In the hot summer months air conditioning is essential for many of us. If you snore could your air con be a contributing factor or even the main cause?
Air conditioning is a wonderful invention. Few people would like to be without it during the summer.
Even if it’s hot enough outside to fry an egg on the sidewalk, air conditioning allows us to retain our cool and chill out inside our homes.
However, there’s a lot of talk about air conditioning and snoring.
Plenty of people believe sleeping with the air conditioning on may cause snoring and other problems that can interfere with the quality of sleep.
You may be surprised to learn the people who say this are right.
Although a good air conditioning unit can be a godsend on a hot day, leaving it running overnight may be a bad idea. The same can be applied but to a lesser extent to sleeping with a fan on and nearby and even a humidifier.
What Will I Learn?
- 1 How Does Air Conditioning Cause Snoring?
- 2 Air Conditioning Dries Out the Air
- 3 Air Conditioning Recirculates Dust and Pollen Particles
- 4 Additional Reasons Not to Leave Your Air Conditioning on at Night
- 5 Does Air Conditioning Cause Snoring? – In Summary
How Does Air Conditioning Cause Snoring?
There are a couple of ways leaving the air conditioning running at night may cause snoring.
The first way it can do this is by causing the tissues in your mouth and throat to become too dry.
The second way is by recirculating dust that may cause nasal and throat irritation or make the symptoms of allergies to kick in.
Air Conditioning Dries Out the Air
The air that blows out your air conditioning can be pretty dry.
Much drier than the air you would normally be inhaling during the night.
Apart from drying out the membranes in the nose, it can do the same to the flesh in the mouth and the back of the throat.
This can make the flesh to become more prone to vibrate and produce that sound we call snoring.
Note: When you sleep with your mouth open, the flesh in your mouth and throat can dry out quicker than it would if you were breathing through our nose.
The problem is, even when you normally sleep with your mouth closed, the dry air your air conditioner produces may cause nasal congestion that forces you to open your mouth.
There is nothing amazing about this reaction.
We all need to breathe and, even when we are sleeping, our bodies are programmed to survive.
So, when normal breathing is not possible via the nose, the mouth pops open. It’s an automatic response.
Shortly after that mouth opens and the tissues dry out, snoring is likely to start.
Apart from making you snore, the same dry air scenario may also make you wake up with a sore throat.
Air Conditioning Recirculates Dust and Pollen Particles
Air conditioning blows around a lot of dust. Just because you can’t see it don’t try and kid yourself it’s not there.
At times when there is a lot of pollen about it keeps on recirculating that too.
If you don’t keep your air conditioning unit clean and have it regularly serviced, the problem with redistributing dust and pollen can become much worse.
If you have a problem with allergies, this may also cause problems during the day.
However, we breathe deeper during sleep so the problems can be much worse if you leave your air conditioning running throughout the night.
This is not just a problem for people with allergies.
Even if you are blessed with a state of health that’s 100% allergy-free, dust and pollen at the back of the throat can cause irritation, louder snoring, and a more inflamed throat.
Additional Reasons Not to Leave Your Air Conditioning on at Night
So, why would you want to leave your air conditioning running all night anyway? Most people do it to stop the heat preventing them from getting to sleep.
This is an understandable reaction but this is a benefit that can entail several negative repercussions.
Your Body Temperature May Drop too Low
When you are sleeping your body temperature drops. That’s normal. It’s the way we humans are built.
When you leave the air conditioning on at night it can cause your body temperature to become much lower than it would normally be.
Apart from causing you to wake up prematurely during the night, being too cold can also play havoc with your immune system.
It’s also worth being aware certain viruses replicate better at cooler temperatures than they do in the heat.
Rhinovirus is one of them. It’s the virus responsible for the common cold.
With this in mind, if you feel an overwhelming need to leave your air conditioning unit running at night, try to resist the temptation to set the temperature too low.
It May Not be Good for Your Skin
It’s not just your mouth, throat, and nose that can become overly dry when you leave your air conditioner running at night.
The rest of your body can start to dry out too.
Apart from causing sore, itchy eyes, that blast of cold air may not be good for your skin. Eczema is another repercussion you may have to face.
It Might Screw Up Your Hormones
Further research is necessary but some studies suggest low temperatures may interfere with your body’s ability to produce certain hormones.
If so, this is quite an important consideration because the production rate of some hormones, including testosterone and human growth hormone (HGH), normally steps up during the night.
Hormones are important. They are responsible for governing many biological functions. It does not make good sense to do anything that may prevent them from doing their job.
Does Air Conditioning Cause Snoring? – In Summary
Leaving your air conditioning running at night has the potential to cause you to begin snoring.
If you are already a snorer, it may make the situation worse.
Sleeping under that blast of cold, dry, recirculated air may cause other health issues too, including sore throat, itchy eyes, and eczema.
Keeping your air conditioning unit clean and well-serviced may improve the situation by reducing certain risks but it will not take them away.
If the nights are so hot it prevents you from sleeping, instead of leaving your air conditioning running, it may be better to set it to switch off automatically during the night instead.
You could set it to switch off an hour after you expect to be asleep.
Clever use of the timing mechanism could help you get to sleep, reduce your risk of snoring, and help prevent the negative issues that have the potential to damage your health.
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