If you are a snorer, then you are certainly not alone. Approximately 20-30% of women and 40-50% of men in the United States snore on a regular basis. This means that almost 60% of people live with a partner who snores regularly. That’s a lot of sleepless nights! As people get older, they are more likely to begin snoring—and this is true for men and women.
Snoring is a fairly uncomplicated sleep disorder related to restricted breathing. Airways can be constricted by a variety of things during sleep, including excess fatty tissue in the throat, congestion in the nose or sinuses, inflammation caused by illness or allergies, swollen tonsils and adenoids, or even the way the jaw falls open when sleeping. When breathing is restricted, the air comes through in a rough manner and results in the sounds that we know to be snoring.
Whether you are the person who snores, or your spouse or roommate does, you may be on the hunt for some natural therapeutic solutions to contain the snoring. Because the causes of snoring can vary from person to person, the treatment for snoring will also be different depending on the reason the individual snores in the first place.
In an effort to keep things simple and natural, many people look to the holistic treatment of massage for snoring. While each type of massage for snoring may not work to cure the problem for everyone, it is certainly worth a try to find out if you (or your favorite snorer) could benefit.
Reflexology Massage for Snoring
Part of the world of naturopathic medicine, reflexology is a system of massage that is used to treat health problems based on reflex points in the hands, feet, and head that connect to all of the body parts. When used specifically as a massage treatment for snoring, the focus is on the respiratory function that is represented in the feet.
If snoring is caused by cough, cold, or mucus buildup (due to illness or smoking), reflexology applied to the tops of the toes, bases of the toes, and ball of the foot may help to clear mucus and even remove toxins from the respiratory system. The goal in respiratory reflexology massage is to promote deeper, healthier, and slower breathing that is more relaxed. This therapy seeks to open up the airways and strengthen the capacity for breathing during wakeful times as well as during sleep.
Although anyone can benefit from a foot rub now and then, the discipline of reflexology massage for snoring should be performed by a person who is trained in reflexology therapy in order to get the maximum impact.
Essential Oil Massage for Snoring
While massage on its own may not be enough to eliminate snoring altogether, using massage in tandem with the use of powerful essential oils may just give your body the boost that you need to breathe easier during sleep. Essential oils are powerful plant extracts that are completely natural, offering therapeutic healing and health boosts to the body in a variety of ways.
Essential oils that are specifically known to help with the respiratory system are the oils you’ll want to incorporate into your massage therapy to reduce snoring. These oils include:
- Marjoram. Many people swear by this essential oil as a snoring treatment, but it doesn’t work for everyone. As it takes a bit of time to kick in, you may need to try it for several weeks before seeing results. Before sleep, massage marjoram essential oil (diluted with a carrier oil) into the bottoms of the feet and then put socks on.
- Thyme. This powerful oil work to alleviate respiratory illness and strengthen the immune system. Mix a few drop of thyme essential oil with a carrier oil and apply to the base of the toes at night before going to sleep.
- Eucalyptus. This mucus-clearing, anti-inflammatory oil offers positive benefits for promoting clear breathing during sleep. It also works as a remedy for cold and flu, which is helpful if your snoring is related to illness. Massage eucalyptus essential oil into the chest before going to sleep.
- Peppermint. As an anti-inflammatory, peppermint essential oil can open up the breathing passages and reduce congestion that can cause snoring. Massage diluted oil into the bottoms of the feet before going to sleep. This oil can also help you lose weight, which can contribute to the reduction of snoring.
Using Massage to Reduce Snoring
Although there is really no cure for snoring, various treatments can work to reduce the impact that snoring has on your life and the life of your family or roommates. Usually, snoring treatments are not a one-and-done type of solution, but often include a combination of various aspects of natural life changes that can minimize snoring.
If you are interested in using massage for snoring, contact a massage therapist or reflexologist in your area to let them know what your needs are and discover how they might be able to help. Massage can work along with a variety of other proactive ways as a part of an entire plan to reduce snoring. Other lifestyle changes to reduce snoring include:
- Losing weight
- Changing pillow
- Treating allergies
- Changing your diet
- Stopping smoking
- Limit alcohol consumption
- Change sleeping position
- Using a snoring mouthpiece
Because snoring is a sleep breathing disorder that can often be linked to serious medical conditions, such as sleep apnea, obesity, and heart problems, it is important that snoring be taken seriously as a medical condition. If you or your partner is a chronic snorer, be sure to check with your doctor or a sleep specialist to rule out any connections to serious health conditions. Your doctor may refer you to a sleep clinic and should be able to help you with a diagnosis and treatment plan if your snoring turns out to be more than benign.
Using massage for snoring is one way to naturally and holistically minimize the sounds that you or your partner make during sleep. This, in turn, will help you both to get better sleep on a regular basis. And we all know that getting regular, uninterrupted sleep every night is a vital key to having more energy for the day, more focus for your work, and a positive attitude that spills over into your entire life as a whole!