Your sleep position plays an important role in how well you sleep. Changing your body position can make all the difference between having a good night’s sleep or not.
Several studies have shown that individuals who sleep on their back are more likely to snore or suffer from sleep apnea than their counterparts who slept on their side. This is generally due to the affects of gravity as the soft tissue and tongue fall back and obstruct the airway.
When lying on their side the throat soft tissue, seems to be more stable, and the airway stays open to allow the free flow of air without being obstructed.
If an individual suffers from a receding jaw, sleeping on their back will definitely cause them to snore as the physiological structure of the jaw is already putting pressure on the airway. While several studies have shown that individuals who already suffer from sleep apnea are twice as likely to have apnea episodes when sleeping on their back.
‘So sewing tennis balls into the back of a snoring partners pyjamas might not be far off.’
So is there a better position for sleep?
Sleeping on your stomach apparently is better for your digestion but comes with the negatives by putting undue strain on your lower back.
However 41% of 1000 people who took part in a sleep study slept in a fetal position. Although this seems to be the healthier option, sleeping on your right side has better health benefits that the left. Sleeping on your left side can cause stress to vital organs like your liver, stomach and lungs.
So choosing the fetal position facing the right side has the best health benefits and will help you reduce the probability of snoring or sleep apnea.
Changing a sleep position is easier said than done!
Some habits die hard and changing your sleep position can be one of those habits that you have very little control over. All is not lost for those sleeping on their back and dealing with a snoring problem and there are plenty of snoring solutions available to choose from.
Recommended solutions include:
Anti-snoring mouthpieces for men and for women – by SnoreMeds
Pillows that hold your head in a position that opens the airway and reduces snoring.
Tongue retaining devices – by Goodmorning Snore Solution