Keep your love alive despite snoring
A good advice: Before you start a new relationship, you should definitely sleep with the new partner for a few times – and with “sleeping” I do not mean having sex, no, really literally sleeping i.e. spending the whole night together in one bed:
You will get to know completely new sides of the person aside you which you otherwise never would have experienced under normal daily life circumstances. The fight for the shared blanket or for the maximum space in the common bed reveals a lot about the subconsciousness.
Yet snoring becomes the real challenge for the relationship – this makes some people soon regret their partner choice. To save your partnership, it is important to establish some communication rules on how to deal with the nightime disturbance in a constructive manner, so that it doesn’t become a long term seed of discord.
If your partner snores, remember that you are not alone. In every sixth relationship, snoring is a source of constant quarrel and dispute. Partners of heavy snorers lose statistically up to 2 hours of sleep per night.
Silence is silver, speech is gold
In the beginning, you will try to keep the house peace by ignoring each other’s bad sides and not mentioning them. But this is only a help for a short period. In the long run it is always much better to address problems directly. But what communication strategy is helpful?
Don’t make accusations! They are perceived as personal attacks and therefore blocked and rejected, so you fail to reach your goal.
Make clear to your partner that you both are affected by his/her snoring, not only you alone as the listener. Because snoring is usually a health hazard for both sides, especially for the snorer himself.
Explain the possible health consequences of snoring: a deficiency of blood oxygen during sleep, which has a damaging effect in the long term. Not only definite breathing pauses, so-called sleep apnea, are harmful, already mere snoring alone can end in a dangerous reduction of the sleep breathing and should be observed carefully.
Suggest to your partner measuring and recording the snoring sounds by using a sleep tracking app. Many of them are often available for free in their basic function.
The snorer may not be aware of the daytime effects of his breathing restrictions. Tell him/her she/he shall observe his/her daily state of vigilance, alertness, agility, energy level, and soon the snorer will often notice lacks and losses in these qualities.
Propose answering a sleep questionnaire, many of them can be found easily on the internet. Standard forms are the Epworth Sleepiness Scale ESS and the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index PSQI and the Berlin questionnaire for detecting sleep apnea. But there are many more, search on google with the keywords “sleep quality questionnaire vigilance daytime tiredness”
Observe your partner’s sleep: remark
- when does the snoring occur, in which sleeping position (on the back, stomach, side)
- is the mouth open (breathing through the mouth or nose?)
- while snoring does your partner lie in an unnatural position, e.g. very twisted?
- does he/she lie very curled up, or the neck too much bent forward, so that the flow of breath may be constricted.
In the end, if there is really the suspicion of a breathing impairment existing, get yourself a pulse oximeter (finger) for home-measuring of the oxygen saturation. But don’t take the cheapest product, make sure that it is a certified medical product. Important: it shall record the oxygen saturation over the entire night (e.g. via a connected app). The results should include following data:
- the average oxygen level
- the lowest oxygen level
- the number of decreases by 4% per hour.
First steps for self-help: more physical activity and sports by day, no late meals and alcohol (about 4 hours before bedtime), cool and humid air in the sleeping room, changing the sleeping position (i.e. avoiding supine position), keep a straight natural posture, choose better cushions and mattress.
December 23, 2022