Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Sawing logs: Snoring, your love life, and some options to sleeping alone.
Here’s a conversation my spouse and I have had several times in the past year or so:
“How did you sleep, dear?”
“Ah, um, well...”
“Damn--Did I do it again?”
“Uh, you know, it’s no big deal.”
“How many times did you try to wake me?”
“Two, maybe three. It’s no big deal, really.”
It is a big deal, though, when your mate has to nudge you ‘two or three’ times during the night, which likely means eight or ten times, when you were sawing logs and keeping them awake. Snoring has become the nighttime national epidemic, robbing our spouses of sleep, stealing quality sleep from us, and signaling at least potentially serious health problems such as sleep apnea. Plus, snoring can interfere with our marital bliss in the one place we most associate with that emotion, our bedrooms. Here are a few alternatives to this raucous, maddening development, and nocturnal marriage threat.

For those of us, myself included, who prefer to awaken with our mate beside us, hopefully well rested, here are a few things to try:

1 An oral appliance which is fit to you, and which must be checked periodically by a dentist. This hardware, like a mouthpiece you might have used in high school football, extends the tongue and soft palate to, hopefully, eliminate snoring.

2 Medical procedures such as a UPPP, Somnoplasty, CPAP.

3 A simple yet effective treatment, and one to try first, may be the old fashioned method of losing weight.
Cut down or eliminate alcohol consumption, especially within four hours of bedtime. The same goes for sedatives, oddly enough. Easy on the sleeping pills; they may be having the opposite effect.
Pillows: if you tend to roll onto your back, prop one on either side, so you stay lying on your side.
Have an allergy, cold, nasal interruption for any reason? That can easily make you snore, even if you never did. Address the symptoms, and get some sleep.

Snoring needn’t come between you and a good night’s sleep. It needn’t become an issue between you and your mate, either. Simply ignoring the snoring monster is a no brainer: don’t do it. Often, just actively seeking a cure for snoring is enough to elicit your mate’s gratitude and help. And if the snoring persists, or gets worse, it might be time to seek medical advice. It could be obstructive sleep apnea, a potentially serious health risk.
If your morning conversation is filled with dread about your nocturnal lumbering activity, your raucous imitation of a sawmill at full tilt, and you repeatedly awake to find your mate gone, off to another, more peaceful part of the house, try the tips above, and sweet dreams.

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