Wedge Pillows: Do They Help With Snoring Problems?

by | Pillows, Snoring Aid | 0 comments

If morning comes around, and you still feel as if you haven’t gotten a decent night’s sleep despite all your attempts to be comfortable, you may want to consider how disruptive your snoring (or your partner’s snoring) is in relation to the rest you are receiving. There is an incredible array of products marketed that claim to aide in or even stop the snoring. But the question truly remains if they are effective and who they best work for.

Wedge pillows are marketed as a side sleeping aide to help in sleep posture and airway support to negate some of the reasons snoring occurs in the first place. Their various designs are considered corrective in nature to eliminate snoring issues caused by posture, rather than underlying medical causes- although they may provide relief for these as well. If you have come across these types of pillows and ever questioned: does a wedge pillow help with snoring? Then the following information may help you in your consideration of such a tool.

What Causes Snoring?

There are actually many, many reasons you (or your partner) may snore, and one way to help alleviate snoring is to first determine why you snore in the first place. Some underlying causes may have a simple solution, whereas others may need the direction of a physician. No matter what the cause, finding a good snoring aid that does the trick may be exactly what you need to get the rest you deserve.

• Nasal Passage Obstruction

Deviated septums, allergies, sickness, and other issues may block your ability to breathe through your nose and cause you to breathe through your mouth. When you do so, you create a greater vibration of tissues within your airways, which may cause you to snore.

• Soft Palate Obstruction

Your soft palate is a muscle at the back of your throat that separates your mouth from your nasal passages. If this, and the attached uvula are too large, or become swollen for any reason, it will cause a restriction of airways and/or vibrate as you breathe- which results in snoring.

• Narrowed Airways

Narrowed airways are a common cause of snoring. This occurs when the tonsils are too large or swollen, problems with the soft palate occur (as described above), the base of the tongue is too thick, or slips backward as you sleep. Since you will have to work harder to draw in and expel air during these situations, snoring may occur as air passes over and causes vibrations of the soft tissues.

• Narrowed Airways

Narrowed airways are a common cause of snoring. This occurs when the tonsils are too large or swollen, problems with the soft palate occur (as described above), the base of the tongue is too thick, or slips backward as you sleep. Since you will have to work harder to draw in and expel air during these situations, snoring may occur as air passes over and causes vibrations of the soft tissues.

• Sleep Stages

Your sleep stages influence how relaxed your body becomes through the night and many times as a person falls into deep REM sleep. The body sends signals for muscle relaxation, and this may influence a loosening of the tongue, palate, and throat soft tissues- which may lead to a more narrowed airway.

• Sleep Positions

As your head falls back or forward, it may compromise your airways due to the curve of your neck. Lying on your back also allows for gravity to pull your palate, tonsils, and tongue backward- narrowing the airways.

• Alcohol and Medication

Alcohol and medication often force your muscles into a relaxed state, which results in the above-mentioned situations.

• Sleep Apnea and other Medical Conditions

Sleep Apnea is a medical condition that disrupts your breathing through the night, and it can also include disruptive snoring as part of the diagnosis. Although medical conditions need to be evaluated and diagnosed by a doctor, some sleep aids may help in their alleviation.

What is a Wedge Pillow?

A wedge pillow is exactly described how it sounds. This is a wedge-shaped pillow that is large enough to be used as a snoring pillow of some sort. These pillows are constructed specifically to support side sleepers in a more angled position. They are built using materials that are both supportive and contouring to hold the body in place, in spinal alignment,  and also allow for airways to be unobstructed by body posture. They are usually quite large, measuring at least a couple of feet wide and long, and it also provides a gradual incline for your upper body to rest upon.

Who Should Consider a Wedge Pillow?

If your snoring stems from body posture and obstructed airways, then an anti-snore wedge may be worth considering to help position your body in a manner that best supports your breathing. Wedge pillows, when used in this manner, can very much so help with snoring as it supports the upper body, neck, and head in such as way that soft tissues are unable to block passages.

This can help with sinus issues as pressure will be relieved, and the build-up can more easily drain away rather than sit within your sinus cavities. This is also true of sicknesses that cause tissues to swell as blood flow is better supported. Wedge pillows can also help with acid reflux, certain hernias, and heartburn – to name a few situations that can cause a restless or uncomfortable night.

Although snoring concerns that are a byproduct of medical conditions and/or diseases should always be closely monitored and addressed by a doctor- a wedge pillow may greatly reduce your discomfort. If you know that this may be an underlying cause, be sure to check with your physician about their recommendations before introducing new or different care into your routine.

Conclusion

In short, to answer the question: yes, a wedge pillow has the capabilities to help with snoring. This is, of course, dependent on the underlying cause of the snoring, as well as if it is used correctly. It may not be the best solution for everyone, nor it may be the only solution, but if you have tried various snoring aids and still struggle with this problem, a wedge may be a product worth trying.