Snoring or sleep apnea is a sleep disorder that can lead to serious health problems than you might have thought about. It occurs when there is an obstruction in the breathing passage and the patient stops breathing multiple times during sleep; when breathing starts again after a pause it is accompanied with a choking or a loud snort. There are two main types of sleep apnea- obstructive and central. Snoring is a chronic condition that requires your attention, it is because snoring disrupts your sleep and your brain does not get sufficient oxygen.
Additionally, patients suffering from sleep apnea lead a poor health condition and may feel tired all day. If undiagnosed, snoring can cause headaches, depression, diabetes, stroke and even heart attacks or failures. To diagnose this problem the physicians recommend medical treatments, anti snoring devices, weight loss, side sleeping and anti snoring pillows. You would be amazed to learn the health benefits of an anti snoring pillow.
According to the researchers and doctors, sleeping position is directly linked with snoring. We all have different sleeping postures, some of us sleep on our backs, and some are side sleepers or stomach sleepers, whereas, the rest flips position multiple times throughout the night.
The intensity of snoring correlates with the sleeping positions. The orientation of head and alignment of neck either increase or decrease the intensity of snoring. The back sleepers tend to relax their jaws and the jaw muscles, and as a result, the mouth is left wide open and the tongue restricting the air-passage. When the mouth is open it doubles up the vibration leading to an unpleasant noise of snoring.
Sleeping on your stomach and side helps to limit snoring up to some extent because these positions prevent your jaw from falling forward. Side sleeping side minimizes the chances of snoring but it is difficult to stick to one side all night. In fact, if you switch sides several times you can’t keep a track of it in your sleep. Sleeping on your stomach is not recommended because it stresses on your arms and shoulders resulting in pain in the back, arms and shoulder.
Anti snoring devices, such as jaw straps or chin straps, nose clips and mouthpieces do help in most cases, however, using these on daily basis can be difficult. You would agree with me on this. It is extremely uncomfortable to sleep with your nose clipped or with the mouthpieces. CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) machines are worth buying but are expensive. Technically, to get used to these products you will need a longer duration, ranging from days to several weeks.
To combat with sleep apnea you may opt for the anti snoring pillows. These are not new in the market. There are several manufacturers who have been in the business of making such pillows to help you sleep better. Today we will discuss how you can grab a healthy and happy sleep with the help of an anti snoring pillow.
Is There a Pillow that Helps with Snoring?
The answer is yes, there is. We have just learned how sleeping position is directly linked with snoring. The anti snoring pillows help cradle your head in a safer position to eliminate the basic problem. Sleeping on your back is ideal and most common because it helps you relax your body. Unfortunately, sleep apnea patients are prohibited to sleep on their backs, it is because this particular position leaves your jaw open that causes snoring.
Anti snoring pillows are designed to help you sleep either on your back or side without feeling uncomfortable. The pillows are available in various shapes and sizes within your budget. In this article, I will discuss the types of anti snoring pillows and their mechanisms.
Best Pillows for Snoring Problems
You will be amazed to see the variety of the anti snoring pillows. There is a possibility that you might be confused when choosing the best anti snoring pillow for yourself. To ease your buying process you may refer to the detailed information provided below:
U and V-Shaped Pillows
These pillows resemble the shape of the English alphabets, ‘U' and ‘V'. The cushioned midsection cradles your head and the extended wings on either side fix the position of your head. It supports all kind of sleepers but is more effective for side sleeping. You can easily slip your arm and hold it for support or to grab more comfortable sleep at night.
These pillows look like the travel pillows. The only difference is that the u-shaped orthopedic pillows are for therapeutic purposes to treat sleep apnea.
U-shaped and v-shaped pillows are also effective for cervical syndrome and known for preventing stiff neck and back pain.
The wave contour pillows are one of the most common pillows preferred by the sleep apnea patients. The wavy surface supports your head, neck and shoulder.
It is ideal for the side as well as the back sleepers; you can freely move your head, while your head remains in a comfortable position. The Orthopedic curved contour is effective for preventing open jaws in your sleep and also helps in easy breathing.
These pillows adapt to your shoulder, back and neck contours, relax the muscles and give enhanced support with gentle alignment. The contour pillows are available in higher and lower contours. Before you order one, you must check which type is more suitable for you.
The third type is the triangular wedge pillows. Wedge pillows are designed to provide upright support for your head, whereas, the gradually inclining lower part supports your back and shoulders. Wedge pillows are either simple or can be found in contouring shape.
Pillow wedge for sleep apnea and snoring has been proved to be most fruitful. It is because these pillows help open airway passages. Therefore, a wedge pillow allows more oxygen to enter the lungs and helps reduce snoring.
The slope prevents respiratory obstruction, sleep apnea, pressure points, lung congestion and also acid reflux symptoms and stimulates blood circulation.
Wedge pillows are user-friendly and support all kind of sleeping postures. You can also use it to lie down and watch television or to read books.
The foam pillows are either made of memory foam or latex foam and they resemble the traditional pillows, however, these are specifically designed for treating sleep apnea. The head nestling area in these pillows gently supports the head and tilts it slightly to clear the air passages. The lower portion supports the neck and the shoulder.
The u-shaped, v-shaped, contour and wedge pillows are often made of foam.
When you want to purchase foam pillows for snoring, make sure to ask the retailer more about the product and its mechanism. Finalize the deal only after you read the reviews left by the consumers.
These pillows support back, stomach and the side sleepers.
The CPAP pillows are manufactured to eliminate snoring problems which most of the traditional pillows fail to do. These pillows are specifically designed to accommodate the CPAP tubing and the mask.
The uniquely four cut-out sides make way for the mask exhalation ports without causing any obstruction and also support the side sleepers. The cushioned head nestling area comfortably positions the head and gives proper support to the cervical spine.
If you are a CPAP user, these pillows are highly recommended.
The modern technology has given birth to a new type of pillow to fight sleep apnea. These smart pillows are operated electronically and offer an array of features.
Such pillows come with sensors to monitor the pattern and noise of snoring and often inflate or deflate automatically to adjust the position of your head. Sleeping on these pillows ensure a sound sleep.
The smart pillows are operated by apps and often require charging. These are comparatively new in the market but gaining rapid popularity.
The full-body pillows are large pillows made for promoting healthy sleeping. The full-body pillows come in ‘J’, ‘U’ and ‘C’ shapes.
The contour shape conforms to the natural shape of the body; helps in spine, hips and neck alignments. The curvy shape provides support to your head, shoulder and legs.
The pillows are not only helpful to combat snoring but also ideal for the pregnant women. The distinctive design of the full-body pillows prevents chronic pain conditions and poor sleeping postures.
Now that you have learned about different types of anti snoring pillows, you must ensure the product you are buying has the following qualities:
• The pillow and the cover are made of hypoallergenic materials. Cotton and bamboo fibers are the most commonly used materials.
• The pillow cover is washable.
• The fabric is breathable to eliminate heat.
• The size is good enough for providing support to your head, neck and shoulder.
• Gives good cervical alignment.
The best pillows for snoring must address the main issue, i.e. correcting sleeping postures. I have elaborated different types of anti snoring pillows in the previous segment of this article which you can refer to and decide which one is the best for you. Ultimately, you have to feel comfortable whichever type you purchase.
I will conclude by saying that an anti snoring pillow might not be the ultimate solution to stop sleep apnea, however, it will definitely limit the intensity of snoring. Together with medical help and an anti snoring pillow, I am sure you will easily get rid of the annoying problem.