Apparently, I Snore

When I picture myself sleeping, I look exactly like this in my brain:

Sleeping Beauty

Sleeping Beauty

I’m peaceful, serene, quiet, and ladylike — a slumbering princess.

But my bubble has been burst rather noisily lately. Ever since I was informed that my light, sometimes snoring has become loud, almost-every-time snoring. My husband gave me this news delicately — well, as delicately as someone I fondly call “Spock” can deliver bad news — but my kids readily confirmed his report.

And then it was further verified during a recent women’s retreat hotel stay, when I queried a roommate and she had to admit that my overnight growling had indeed reached her ears. *sigh*

So what’s a lady to do?

Indeed, plenty of couples deal with this very issue. While husbands are often accused of snoring like freight trains, plenty of wives engage in their own noise-making while they sleep. And that snoring can disrupt a spouse’s ability to get to sleep or remain asleep at night. Moreover, I suspect those rumbling sounds trumpeting through my nose at night don’t exactly scream, “Who’s your lover, baby!” It’s a wonder my husband still finds me sexy, when I snore like this Disney character instead:

Dwarf

Sneezy Dwarf (I think)

I consulted the handy-dandy WebMD for information on what exactly causes snoring. Of course, the noise itself occurs when the flow of air through the mouth and nose are blocked in some way. But here are some reasons why that might happen:

  • Obstructed nasal passages — which might occur only during allergy seasons or a sinus infection. Or it could result from a deviated septum or nasal polyp.
  • Poor muscle tone — not your biceps, though. We’re talking too-relaxed throat and tongue, which can collapse into the airway. Besides deep sleep, alcohol, and sleeping pills, normal aging diminishes that muscle tone. (Oh joy.)
  • Bulky throat tissue — which can be a problem for people who have large tonsils or adenoids, or those who are simply overweight.
  • Long soft palate and/or uvula — who knew? The uvula is that dangling thing in the back of your throat, and apparently when it and your palate vibrate and bump against each other, the airway becomes obstructed.

If you know what’s causing your snoring, perhaps you can address it. For instance, if you’re carrying way too many extra pounds, losing some might open up your airways. If you have a nasal polyp, a doctor can likely address that issue and help you shrink it. If you’re drinking alcohol too close to bedtime, you can drink it earlier or set it aside altogether, for the sake of better sleep for you and your spouse.

A few issues, though, you may be stuck with, like aging. If you’ve found the Fountain of Youth, let me know, but I suspect we’re all simply stuck with getting older year by year by year. I love the wisdom that comes with my ever-increasing age, but not so much this snoring part. Also, when you have allergies or a sinus infection, it is what it is — annoying and temporary.

Although I do wonder if I have naturally poor muscle tone in my throat and tongue, are there exercises I can do? What would those look like? A-one and a-two and a-three…

Some people swear by sleeping with a mouth guard or nasal strips or with a certain type of pillow. Side sleeping is less likely to result in snoring, so some suggest taping tennis balls to the back of your jammies for a few nights to retrain yourself to sleep on your side.

Or you can go the more standard route of having your spouse shove you a few times in the middle of the night to turn you over and stop your snoring. That’s been my approach to silence Spock’s occasional snoring.

His approach with me? I guess we’re working on one. Because I’d honestly like to stop. I really don’t think that snoring like a saber-toothed tiger in my marriage bed does wonders for my sex appeal.

Thus I’m inviting your collective marital wisdom!

Have you struggled with one or both spouses snoring in your marriage? What steps have you taken to address it? What suggestions can you share with others who are trying to stop the snore fest and get their sexy back?

13 thoughts on “Apparently, I Snore

  1. Chad

    I had surgery to correct snoring because of a previous girlfriends complaints, that was a big mistake.
    I still snore and have horrible allergy now. The first time my wife slept next to me she snored and I laughed and thought it was endearing. Neither of us mind each others “sleep noises” and miss them when we are apart. It is part of life and I love my wife. She only really snores now if she has had a drink or is pregnant.

  2. Jemmie

    My sister snored like one of those super loud coffee makers for years. Then she found out that if she blows her nose really well just before going to bed she doesn’t snore at all. (Too bad she didn’t figure that out sooner.

  3. Heather

    I think earplugs saved our marriage. My husband snores like a freight train, and I snore when I have a cold or allergies. We both sleep with earplugs, and 99% of the time, that settles the issue. It might not be sexy, but it works.

  4. gurian6

    My husband snored all of our marriage until two years ago when he had a sleep study done. He had sleep apnea, was prescribed a C-PAP machine, and viola, no more snoring. He has become a major promoter of sleep studies and several of our family and friends had them done and discovered that they also had sleep apnea.

  5. Lisa

    I have read that singing is one of the best exercises that one can do to whip those muscles into shape. Whether it’s true…?

  6. Erin

    My husband is the snorer in our “marriage bed”, and today, he finally called to see about getting a sleep study to (hopefully) rule out sleep apnea. He’s a smoker, too, and I’ve read that can contribute to snoring. We take turns moving to the couch. (And I SWEAR that, as soon as I make my move to get out of bed, he stops snoring! Ugh!) Some nights, one of us just starts out on the couch to avoid the 1:00 a.m. disturbance altogether. Good luck!

  7. pumpernickel

    When I stopped eating foods containing all grains (wheat, oats, corn, etc.) and stopped consuming processed sugar, I stopped snoring completely and got the best rest of my life. Until Thanksgiving and Christmas when I was sucked back into the swirling vortex of holiday food. Now I need to start eating healthy again. I apparently snore every night…

  8. Other J

    I am a registered nurse. I also was a horrible snorer. I had a sleep study and was diagnosed with obstructive sleep apnea. I now have a CPAP and snore no more!!! PLUS I sleep so much better and wake quite rested! There are many sleep apnea websites and they have a questionnaire to see if you need a sleep study. Here is a link to one such site: http://www.talkaboutsleep.com/sleep-self-assessment-quiz/

  9. Steve Stamm

    My wife (she denies it) and I both snore. I had a sleep study and was prescribed a C-Pap machine that works wonderfully well. One simple helpful thing that I did before that was to notice that I mainly snored when I was on my back. I got a large tube sock and put several tennis balls in it and pinned it to the back of a T-Shirt or a sweat-shirt (depending on the season). When I slept, the balls kept me from sleeping on my back because it was uncomfortable and the snoring was greatly reduced. I woke up a few times with the shirt off and across the room! I solved that by pinning it between my legs so that I’d have to be awake to get the shirt off. – Steve

  10. Aaron

    I snore enough to wake up my wife occasionally. So we were looking for a solution. On a suggestion, recently I have tried valor essential oil blend (From Amazon). I put it on my big toes at bed and it seems to be helping a lot. I have been using it for about a week and 5 out of the 7 nights I didn’t snore. It’s a little expensive at $30 but if she gets better sleep I will try anything. Hopefully the good results continue!

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