Snoring is an off-putting habit. Even when you love everything else about a person, their propensity to snore can make life intolerable, so you need to block out snoring.
The most popular method for blocking out the sound of a snoring partner is to shield the ears with soft earbuds or earmuffs. Alternatively, meditation, listening to ambient white noise, or noise-canceling appliances like headphones can mute the sound of a partner.
The noise of snoring will keep you awake at night and ruin your day. You won’t be getting enough sleep, and the stress and frustration you feel as a result can place a strain on your relationship.
Why Does My Partner Snore So Loud?
There’s no such thing as an average decibel level for snoring, but it could range from 50 to 120 dB. If your partner snores loudly, the most common causes include:
- Sleep apnea
- Drinking alcohol
- Smoking cigarettes
- Swollen tonsils
- Block nose (permanent or due to seasonal allergies or respiratory infection)
Snoring from a partner shouldn’t just be tolerated because it’ll keep you up at night.
Sharing a Bed with a Snoring Partner
If you’re sharing a bed with a partner that snores, costing you sleep, you need to speak to them about the issue. Your partner may be upset to learn that they’re snoring.
Your partner may deny snoring, which is surprisingly common because snorers can’t hear themselves. Take a recording of your partner’s snoring in this instance, as this will make them face up to how much they’re disturbing you.
Of course, accepting that you snore and doing something about it are two entirely different things. You’ll need to encourage your partner to cease snoring or find a way to sleep despite the disturbance.
What Can I Use to Block Out Snoring?
Ask a hundred people to describe the biggest challenge to sharing a bed, and many will say, “my husband snores so loud that I can’t sleep.” Sleep confirms that men are likelier to snore loudly than women.
It can be hard to know what to do when someone snores, especially when it keeps you awake. Remaining in bed and growing frustrated by your inability to sleep shouldn’t be considered an option.
Blocking the sound of snoring comes in one of three forms – muffling the sound, drowning it out, or focusing on something else so that you no longer notice the snoring. Different people find success from varying approaches, and patience will be required.
Head into a pharmacy, and you’ll find a range of over-the-counter products that claim to aid with snoring. Some are wearable, such as nasal strips or mouth guards, while others are more medicinal, such as pills.
They seek to open up the throat while you sleep, thus keeping the airways open, making snoring less likely. Some remedies are more reliable than others, and none are a permanent solution.
Wearable remedies to reduce snoring are usually effective in the short term. They can minimize the volume and delay the inevitable, giving you time to fall asleep before the snoring starts.
Change Your Partner’s Position
If your partner is snoring like a pneumatic drill, your partner is likely on their back. This sleeping position is comfortable but commonly associated with loud snoring.
When on our back, the airways in the neck collapse, leading to snoring and sleep apnea. Give your partner a nudge or roll them onto their side to reduce the snoring volume.
In the longer term, encourage your partner to prevent back sleeping. The Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine confirms that positional therapy devices, such as pillows and belts, can keep somebody sleeping on their side.
Earplugs and Earmuffs
Earplugs are among the most popular solutions for people that share a bed with a snoring partner.
Nursing in Critical Care stated that earplugs and eye masks promote sleep in busy ICUs.
Earplugs are safe if they fit correctly, but not everybody has an ear shape that can accommodate these accessories. You’ll need to clean the earplugs regularly.
Regularly wearing earplugs pushes wax into the ear canal, leading to ear infections. These can be remedied with ear drops prescribed by a healthcare professional but are still profoundly unpleasant to experience.
Earplugs made from wax are comfortable and easy to clean, albeit expensive. Alternatively, you could pick up overhead earmuffs designed for sleeping.
A white noise machine is an option if you’re trying to block out snoring. Typically, this approach is advisable if you’re being kept awake by lost-distance snoring.
The idea of a white noise machine is to create a different sound, released at a similar pitch to the snoring. Yes, that means you’re trading one din for another, but many people find white noise less intrusive than repetitive, droning snoring.
You could try brown noise if your partner sleeps particularly loudly. Brown noise is pitched a little lower than white noise, making it harder to tolerate for some people. Pink noise, meanwhile, is found somewhere between the two.
Noise Cancelling Devices for Sleeping
Another way to block out snoring sounds is to use noise-canceling headphones. You’ll need headphones you can sleep in, so ensure they are soft and comfortable. High-quality headphones are usually effective, though.
You may not need to listen to anything in these headphones, depending on whether you pick up active or passive noise-canceling headphones. This difference will also influence the price point.
Passive headphones cover the ear, preventing external sound from penetrating the ear. They may not be comfortable to sleep in because they’re bulky and tight on the head.
Active noise canceling involves feeding an alternative sound into the headphones, akin to white noise. As a result, you can theoretically use these headphones without music by switching on the noise-canceling tech to block out snoring.
If you can tolerate music at bedtime, it’s worth considering. The Journal of Advanced Nursing explains how relaxing music inspires superior sleep. For example, classical music is relaxing for the mind and body.
Meditation is a challenging skill that requires practice to master. If you develop the patience and self-discipline to meditate, you’ll be capable of blocking out unwelcome ambient noise in your environment, including snoring.
If attempting to meditate your way through a noisy experience, investigate guided meditations. These can be found on YouTube or apps, but you’ll need headphones to listen to these meditations.
If you prefer a DIY approach, follow these steps.
- Get yourself into a physically relaxed position. Ideally, remain lying down in your bed.
- Clear your mind and focus on how your body feels. Acknowledge any sensations in your physical body, ignoring any irritability you’re feeling about the snoring. Focus on any muscular twinges, temperature fluctuations, or pulsing vibrations.
- Take a deep breath, relaxing as much as possible.
- Clear your mind as you exhale, then take another deep breath.
- Continue to empty your mind, focusing all attention on your breathing and body.
Essentially, the aim here is to stop paying attention to the noises surrounding you, such as snoring, and instead anchor yourself by concentrating on your breath. Once you master this skill, you should find that snoring no longer dominates and ruins your night.
Temporarily Leave the Room
One of the biggest challenges of being kept awake by snoring is the frustration it causes. Once your sleep is broken, you may feel annoyed and agitated, making it harder to nod off again.
There is little to gain by remaining in bed, growing increasingly angry with your partner. Their snoring will almost sound like goading as sleep evades you. Cool off by leaving the room, even if just for a few minutes.
Get yourself a glass of water, watch TV, read a book – do anything that will take your mind off the snoring. If you can adjust your mindset so that snoring isn’t at the forefront of your thinking, you’ll have more success ignoring it when you return to bed.
Sleep Elsewhere in the Home
If snoring prevents you from sleeping, one of you needs to rest elsewhere. The couch is fine for a night or two, but you’ll need a spare room.
High-quality sleep is vital to physical, mental, and emotional health, so you must find out how to block out snoring noise from a partner.
Experiment with different techniques and find the one that works for you. Equally, ensure that the snorer plays their role in ceasing the din, and you’ll benefit in the longer term.