time and lead to inadequate sleeping patterns.

Coffee – Most of the teens will be addicted to coffee, as it is a stimulant that keeps their mind awake and helps them to study and concentrate for a longer period. However, this characteristic of coffee can also cause insomnia in your kid.

Types of Sleeping Disorders in Teens

Remember that the lack of sleep can cause tiredness in your kid and can affect their performance. The common types of sleeping disorders that can affect teenagers are as follows.

Sleep Apnea – The lack of sleep in the teens can lead to a sleeping disorder called sleep apnea or OSA (Obstructive Sleep Apnea). In this disorder, the breathing of the affected person is frequently disturbed because of the obstruction in their airways during sleeping. Here, the teens pant for breathe after an interval, and this condition can occur around 30 times in an hour.

Insomnia – if the teens are deprived of sleep throughout the day, they are suffering from insomnia. A teenager needs an average sleep time of 8–10 hours a day; any change in this can cause fatigue and results in low concentration and performance.

Treatment

The sleeping disorders in your teens such as sleep apnea can be treated using ant snoring mouth guards and by making effective changes in their lifestyle. Besides, they should also avoid using beverages that contain caffeine like coffee, tea, soft drinks, and diet pills during the night.

5 Juices to Try Out for Relieving Snoring

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Tips To Relieve Snoring

Juices are an excellent alternative for relieving snoring due to their immense therapeutic benefits. Regular consumption of juices can reduce snoring since it will keep the airways clear of any excess mucus. The nutritional value of fruit juices can help in restoring lung health and rejuvenate the tissues and glands located in the airways that can reduce snoring and other breathing problems. However, relying on juices may only reduce snoring and a permanent relief from snoring requires the use of a snore guard along with that. Below are five juices to try for relief from snoring.

Horseradish Juice

Drinking horseradish juice is a highly effective way to reduce snoring. Regular consumption can help in clearing the upper respiratory tract by activating thermogenesis. It can thin down the mucus buildup in the throat and thus remove them from the airways. Horseradish juice is also a viable remedy for treating asthma and allergy. It is recommended to take one glass of horseradish juice mixed with honey or lemon juice daily for reducing snoring.

Onion Juice

Onion juice can act as a decongestant and clear any blocks in the nasal and throat passages. Onion juice can also reduce the mucus buildup in the airways that prevents them from getting constricted thus reducing snoring. It is also known for its anti-inflammatory properties that can prevent the airways from swelling. Daily consuming a half glass of onion juice mixed with lemon juice or honey before going to bed can relieve snoring.

Lemon Juice

Lemon juice is a common drink consumed by most individuals and has a range of benefits for the respiratory system. As a rich source of Vitamin C, drinking lemon juice daily can boost the immune system and keeps infections at bay. It can also clear any respiratory infections much faster, thus eliminating mucus production. Daily consuming one glass of fresh lemon juice before sleep is an effective way to relieve snoring.

Ginger Juice

Ginger juice is yet another effective option for reducing persistent snoring among individuals. It has both anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties that can cure any sort of infections in the respiratory tract. This will prevent the excess production of mucus, thus clearing the nasal and throat passages for alleviating snoring. Drink a half glass of ginger juice combined with lemon or honey can help in reducing snoring.

Vegetables, Lemon, and Ginger Juice

Juice prepared from a combination of lemon, ginger, carrots, and Apple is known for its effectiveness in curing snoring. This juice contains many vital nutrients and can help detoxify the lungs and throat. Regular drinking of this mixed juice can help in keeping the airways clear, thus preventing the onset of snoring.

Why Dentists Recommend Using Snoring Mouthpiece

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Snoring Mouthpiece Benefits

People having apnea episodes often loudly snores and encounters breathing cessations for sleep intervals, which may range from a few minutes to an hour in sleep. Apnea happens when the tongue and soft palates recede in the back of the throat, partially blocking the airway and lessening the oxygen pumped to the inner organs including the heart as well as the brain. In fact, the body wakes up shortly when the oxygen levels in the blood drop too low than normal during sleep apnea.

In fact, apnea episodes may recur many times over in sleep making you feel exhausted the next morning. In addition to loud snoring and sleep lethargy, apnea may lead to a lapse in concentration, headache, insomnia, depression, or even a gradual reduction in sex drive. However, apnea is not a sleep disorder that you cannot diagnose or treat – the aforementioned symptoms can be diagnosed by a medic, who would then suggest remedial action for the condition.

One of the popular remedies to cure mild to moderate sleep apnea is to wear an oral device. This is done to move the mandible forward and henceforth such anti snore guards are called the Mandibular Advancement Devices in Oral Appliance Therapy (OAT). Such stop snoring mouthpieces are front-line remedies for loud snoring and apnea and resembles the mouth guards used by athletes, but only in terms of looks.

Mandibular Advancement Devices aid in preventing the jaw from receding and keeps the airway open during sleep for a better flow of air. Some of the main benefits of Oral Appliance Therapy are as follows:

  • The snore guard is easy and comfortable to wear
  • Approved by Food and Drug Administration
  • Easy and affordable buy over-the-counter
  • Easy to travel with
  • Can be retrofitted into the mouth by a dentist

In fact, the appliance used in Oral Appliance Therapy can be used as a standalone or in conjunction with some of the apnea treatments like Positional Therapy. One of the benefits of trying conjunctive remedies for sleep apnea is changing the posture of sleep in the bed from supine position to side sleeping for improving the airflow. Further, even dentists recommend weight reduction as an effective way to clear apnea due to obesity.

Common Eye Disorders Linked to Obstructive Sleep Apnea

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Obstructive Sleep Apnea

Over time, numerous studies have brought to light the overwhelming effects of sleep apnea and snoring on the body. Newer studies have proven that there exists a relation between sleep apnea and the recurrence of certain eye disorders among individuals. If left untreated, sleep apnea can become complicated and cause adverse effects on the vision and other crucial systems of the body too, such as the cardiac system and respiratory system.

According to the various studies, it has been revealed that common eye disorders like floppy eyelid syndrome and glaucoma occur more in individuals suffering from sleep apnea. Besides, Obstructive Sleep Apnea has also been known to aggravate many of the eye disorders. Some of the common eye disorders linked to Obstructive Sleep Apnea are described below.

Glaucoma

Glaucoma is one disorder directly linked with sleep apnea. It is a common eye disease and the key reason for vision loss on a majority of individuals. Glaucoma occurs mainly due to the damages in the optic nerves because of increase of pressure inside the eyes. For a person with Obstructive Sleep Apnea, the oxygen entering the lungs is less, which can result in a decrease of oxygen reaching the optic nerves. This can result in damages to the optic nerves thus affecting vision.

Papilledema

Yet another eye disorder linked to sleep apnea is papilledema. It is seen mostly in individuals suffering from Obstructive Sleep Apnea. Papilledema can result in the optic disc to become swollen thereby resulting in vision loss. During sleep apnea, the concentrations of CO2 in the blood will increase that can cause the blood vessels to become dilated. This can result in an increase in pressure that can lead to optic disc swelling.

Floppy Eyelid Syndrome

Floppy eyelid syndrome is yet another eye disorder linked with sleep apnea. This condition causes the development of large and floppy eyelids in individuals that can turn inward or outward during sleep. This can affect the lubrication of the eyes, cause irritation, redness, and discharge. It is more seen in individuals having Obstructive Sleep Apnea and obesity, and leaving it untreated can cause serious vision problems.

Minimizing the effects of sleep apnea on vision is possible by addressing the root cause of the disorder by using devices like a snore guard. These devices can decrease the occurrence of sleep apnea thus causing minimum interference with the vision and eyes. Using anti snoring devices like a sleep apnea snore guard is a better alternative than a Continuous Position Airway Pressure (CPAP) machine as CPAP mask can negatively affect eye health as well. However, it is recommended to consult an ophthalmologist immediately if any such eye issues occur.

Are Decongestants an Effective Way to Relieve Snoring?

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Decongestants And Snoring

Several factors contribute to snoring in an individual and nasal congestion is one among them. It occurs mostly during a common cold and can obstruct the airways in the nose making it difficult to breathe. Since snoring is caused mainly by the obstructions to the airways, nasal congestion can also result in inflammations in the throat, thereby contributing to snoring.

Most doctors recommend a decongestant to relieve blocked noses and the snoring issues associated with it. They act quickly to clear any blockages in the nasal and throat cavity and hence are ideal for a fast relief from snoring. However, a permanent remedy for snoring is only possible by using proper anti snoring devices.

How Decongestants Work?

Nasal decongestants are mainly used to relieve the congestion in the nasal canal caused due to a common cold, respiratory infections, or allergies. Congestion occurs when the blood vessels lining the nasal passages become inflamed and obstructs the free flow of air. Decongestants work by relieving the blood vessels and narrowing them, that will minimize the blood supply in the mucous membranes.

Snoring caused by nasal congestion will also reduce quickly when a decongestant is used. Commonly, two types of decongestants are used to treat the condition, and this varies in the method of administering. Oral decongestants can soothe the blood vessels in the nose as well as other parts of the throat, whereas nasal decongestants are used to quickly reduce swelling in the nasal cavity.

Decongestants and Snoring

Nasal and oral decongestants are sometimes recommended by a doctor to relieve snoring. It is prescribed especially if the snoring is caused due to congestion in the nasal or throat cavities. During a common cold or other respiratory infection, the blood vessels lining the nose and throat will swell up and obstruct the airflow. Because of this obstruction, there is greater chance that the breathing will cause the tissues to vibrate thereby resulting in snoring.

By using a decongestant, these inflamed blood vessels are soothed and narrowed quickly that will facilitate free airway and enable the individual to breathe freely. Oral decongestants are most commonly used to cure snoring as they can spread to the nose and throat effectively when compared to nasal decongestants. Upon administering, an oral decongestant will act within thirty minutes and can ease the congestion for about six hours.

Is it an Effective Method to Treat Snoring?

Due to its quick action, most people tend to use decongestants to relieve snoring associated with nasal congestion. However, it is a temporary measure in treating snoring as its effects last for only a few hours, after which the snoring and congestion can return in an individual.

Besides, decongestants also cause a range of side effects over persistent usage such as high blood pressure, headaches, insomnia, etc. As said, a permanent solution to cure snoring is possible only by using the right anti snoring devices such as a mouth guard. These devices treat the root cause of snoring and can permanently cure snoring when used for an extended period.

Easiest of Ways to Clear Snoring at Night

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Clear Snoring At Night

One of the many causes of snoring in people is a receding jaw and excess fat around the neck. The receding jaw will make the tongue to fall backward and that may block the airway in the throat. This will induce snoring at night.

You can wear an anti snore guard going forward to stop snoring if you have a receding jaw. The mouthpiece will advance the lower jaw forward and will clear the airway in the throat thereby stopping nighttime snoring. The mouthpiece can be easily worn before bedtime in the mandible and hence it is also known as the Mandibular Advancement Device for snoring.

However, since the excess fat around the neck is another underlying cause of snoring, many snorers tend to do the exercise to tighten the neck muscles. Snoring as a condition will pervade the sleep but it can be easily remedied by using the convenient remedy and by exercising. Try the below exercises to clear the fat around the neck and sleep better without having to gasp for breath during sleep.

In fact, doing a cheek movement exercise will help in tightening the neck muscles and thereby improve the muscle tone around the neck. For that, hook your left thumb and index finger into the left cheek and gently pull the side of the cheek. In addition, try to resist the pull using the neck muscles and the cheek muscles while you are doing the exercise. Pause the movement of the left cheek for about 5 seconds and then release the cheek. Repeat the easy exercise for snoring several times, preferably 10 times, and in each cheek, to improve breathing at night.

A neck exercise for snoring can be done by sitting on a chair with the back straight. Ensure not to tense any part of the body once you take a seat comfortably and bring down the chin to the neck gently, leaving the eyes looking at a point just in front. Moreover, keep the lips closed and hold the posture for about 10 seconds and then count to 5 seconds more just as you raise the chin up from the neck. Repeat the exercise each time you may choose to do it – ideally thrice during a given day.