Defend Your Sleep Against Loud Snoring
Kept up at night by a snoring bed partner?
You’re not alone. AND you don’t have to suffer through it when you use earplugs that cancel nuisance snoring.
Before you plug your ears you really should explore the reasons your bed partner snores. Worst-case scenario: he or she suffers from sleep apnea, which can be serious if left untreated. However, a chief sign of sleep apnea is also frequent pauses in sleep breathing possibly in combination with choking or struggling for air. If you notice these signs urge him or her to see a doctor as soon as possible. Long-term sleep apnea can precipitate serious medical conditions.
But many other behavioral and situational factors can contribute to snoring as well:
- positional snoring
- sinus infections, colds and allergies that narrow nasal passageways
- late night alcohol drinking
Good news is that all of these can be addressed with lifestyle and behavioral changes.
Loud and frequent snoring does secondary sleep damage to millions of people, whose sleep cycle is regularly interrupted, resulting in transient and even chronic insomnia symptoms. You’re tired, you’re irritable, you have problems concentrating at work or school, and you’re over it.
How loud is snoring?
Measured in decibels (db) snoring usually falls between 60 and 80/90 decibels, compared to normal talking which is about 60 db, a vacuum cleaner which is 70 db, and a chainsaw, about 100 db. Loud snoring, then, is an indicator for earplugs.
Types of Earplugs
Earplugs that help cancel out the sound of loud snoring are available everywhere, online, in your local drugstore, and from your doctor. Most over-the-counter earplugs are inexpensive and made of pliable soft foam, moldable wax, polyurethane, silicone rubber, and other malleable and semi-impermeable substances. Most are marketed for multiple sound protection purposes, including canceling loud music, engines, and industrial noises.
- Disposable earplugs offer inexpensive solutions that help dull some noises, but are unlikely to completely cancel loud snoring. Expect some relief for under $10.
- Industrial, reusable earplugs are designed to dull very loud noise such as engines, jack-hammers, chain saws, and more. Many models require you to fit them by rolling and molding, while others are made of soft pliable rubber that auto-fits to your outer ear canal.
- Lab-made ear plugs can be custom-fitted and reusable for long-term.
Choosing Earplugs for Snoring
Industrial and safety earplugs are rated according to a Noise Reduction Rating scale, annotated NRR + a number rating, ie NRR 28. This means that the product is designed to cut the decibel level of the surrounding noise by that many decibels. If the snoring is a loud 90 db, an NRR 28 would drop the decibel level to 62 db, the noise level of normal human speech.
If you are unable to find an earplug product that cancels snoring allowing you to sleep, contact your doctor. Your sleep is important, too.