Snoring is a sleep problem that affects millions of people in the world. It places a strain on relationships, interferes with sleep, and may cause many other problems such as waking up with a sore throat.
There are lots of different things people can do to try and control their snoring. One approach is to attempt to remedy the problem by using a spray before going to sleep.
How good are these sprays, though, and can they really stop you from snoring.? The truth is, anti-snoring sprays work for a minority of people but, for most snorers, they are probably not the best option to choose.
What Will I Learn?
Anti-Snore Spray Vs Nasal Spray: Which Works Best?
There are two main ways to use a spray to try and stop snoring. The first one is to aim a special anti-snore spray at the tissues at the back of the throat. The second option is to use a nasal spray.
In both cases, there are many different types and brands of spray to choose from. The name on the bottle may vary.
So can the quantity and combination of ingredients but all anti-snore sprays aim to do the same thing. The way nasal sprays work is more complicated.
However, the main thing to know is anti-snore sprays work on the soft tissue at the back of the throat. Nasal sprays aim to relieve nasal congestion.
Although nasal congestion is a problem that’s typically due to allergies or a symptom of a disease, such as cold or flu, blockages in the nasal passages have the potential to cause or worsen snoring.
So which type of spray offers the most value? That depends on the nature of your snoring.
Anti-snore sprays are for people who snore through their mouths. This type of spray is made especially for people who snore. It does not serve any other purpose.
The noise we call snoring typically occurs due to airway obstructions that happen when the tissue relaxes at the back of the throat. To problem is made worse by the tongue becoming so relaxed it falls backward, further reducing the diameter of the throat.
If you have ever flown, you may be familiar with the way air turbulence can shake a plane. In a similar way, airway obstructions at the back of the throat cause turbulence that makes the soft tissue vibrate.
Most anti-snore sprays are designed to lubricate the tissues at the back of the throat. Such sprays often contain glycerin or alcohol along with essential oils such as peppermint and menthol.
In most cases, you need to use this type of spray 30 minutes before going to bed. There’s nothing complicated about it. All you do is open your mouth, as if you were sitting in a dentist’s chair or about to yawn, and squirt the spray at the back of your throat.
Breathing through a partially-blocked nose can cause or worsen snoring by causing extra suction. This can make your uvula and soft palate begin to vibrate.
If the nasal blockage is very bad, nose breathing may not be possible. This will force you to breathe through your mouth, further increasing the likelihood of snoring.
If the nasal blockage has a physical cause, such as a bent septum, nasal sprays may provide little or no help. When the congestion is a reaction to dust, allergies, or infection, using a spray may be a good way to keep it under control.
However, choosing the right nasal spray may not be easy. There are several different types. It’s not a case of “one size fits all.”
6 Popular Types of Nasal Spray:
- Antihistamine: Best for controlling nasal blockages caused by allergies or reactions to dust. These sprays work by controlling the inflammation caused when histamine is released as part of the immune response.
- Steroid: Like antihistamine nasals sprays, steroid sprays reduce the inflammation that causes congestion. They are also good for treating non-allergic rhinitis or nasal polyps.
- Decongestant: These sprays can be good for delivering short-term relief from a blocked nose. They work by constricting the diameter of the blood vessels in the nose. This helps expand the nasal passages. However, this type of spray is unsuitable for many people including pregnant and nursing mothers and anyone suffering from high blood pressure.
- Anticholinergic: Using nasal sprays of this type can be an effective way to control a runny nose. Although this type of spray can be used in place of antihistamine and steroid nasal sprays, it will not reduce the inflammation or congestion and is unlikely to offer much help with snoring.
- Saline Nasal Sprays (Non-Medicated): This type of spray contains a combination of water and salt. Some people find this is good for moisturizing the nasal passages and breaking down mucus. Some brands of saline nasal spray contain medication as well. You should check with your doctor or pharmacist before using these. Depending on the medication they contain, each one may present a different combination of benefits. There may also be potential side effects.
- Mast Cell Inhibitors: Sprays of this type are only likely to benefit people who suffer from seasonal allergies such as hay fever. Unlike the other options, mast cell inhibitors are preventative. That means you need to be able to anticipate a problem and use the spray before your nose becomes congested.
Stop Snoring Sprays – The Bottom Line
Using a spray may be a potentially good way to stop snoring but it’s not one of the best options to choose. Anti-snoring devices such as MADs and TSDs are better suited to this task.
Does that mean anti-snore sprays are useless? Certainly not. A minority of light snorers may find such sprays offer some level of relief.
However, anti-snore sprays probably offer the most benefit when they are used as an additional measure on an if and when required basis.
Regardless of the type of anti-snoring device you are using, colds, flu, and allergies can make the situation worse. They augment the existing problem by causing mucus and congestion.
At times like these, anti-snore sprays and nasal sprays may work well alongside your main anti-snoring measure by helping keep your airways nice and clear.