It’s time to go to sweep.
Research has shown that snoring can worsen in the winter — now, a sleep expert is sharing a 30-second tongue exercise he says will help you (and everyone around you) catch better ZZZs.
Snoring is caused by air squeezing through a narrow or obstructed airway, and it can be a symptom of a larger problem, like sleep apnea.
A study published last year found that snoring may intensify in the winter for a variety of reasons, including an increase in ambient air pollution; more exposure to secondhand smoke because a person is indoors for longer; viral infection season reaching its peak; and winter weight gain.
“Snoring can be caused by fat accumulation in the neck that narrows the windpipe,” the researchers explained in their findings.
Martin Seeley, CEO of the UK online mattress retailer MattressNextDay, recommends snorers add a 30-second tongue exercise to their nighttime routine.
Close your mouth and move your tongue in one direction 10 times, then in another direction 10 times, and then in a third direction for the final round, he told The Mirror this week.
He claims snorers will witness results after just three nights, boasting a 59% reduction in symptoms.
Earlier this month, Seeley gave a few other suggestions for snorers to T3.com, a UK consumer lifestyle site.
He advised switching to an anti-allergy pillow; avoiding foods with dairy; sleeping with a tennis ball underneath you to ensure you sleep on your side; taking a hot shower before bed; and ditching alcohol.
For its part, the Sleep Foundation has shared several exercises to strengthen the tongue, facial muscles, and throat to help stop snoring.
Snoring is an almost universal occurrence. 45% of adults snore occasionally, while 25% snore habitually, studies have found, with overweight and older people shouldering more of the burden.
Snoring has been found to contribute to the development of diabetes, hypertension, and other diseases.
It’s a key warning sign for sleep apnea, a disorder in which breathing stops and starts many times during slumber.
Approximately 39 million American adults have obstructive sleep apnea, the National Council on Aging reports.
Snoring is exhibited by up to 94% of sleep apnea patients, the organization notes.