Monday, 27 May 2013

Lifestyle Changes for Better Sleep

Snoring occurs for both men and women and is increasingly becoming a leading cause of fatigue and exhaustion cases that require medical intervention. Research has shown that apart from health conditions, individuals accustomed to lack of or minimal exercise, coupled with rich foods, gallons of alcohol and endless packs of cigarettes often snore in their sleep.

There are medical methods of dealing with snoring. However, before looking into them, one may want to consider looking into less expensive solutions. Weight gain is one factor that affects snoring. It could either cause someone who never snored before to begin snoring in their sleep, or it could cause someone who snored on and off to snore more frequently when they sleep. This is because weight gain occurs all over the body even if it may be easier to spot it around some parts of the body more than others. 

Engaging in an exercise regime that facilitates the loss of extra pounds can help reduce the frequency of snoring. Weight training as part of an exercise regime is just as useful as aerobic exercise as it strengthens muscles, especially those around the upper back, chest and neck. This greatly improves breathing, as the added muscular support keeps the airways open when breathing.

An increase in the intake of fresh fruits and vegetables helps the body in the breakdown, use and elimination of excess fats and oils. Fruits and vegetables also help in the oxygenating of the blood, which is a key element in the clearing of bodily toxins among other cellular functions. Fresh fruit also contains natural sugar that is easily absorbed and regulated by the body compared to refined sugar that often does not get broken down completely, leading to fat deposits in different parts of the body.

Processed and canned foods often contain preservatives and artificial flavourings and sweeteners, which have been shown to increase risks of illness and disease in the human body. One should, instead, increase the intake of natural whole foods and water, as well as regulate food portions.

Consciously regulating alcohol and tobacco use is by far more effective than leaving social encounters to chance. One may not avoid social interaction, but one can avoid excessive drinking and smoking during these encounters.

It is important that one makes positive lifestyle adjustments that gradually improve one’s life as time passes. These adjustments will consequently reduce or eliminate snoring altogether, allowing for better rest at night and higher productivity during the day.

Thursday, 16 May 2013

Why Do We Snore?

Young children are always playing one version or another of pretend games. One odd thing occurs when they pretend to be asleep; they embellish their faux-sleeping with snores, some loud and long and some accompanied by whistling as they exhale. This may perhaps have been inspired by cartoons, TV shows, and movies since animators, script writers, and directors have often used snoring sleepers as the perfect indicator of deep sleep in characters within the story.

Although some time back snoring was often viewed as a source of humour and generally harmless, research has revealed that there is more to snoring than meets the eye. It is emerging that snoring greatly affects the wellness and well-being of those who snore as well as those who sleep next to them, taking a physical as well as emotional toll on everyone. It is therefore important to understand the causes of snoring in order to be able to manage it.

Snoring is essentially caused by the vibration of soft tissues in the nasal passage. What happens, biologically speaking, is that the nasal airways relax and the upper airways collapse to the extent that breathing causes the soft tissues to vibrate. It is triggered by different factors. Some of these are physical, others health related, while others are lifestyle related. Physical causes of snoring have to do with the positioning of one’s body during sleep. For instance, people who sleep on their backs are more likely to snore. Elderly people also generally tend to snore due to muscular weakness which comes with age.

Health related causes of snoring fall into various categories. The first category consists of factors that cause the blockage or stuffiness of nasal passages such as allergies or minor ailments like colds and flus. Coupled with these are illnesses that affect upper respiratory passages such as bronchitis or nasal polyps. People who are obese tend to snore heavily in their sleep too. People who use sedatives or those who may have temporary prescription medication that contains some form of sedative or another are also likely to snore in their sleep in the duration that they are taking the medication.

In recent years, snoring has increased among the human populace. Research has shown that changes in lifestyle, eating, drinking, and socialising habits have caused snoring to be on the rise. Among these factors are lack of exercise, high levels of alcohol consumption, smoking, and overeating.

All these factors and more tend to lead to even further health and mental conditions and risks, the biggest being obstructive sleep apnoea and fatigue in adults. In children it's attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, as well as decreased mental functionality and learning ability.