Snoring—that odd hoarse sound that some people make when they sleep—is one of the funnier quirks that humans can have. This being said, some people find it embarrassing and sometimes our spouses or partners find the sound keeps them from enjoying high-quality sleep. Beyond these inconveniences, snoring can be an indication of an underlying health problem as well as something that highlights the breathing and jaw problems modern-day humans are facing en masse.

When it comes to dealing with and eradicating your snoring several short-term approaches deal with the snoring itself. These are techniques that when employed stop that strange sound from coming out of your throat as you sleep. Longer-term solutions which aim to resolve the cause of the snoring, but take time to affect will also be explored. Likely, you will want to choose at least one short-term and one long-term method of coping with your snoring. Even though the longer-term methods don’t have immediate results, they address the problems that your snoring is indicating exist in your mouth, throat, or nose.

Short-Term Solution #1: Sleep On Your Side

Sleeping on your side will keep your body, neck, and head on an angle that reduces, and often eliminates snoring. If you struggle to find comfort and fall asleep while lying on your side, you’re not alone, but there are ways you can train yourself to sleep on your side. Of course, if your snoring is the result of an underlying condition, you may just be masking the symptoms. It is always ideal to seek out a medical professional if you are concerned about this.

Short-Term Solution #2: Use A Chin Strap

Chin straps are items that you wear to bed, some of them attach to CPAP masks (which are often prescribed to people with sleep apnea). They work by holding your jaw closed, and therefore, forcing you to breathe through your nose. CPAP mask chin straps are effective at eliminating snoring as the sound is most often caused by breathing through our mouths as we sleep in combination with individual physiological characteristics. This solution might not work for everyone as some people breathe through their mouths while they sleep because their nasal passages are swollen or blocked from allergies or sickness.

Long-Term Solution #1: Learn To Breathe Properly

It turns out most of us have been breathing incorrectly our entire lives. This results in poor breathing habits that continue while we sleep and weakness in our jaws, necks, and throats. At the most basic, proper breathing is deep and slow through our noses. This being said, proper breathing is much more complicated than that and needs to be practiced regularly to improve the damage done to our bodies from a lifetime of terrible breathing. This solution will not only reduce snoring if practiced over time, but it will also provide many more health benefits as more oxygen will be absorbed with each breath you take. When you breathe through your nose, you get 30% more oxygen. That’s a big difference.

Long-Term Solution #2: Strengthen Your Jaw

It turns out that the amount of soft, cooked foods we eat in modernity has had a huge impact on the strength of our jaws. The lack of chewing required by the modern diet results in stunted bone development in the dental arches and sinus cavities. This leads to chronic nasal congestion. Fun fact, this is largely responsible for having crooked teeth—if your dental arches and sinus cavities are fully developed all of your teeth (including your wisdom teeth) will fit comfortably in your mouth without any crowding. Some devices and exercises can increase strength in these areas. Chewing more hard and raw foods is also effective.

Long-Term Solutions #3: Seek Medical Attention

There are many possible reasons for snoring and the above solutions only address some of them. Visiting a medical professional to have your sleep monitored and your nose, mouth, and throat examined is a valuable precaution to take no matter how serious your snoring is. It is safe to assume that if you are snoring there is at least one thing gone awry. It is wise to rule out any medical conditions early on.

With the above solutions, you should be able to address your immediate concern about reducing or eliminating your snoring. You should also be able to begin addressing the underlying causes of your snoring and reaping other health benefits along the way. As with all medical-related advice available online, it is important to remember that every person is different and so every case is also different. Always seek the input of a medical professional if you are feeling uncertain or less than perfectly healthy.