my roommate snores

My roommate snores, I can’t sleep, what do I do? 31 tested solutions

my roommate snores

31 tested solutions for when your roommate snores

In college, surrounded by students in the room.  They snored and they snored loudly!

Bleary eyed and annoyed, I had to work out what to do.

My work suffering.  Sleep deprived.  My social skills went into an abyss as I became more irritated.

I endlessly asked friends, did research and found what worked.

This is the list that saved my sanity and education!

These are the best tried and tested methods.  To improve this list, I also asked loads of friends and spent ages doing online research.

The top 10 solutions, for when your roommate snores

  1. Get to sleep before your roommate 
  2. White noise machines
  3. Earplugs.
  4. Nasal strips and mouthpieces
  5. Stop roommate sleeping on their back
  6. Clean out their airways
  7. See if your roommate has sleep apnea

Please read this guide for how to make these work and for loads more solutions.

1, Go to sleep before your roommate does

Most people are not woken up by their roommate snoring, but it does stop them going to sleep.

It’s especially hard to fall asleep because of the worry of trying to fall asleep before they do.

Even more frustrating, worrying about when they are going to start sleeping.  That is when the thunderous, frustrating and annoying snoring starts!

It is like a race that you do not want to lose. This worry stops people from being able to get to sleep at all.

If you are already asleep before your roommate even goes to bed, then there is not this problem.

Getting to sleep before your roommate, of course, leaves out the problem of if you wake up during the night.  For this issue, I recommend looking the other solutions on this page.

2, White noise machines

white noise machine

These are machines that produce white noise, to cover up that your roommate snores.  There are loads you can buy online.

White noise is made up of random sounds, such as those in the sounds that a waterfall makes, or wind going through trees.

Although they are called white noise machines’, it’s a LIE!

They produce pink noise which has higher frequencies, as white noise is quite a harsh sound, so not as good for aiding sleep.  It’s marketing as people get confused by the word ‘pink noise’.

There are also lots of white noise phone apps, which are a cheaper solution, than buying a white noise machine.

They are not such outlandish or rare machine machines.  They are commonly used by therapists and other professionals to help with things that cause insomnia.

A free solution is to use this Youtube video that does white noise for 8 hours, or this Youtube video produces brown noise video for 8 hours.  Some people find brown noise better for sleeping.

One word of caution.  It is very tempting to turn the volume up very loud, to cover up any other sounds, but prolonged exposure to high volume sounds can cause long term hearing loss.

It seems fine now, but being deaf later on is not fun!

Hearing loss is never a price worth paying.   So please be careful not to turn it up too high.

Make sure it is a constant noise

Some people have tried using headphones that create the sound of the waves and other things in nature.   They are a disaster as the sounds are not continuous.

For example, with waves.  Between each wave is silence. Where the horrendous noise of their roommate snoring is all there to hear!

3, Stop your roommate from sleeping on their back

sleep side

People snore much less when they are not on their backs.

Your roommate snores, because air cannot move cleanly through their nose and throat, while they are asleep.   These obstructions make their tissues vibrate, and of course, vibration is what causes sound.

That incredibly annoying sound!

When they are lying on their back, the base of their tongue and soft palate, go onto the back wall of their throat.

It is their throat and nasal tissues that are floppy and so vibrates, causing snoring.   Your roommate may also snore, because of their tongue vibrating.

The first way to try and solve the problem is to get your roommate to go on their side.   Your roommate’s airways may also be less narrow when they sleep on their side.

Ways to make your roommate, sleep on their side:

Tell them while they are sleeping

Telling them to stop snoring, while they are asleep is a training issue. While your roommate is sleeping, you are teaching them not to snore.

If you do it in the right way, with the right intentions, and responsibly, your roommate should trust you, and they should be okay with it.

You do not want to wake them or cause them distress.  Your roommate wakes up in some screaming fit like they are being attacked!

It should be a gentle, comforting thing, while they are asleep.  Like you would do with someone you love.

So while they are asleep, ask them quietly at first, and they may stop snoring, or turn onto their side for you.

If they do not do it, then be a bit louder, but do not be too loud.  The way to get them to do it is to tell them with a firm, unyielding, lower pitched voice.

When someone is asleep, and they realize the person that is awake, is not going to yield on this one.  The sleeping roommate will typically turn over onto their side, or stop snoring.

Make sure when you tell them not to snore, they do not stop breathing in their sleep, as this can be unhealthy for your roommate.

If they will not move on their side when you have asked them in their sleep

If they do not go onto their side, from your verbal instructions, then you may need to move them yourself….

Best to ask them first while they are awake, if you can do this.   You should also agree, what you will do and how you plan to do it.

It should be that you do not have to move them.

You touch them a bit, and they do the rest themselves.

Each time you do this, you have to touch them less and less.

They will get the message!!!!

You are not going to give up!

Until they stop sleeping on their back!


Like all training issues, stopping your roommate from snoring takes time to work.

Keep it up.

You can do it!!!

The incredible annoyance of not being able to sleep because your roommate snores, should be enough to keep you going.

You can win!

The sleeping person will probably go back onto their back, at least two times during the night at first.

However, if you keep doing this process, things do change.  You have to be persistent.

4, Anti snoring pillows

With this method your roommate will not look like a freak!

Anti snoring pillows, will typically only reduce your roommate’s snoring a bit.  They can stop your roommates snoring completely if their snoring is not that noisy.  That that may be enough though, for you to be able to sleep.

It is different for each situation and person.  For some people, it does not work much at all.

It is worth trying, but if your roommate is a very noisy snorer, you may also need to use some of the other solutions in this guide.

Anti snoring pillows work by putting your roommates head, in a position that their airways are open as much as possible.  Both when they are on their back and on their side.

You may need to buy the anti snoring pillow for your roommate.  Buying it yourself is so it gets purchased as soon as possible. Especially if your roommate regards it as your problem, that they snore.

To make sure your roommate uses it, ask them which one they like best. If they do not want to bother choosing one, show them a list of anti snoring pillows, so they can select one from the list themselves.

If they do not want to even look at the list, try and make them do so.

You need to stand up for yourself on this one, for the sake of your sanity!

If they have not agreed in some way, they are less likely to use it. So I recommend making sure they agree with your choice of anti snore pillow before you buy it.

If your roommate does not like the idea and has not agreed to your choice of anti snore pillow, your roommate will probably not use it, and it will be a waste of money.

If they are excited about the idea, it may be a good thing to try.

Cheaper than an anti snoring pillow

Sometimes just using standard pillows works and cheaper than an anti snoring pillow.

Get their head not too low and not too high.  So they have a sleeping posture with straight airways.

Use one more pillow, one less pillow, or different pillow thicknesses.

Work out and experiment with the number of pillows, or pillow thickness.

5, Nasal strips

nasal strips stop snoring

Nasal strips stick to the outside of their nose to open their nasal passages.  They open the blockages and stops them snoring.

A nasal strip can help if they have a cold or even something else that is blocking their nasal passages, like a deviated septum.

The septum is the bone and cartilage that separates the two sides of their nose.  A deviated septum is where it is not correctly aligned.

If you buy and provide the nasal strips for your roommate, they will hopefully wear them for you.

I know this may infuriate you, but you need your sleep!!!

Do nasal strips really work to stop snoring?

Yes, if the problem comes from your roommate having a blocked, or blockage in their nose.

To see if they will work before buying them.  Ask your roommate to press a finger on one side of their nose, to close a passageway.  If the other side of their nose collapses or makes noise when they breathe in, they probably have a blocked nasal passageway.

Ask them to repeat on the other side as well.

If they do have a blocked nose, these could work well.

Things to watch out for

Nasal strips are not a cure for sleep apnea, where your roommate stops breathing while they sleep.  If they have this, they need to see a doctor as it can also be harmful to their general health.

Make sure your roommate washes their face before putting them on.  Otherwise, the grease on their face can stop the strips from sticking properly.

The adhesive needs to be strong, so they stay on and open up your roommate’s nose up properly.  Your roommate may find that after a week, the stickiness of the strip which makes the strips stick to their nose, starts to be a nuisance.

When they take them off after sleeping, they can pull off a layer of skin and that area of skin gets irritated.  Vaseline can solve this problem.

The adhesive can also clog their skin pores, so a good skin care routine to unblock pores is a good idea.

Your roommate may have a mark from the strips in the morning, so others might be able to tell that they use them.

Can you imaging what it would be like for your roommate to go into a cafeteria, looking like they have a serious skin issue!

Again, vaseline or a good skin moisturizer can solve this problem.

Nasal strips are not very romantic, or good looking.  So your roommate should put them on only after they have had some romantic time with their partner and they are going to sleep.

We are telling you how to solve these problems, so your roommate does not use them as an excuse not to use the nasal strips.

Making nasal strips work

Help your roommate try lots of different brands and types.  Some are thinner and so need more adhesive strength to stay on, which makes them irritate the skin more.

Like most things, some are better quality than others.  For example, we found some designs do not stay stuck on all through the night.

People have different sizes and shapes of noses.  Nasal strips have different success rates for different shapes of noses.  If your roommate has a tiny nose, a nasal strip may not even fit.   For some nose shapes, they will not stay on properly.

By making it a fun toy thing to do, your roommate is more likely to go along with it.

Getting your roommate to use nasal strips

It is a nuisance for your roommate to use nasal strips.

They may hate it!

To encourage them to do it and keep it up, express your gratitude, so they do it for you.

Also, we recommend giving them emotional support, so they can get through the nuisance and annoyance of wearing them.

For the best chance, they will keep using them, pay for the nasal strips and any associated skin care things they may need, because of the adhesive.  We recommend also ordering them and doing the stock control as well.

Nasal strips may help your roommate to sleep better because their nose is not blocked.  Use this as a way of encouraging your roommate to use them.

You may find that because of the adhesive on their skin, they cannot cope with using them every night.  Maybe compromise where half of the nights, they use nasal strips and the other half you wear earplugs.

6, Tongue retraining devices

Most of the research and use of tongue training devices are for sleep apnea.  They can also solve the snoring problem and have a high success rate as most snoring comes from the base of the tongue.

It can also help where older people can start to snore because the back of their throat has lost elasticity.

They are also more straightforward, more comfortable and relatively cheap to buy,  compared to a CPAP machine.

They are often used by people, where their medical insurance will not pay for a CPAP machine, or while they are waiting for their medical insurance to pay for one.

Some people find they need to use both a mouthpiece and chin strap, for their snoring to stop.  For most people, just one or the other is enough.

Some people use a chinstrap as well as a mouthpiece because they find the mouthpiece puts a strain on their teeth.  The chin strap takes some of the pressure, and so stops the strain on your roommate’s teeth.

Some people also use them at the same time as adhesive nasal strips, because of how they can also help open their airways.

Before you buy, check out that it is medically approved or certified, not just some gimmick that does not work and makes outlandish claims.

If your roommate’s snoring is not coming from the base of their tongue,  surgeons can also reduce the soft palate.  Anti snoring devices, including CPAP machines, are a preferred option, your roommate should get medical advice, and other options should be tried out before surgery.


Your roommate puts a tongue retraining device in their mouth.

They stop your roommate’s tongue from sliding back into their mouth when they sleep as this can cause snoring.

Tongue training mouthpieces also make their jaw and tongue go forward.  This increases the space at the back of their throat and makes their airways less narrow.  By having their airways less narrow, there is less snoring.

Mouthpieces cure snoring for most people, but not everybody.

Making a mouthpiece work for your roommate

There are loads of different kinds.  Some are molded to their mouth, and some also have nose vents, chinstraps and so on.   Other mouthpieces move your roommate’s lower jaw slightly forward, to create a shape that stops them snoring.

We have also found that some are more comfortable than others, are designed more, or less well.    So people often have a try out a few, before they find the one that is right for them.

There is a difference between cheap and more expensive ones, such as with comfort and how they slip out of position less.

Some designs are for every mouth, and your roommate’s put them in their mouth straight from the packet.    Others need exact setup and customization.  For all of them, the instructions need to be read before use.

It’s important to spend time reading the instructions, some also come with an instructional video you can look at on their website.

Solving the problems that can come up from using a mouthpiece

Some people put chapstick on their lips before they go to bed, as they find their lips get dry.

Some people find their teeth and gums are a bit sore in the mornings, after the first few times they use it.  Either it will sort itself out, or there is some other issue.  It could be that your roommate did not fit it properly, or has some other dental problem that makes it unsuitable.

The soreness can also be like when your roommate has opened their mouth at the dentist for a long time and is sore afterward.  This kind of soreness is normal and should go away after they have used it for a few days or a week. Your roommate should not be in any pain though!

Some people find their jaw is sore for the first few days they use it, because it may hold their jaw in a slightly different position than without the mouthpiece.  Most people get used to this new position, and their body adapts to it after a while and so are not sore anymore.

For some people, it makes their mouth sore for the first ten minutes and then less and less each time they use it.

The pressure should be even in all parts of your roommate’s mouth.  If there is pressure in one place, such as their front teeth, then they must immediately stop using it, or make sure it is adjusted, so it immediately stops.  This is important to pay attention to!  Getting used to it is one thing, soreness, damage and pain is something else.

If your roommate has had bridgework, crowns, dental caps or even missing teeth, they should be especially cautious to make sure nothing gets stressed or damaged.  They may need a dentist to create a custom one if they have this situation.

Customizing the mouthpiece

Some mouthpieces come with a mold your roommate put’s their teeth into, to create the molding.  Others are adjustable, with a dial, so they are precisely right for their particular mouth.

They come with instructions for how to do do the molding process, or adjustments, to create your perfect customized mouthpiece.

If wearing the mouthpiece is not comfortable and they are using the adjustable kind, it may need to be looser and adjusted.  Get your roommate to start using it on the loosest setting first and go from there.

Getting it to work, is often about a lot of experimentation with how it is adjusted.   If the mouthpiece does not fit your roommate’s mouth properly, it can make their snoring worse.

How long they last, before you have to buy a new one, mainly depends on how they treat it; both when your roommate is awake and asleep.  For example, if they try and grind your teeth when sleeping, it will last less long.

The mouthguards where you take a mold of your roommate’s teeth

Creating a mold from the instructions can be hard the first time your roommate does it.   Once they have done it the way right the first time, it is easy.

Very easy to bite too hard and past the soft stuff that makes the impression of the teeth and hit the hard plastic.

Also, after taking the impression of your teeth, not putting it in boiling water long enough, so it does not get a good enough shape.

If you get it wrong first time, a good mouthpiece supplier will send you another set of the molding material for free.

Dentists can also make customizable mouthpieces for your roommate.  They make the moldings so they fit perfectly, not much different from the version you can buy and do yourself with them.

Using a dentist can help reduce soreness and stop the other issues that can come from not doing the customized molding correctly, so they do not fit well.  A dentist will have more knowledge and experience to advise and stop issues that can come up.

If a dentist is making a custom mouthpiece, it can be smaller as it is just for your roommate’s mouth.  It does not have to have all the stuff to fit and be adjustable for all different sizes of mouths.   So the dentist can create a smaller one, that does not rub against their inner cheeks and gums so much.

For people with smaller mouths, this is an even bigger issue.  They could even choke, or gag on some designs of standard mouthpieces that are designed to be adjusted for all sizes of mouth.

Dentists charge hundreds of dollars for this service, which is why many people try the do it yourself versions first.  Also, the mouthpiece will not last forever, so your roommate may have the cost of the dentist making others in the future.


Anti snoring chinstraps work well and usually are cheaper than mouthpieces.  I also found they get better reviews on Amazon.

On average people find them more comfortable and quicker to get used to than a mouthpiece tongue trainer.   It still takes a few weeks to get fully used to though.

Most of them work by moving your roommate’s jaw forward a bit.  After a while, your roommate should not even notice they are wearing it.

It can also take a month to get results, as it needs that long for the chin strap to train your roommate not to snore.

Make sure your roommate can breathe well enough through their nose, to entirely make up for the chinstrap closing their mouth.  As with a chinstrap on, your roommate will not be able to breathe through their mouth.

People tend to use them for sleep apnea.  A chinstrap also helps with the other things that come from sleep apnea, like getting a dry mouth.

Many people use them together with a CPAP machine and that works well.

We have found a chinstrap often solves the problem and is a good idea for if your roommate snores.

Tips so your roommate will keep using the chinstrap

We are telling you these, so you can help your roommate and make sure they do not get away with any of the excuses not to use it.

As your roommate is not the person having to listen to their snoring, they may have less incentive to make it work than you do.  They may not try as hard as you would to make it work.

You also may find you have to do the chores and the effort to make it work, so all they have to do is put it on.

They may also issues as excuses, not to use it.

You also need to wash chinstraps regularly, so they do not become stinky.  A bit like your roommate should with any clothing.

Some will have a smell when you first get them; your roommate will find it more noticeable as the band is near their nose.  Also, they are breathing through their nose more as the chinstrap is closing their mouth.  The smell should fade over time, although for a small minority this smell can be too much and a problem.

As people have different sized heads and ears in slightly different places, each design is not right for everybody.   Often you can get around this by putting it on at a different angle, or position.

If it does not stop your roommate from snoring or is not comfortable, it may not be the right design for your roommate.  There are many types, designs and brands out there.  They may need to try a few, to get the right one for them.

If your roommate has a beard, they may need to wet it to get the chinstrap on properly.

7, Natural ways if your roommate snores, for them to open their nasal passages

Cleaning out nasal passages

There are many natural ways to clean out nasal passages, so can breathe more easily and so snore less.

A hot shower can help.

Saltwater rinses up the nose is also very useful.

I like Karvol, as well as other such nasal airways cleaning products, that your roommate can put in a bowl of hot water.

Your roommate puts a towel over their head to trap the steam over the bowl so that they can inhale it.  Nasal airway cleaning products that can be put into hot water and breathed in are potent for opening up and cleaning nasal airways.

Of course be careful the steam is not too hot, so you do not burn your nasal airways.

A neti pot is also a great thing to use.

how roommate use neti pot

Staying hydrated reduces snoring

Staying hydrated may not seem much, but it does make a difference.

If your roommate is dehydrated, they will get more sticky secretions in their nose and soft palate.

It is easy for your roommate not to stay hydrated, especially if they are busy focusing on other things like project deadlines, or it is sweltering weather.

If your roommate pees and it is not clear, they have not drunk enough.

Please no weird stuff to find our your roommate’s pees color.

8, Mechanical methods, to stop roommate sleeping on their back

There are many mechanical solutions, to prevent your roommate going onto their back.

Most roommates will only be happy to use a mechanical solution to sort out their snoring if they know that they have a problem and need to solve it.

Later on, this guide shows how to communicate this to your roommate, to make it happen.  Drama awaits!

They may choose to go through the effort and inconvenience of sorting it out because they value having you as a roommate, or other people have also had problems with them, because of their snoring.

Also because you have researched, organized, purchased and explained all the things they need to do.

So for the lazy sod, it is easy!

Being safe when using mechanical methods

It is okay for adults to sleep on their side all the time.   However, they need to be able to move around freely and a lot.  People naturally move around in their sleep a lot, and it is essential that they do that.

Otherwise, it can cause Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT), which is very dangerous and as there is a blood clot in their veins.

An example is this can happen a lot after plane travel, as people cannot move around a lot in their chairs.  Also after operations where people also have not been able to move around much.

You also need to make sure they do not get any other problems such as getting neck, back or knee pain, from being on their side, or front, all the time. Joint and other issues will happen if they are not in a good posture when they are on their side.

The tennis ball solution for if your roommate snores

By putting a tennis ball, strongly glued or sewn into the back of their boxer shorts, pajamas, or whatever they wear. It will be uncomfortable for your roommate to go onto their back.

The tennis ball method will stop them sleeping on their back!

Of course, your roommate should not use this, if they have a back problem or any other such issue.   Sleeping on their side can put extended pressure on their knees and so on.  So like all solutions, your roommate should not use it, if they have these problems.

Body pillow

You can set up duvets, or pillows, on their bed alongside the entire length of where your roommate’s body would be.

So your roommate sleeps on their side.

It is a bit like creating a fence, that goes up against your roommate’s entire body.

The body pillow is a very mild technique, but it can be enough to work or help reduce their snoring. It is something you would have to build yourself. We have not seen body pillows that you can purchase.

They sleep with their head higher

Make roommate’s head higher up, so it is more vertical while they are sleeping.

If their head is higher up, their nasal passages will be more open, so they snore less than if they are sleeping flat on their back.

A bit like how people often sleep in a hospital bed….

With these solutions, your roommate’s head position is not as vertical as if they were sleeping in a chair but is at least still more vertical than it otherwise would be.

There are many methods for making sure your roommate’s head higher when they are asleep.

No need to spend money on this!

Your roommate could use more pillows, a foam wedge, have rises or blocks at the head of their bed.  You can buy these things, or improvise by using other objects to do the same job.

There are beds where the head area can recline upwards, but this is, of course, a costly solution.

9, Your roommate snores, because of sleep apnea

Sleep apnea can cause snoring and is very common.

It is where people stop breathing while they sleep.  People can have had it for a lifetime, never knowing that they had it.

How sleep apnea causes snoring

When a person with sleep apnea stops breathing, the next their body quickly starts breathing again.

When your roommate starts breathing again, it can be quite dramatic.

Loud breathing noise, like they are desperate for breath and also snoring sounds.

The monster awakes!!

What to do next.

Your roommate should go and see a doctor if they have it, as it can cause other problems.  There are many things that doctors can do to cure sleep apnea.

I also recommend reading proper medical websites like these articles on WebMD, or this one from the Mayo Clinic .

I have no medical qualifications, and it needs someone proper for this.

10, You will get used to your roommate snoring and be able to sleep

Usually, after about five days, the body gets used to the sound of your roommate’s snores.

It does not get scared by the loud noise, wanting to protect itself and so stay awake.

When people move to new areas, there are often new sounds like traffic noise, birds chirping, people talking outside.   Even building work and machinery making noises at odd times.

An example of when the body has to get used to new sounds is when someone moves from the countryside to the city.

It may seem like a big factory next to you, like being in hell with monsters, or something equally insane.

The body is fantastic though and can get used to anything!!!

You can get used to it!  You are not a delicate little flower.

It is a bit like training yourself to be able to sleep through your roommate’s snores.

Most people after five days can comfortably sleep with their roommate’s snoring.  It is not fun for those five days and the sleepless nights during that time are awful.

You can do it, bear through it.  I believe in you!

Often it has to get to the point that their body is so tired, it has to sleep.  Then the body adjusts because it has to.

You grew up having your own bedroom

If you were an only child when you grew up, or had a bedroom all to yourself.

The problem is, you will be even less used to someone snoring.

People who shared with a sibling are often used to snoring and other noises.

You can get used to it, but as you have had your room to sleep in all your life so far, where it is just you.  It will take a bit longer.

You can do it!

11, Record your roommate snoring, when they are asleep


Most people like to think they do not snore.  We all want to believe we are perfect.

I am amazing!

Oh dear…

The irony is that people who say they do not snore, are not the ones awake to hear it when they are asleep.

Yes, we are all delusional.

The roommates who most often think they do not snore, are the people who have been sleeping by themselves, for most of their lives.

Such as roommates who used to live at home at their parents, having a room to themselves.  They have an image of themselves that no one else has told them is wrong.

They are the kind of person who thinks they can sing, goes on a talent contest and people laugh.

How to record them snoring

1st, Get their permission

It is best to ask them if you can record them snoring.  You may think your roommate will be okay with it and you are probably right.

However by you recording them snoring, without their permission.  You are giving your roommate permission, that it is acceptable to do other things to you, without their consent.

It is not that big a step away, for them to film you while you are asleep.

You may have to do it, but make it clear to your roommate that the recording will be kept private.

If they do not let you, then jokily or politely challenge them.    Your roommate may have said that they do not snore.  So you say to them, if they do not snore, then you will just be recording no noise at all.

2nd, How to record them

If you have a phone with a good microphone, then a recording app on that should be okay.

Test the microphone to see how sensitive it is and the best position to put it in.  It might need to be quite close to your roommate.

It is amazing how having the phone’s microphone at different angles and distances from your roommate can massively increase, or decrease, the noise that is picked up.

The sound from your roommate’s mouth will go more in some directions and than others.  Also, different parts of your room will insulate different amounts of noise.

If you use a specialist sound recording device, check if it has a directional, or omnidirectional microphone.

Directional microphones are designed for when recording something specific, and you do not want to pick up any other sounds.  Like a person is speaking into it and you do not want to pick up any background noise.

A directional microphone needs to be pointed precisely at your roommate’s mouth, or it will not pick up the sound.

An omnidirectional microphone picks up the sound from everywhere, not just the person speaking directly into it.

We recommend listening to the recording before you show it to your roommate.  You may also want to cut the recording, so they listen to the noisiest bits.  You can easily cut a recording using the software on most smartphones.  There is also lots of free online software, that can do this.

We also like the ‘Snore Lab’ app which is excellent for recording snoring.

12, Ear plugs


When people tell me ‘my roommate snores, I can’t sleep, what do I do’.  The easiest and most popular solution that works best is earplugs.

They are quick to use, easy and most people find them comfortable and convenient.

Some people like noise canceling headphones, and we will refer to those as well.

Foam earplugs:

To use foam earplugs.  You roll them into a thin cylinder, put them into your ear, and they expand to fill your ear.

Foam earplugs reduce the noise by about 33 decibels which for most people, is more than enough for getting to sleep in most environments.

It is very tempting to use a set for more than one night, but as bacteria and dirt breeds in them.  You can get an ear infection and pain. The infection could even cause damage to your hearing!

Just washing them may get rid of the dirt, but not the bacteria.

If you are using ear plugs every night, you will get through a packet of them quite quickly, and this cost adds up.

Still totally worth it though!

Silicone earplugs:

Silicone ones are more comfortable than foam ones.  You put them in year ear, and they mold to the shape of your ear canal.

The disadvantage over foam earplugs is that they only reduce noise by on average 22 decibels and not on average 33 decibels.  Silicone earplugs are also more expensive.

If the instructions allow it, you can reuse them if you wash them each time.

Put them into warm soapy water, then rub away the dirt and wax.  The next step is to wash away the soap.  Washing away the soap is needed, so it does not damage the earplug and act as an irritant on your skin.  The last step is to dry them.

There are different designs of earplugs, such as for shooting, playing loud music and so on.  Here we are just referring to the ones for sleeping.

Ear plugs are not a good long term solution, because of the health risks

a, Ear wax impaction

Ears produce ear wax, which is vital for protecting the skin and tissue from water, bacteria, and fungi.  It also needed for lubrication.

Earplugs stop the wax from naturally draining out of the ear and so there’s a build up.  This can cause leaky discharges, infections, tinnitus and hearing loss.

If you use earplugs, it’s essential to clean your ear canal, every day, or at least very regularly.   This is to stop the ear wax from building up, which is called impaction.

b, Ear infections

It is so tempting to reuse an earplug.  Earplugs cost money, and you might be tempted if you have run and not bought new ones.  So you say to yourself, that you will do it ‘just one time.’

For your sake, you should not reuse an earplug if it is not designed to be reused, or you have not washed it in line with their instructions!!!

There will be a bacteria build up in your ear, and that can lead to hearing loss.

c, You may not hear things while you are asleep that you need to hear

Examples are a fire alarm.

13, Relaxation techniques to send you to sleep, even if your roommate snores

People often skip these, even though they can be surprisingly powerful.

When your body is so relaxed, it just goes to sleep and is not concerned about your snoring roommate.

I use one, and it has saved me on so many occasions.   Nowadays mainly when I get insomnia as I am not a good sleeper.

I say this because many people who cannot get to sleep when someone else is snoring, are also light sleepers.

There are two basic types:

a, Basic relaxation methods: They use techniques for you to focus on muscles and other parts of your body.   As you focus on these things, you relax.  Once you are very relaxed, you go to sleep.

b, Suggestion techniques:  Where you suggest to yourself, that you are going to sleep.

If you are going to use any suggestion techniques, we strongly recommend using a trusted and respectable therapist for this, because it is going into the area of hypnotherapy.

It can be quite dangerous if you are given a keyword, that when you hear you go to sleep.  We recommend staying away from that, as it can be used and abused.  It is not good for people to plant suggestions into your head.  They are powerful, but also dangerous.

The technique which is good, is where the therapist teaches you to say to yourself that you go to sleep, so you go to sleep.   Such as you say to yourself that you are sleepy.  It is equally important though that the therapist teaches you how to come out as well.

We recommend having done these techniques at least four times with the therapist, before doing it on your own.

Some people do not like these techniques because they feel out of control, although it is the subconscious doing this stuff.  Most of what a person does is subconscious.  You can only ever hypnotize yourself, and it is up to you if you go along with any hypnotic suggestions, all people have free will.

Please do treat this stuff with care though, it works.  Like all things, it can go very wrong, if you or the therapist, does not know what they are doing, or abuse it.

c, Other techniques:  Breathing exercises, mindfulness, meditation, and guided imagery.

All of these work well but do need practice.

The Sleep Foundation may be an excellent place to start.   Although their patients usually need help with insomnia, we found these techniques also work well for getting to sleep if your roommate snores.

14, Does your roommate have allergies

For example, a dust allergy can cause snoring.

If this is the case, then you both need to use hypoallergenic pillows sheets and pillows.  Make sure everything is clean and dust free. Even the places you may not usually see, like overhead cupboards and ceiling fans.

Clean your pillows every couple of weeks using the Air Fluff Cycle in the dryer.   Replace your pillows every six months.  The idea is to make sure there are no dust mites and bed bugs.

Although the term is a dust allergy, it is usually the feces produced by dust mites and other organisms, that make allergic people get the allergy symptoms.

There are many allergies your roommate could have.

Your roommate may not even know they have allergies.    They have always been like this, so they think it is normal.

They have not shared a room with anyone, so there has been nobody to see and tell them they have a problem.

15, Bring it up with your roommate quickly

If you are getting a lack of sleep, as your roommate snores.  Your judgment starts to go, you will get irritable and all sorts of other problems that come from sleep deprivation.

A crazy annoying mad person is not the best at working with others and solving a problem!

You need to bring it up with your roommate, at least the morning after it has happened.

Not just because you need to solve the problem.

The more days you have gone without enough sleep, your judgment and irritability will get worse and worse.  The less good you will be at resolving the problem.

You will get angry, frustrated and exhausted, which will affect your relationship with your roommate and other people.

You will be able to deal with your roommate less well, and so your actions could make the situation even worse.  Best to sort it immediately, while you still have the mental ability to do so.

If your roommate’s snoring is so severe that it is not excusable, you may need to wake them up during the night, to try and get them to stop it.

What happens if you do not alert your roommate to it quickly

We have seen it again and again, that the roommate who cannot sleep, does not communicate about it well with the snoring roommate, only because they are so tired.

They become angry, bad tempered and all the things that make them worse at problem solving. They even make matters worse.

They cannot behave well, do things that make them look bad and not the roommate that snores.

It can get so bad that they do something wrong and even get in trouble for it.

The roommate, the college and everyone else blames them.

As you get more annoyed, you annoy everyone else too.

If you are too sleep deprived to solve a problem, it can be best to do nothing until you are in a fit state to do something.

Problems that come from sleep deprivation

There have been loads of sleep deprivation studies as it can affect so many things.  Driving a car, doing other essential tasks, as well as other health concerns.

A person who has not slept for 24 hours, has brain activity, equivalent to a person who is legally drunk.

A person who is legally drunk has a BAC of 0.08.  A person who has not slept for 24 hours is slightly worse at 0.1.

Issues include having a hard time focusing, losing hand-eye coordination, memory problems, and some long term effects as well.

So as well as sleep deprivation damaging your college career from not being able to perform as well.  It will be harder for you to do other things, like resolve the problem that your roommate snores.

16, How to tell your roommate that they snore

1st step, Tell them gently

However mad you may be about it.  The first time you tell your roommate
Be gentle, kind, sympathetic and compassionate.

You get more with sugar than with vinegar. Then your roommate wants to sort out their snoring for you.

You may want this sorted out now, be incredibly angry and annoyed.

Just anything to make them stop!!!!!

You are angry at how they have stopped you sleeping, sleep deprived and want revenge!

Being too hard early on can lead to consequences.

Once you push it too far, they may want revenge, you offend them, and it is hard to come back from there.

If you go in hard first, your roommate may see it as unfair. They have not even been told about their snoring or given a chance to sort it out.

First, give your roommate a chance to be helpful.

For some more sensitive roommates, so you do not damage their pride, feelings and they do not lose face.  It may be best not to tell them directly, say it indirectly and subtly.

Something subtle, like you are having trouble sleeping because they snore.  A small throwaway comment.

It means you are not insulting them, it is more about you and less about them.  This may be overly polite though.

If your roommate is helpful and considerate, you will have a much easier time with this one.

 2nd step, Be more direct

If your roommate does not seem to care that their snoring is stopping you from sleeping and has no interest in sorting it out. You can be more direct that they snore.

Tell them that it is unfair on you and it needs to be sorted out.

If your roommate can tell you are not going to back down on this one and will stand firm, because their snoring is not fair on you.  Hopefully they will be willing to work with you on this one.

3rd step, argue your corner

Your roommate may be so stubborn or used to being allowed to snore.  Then you may need to argue your case.

Be careful not to insult them too much with this one or start a fight.  You have a right though to state the facts.

It is the feelings and emotions you use, that will make the difference, between getting your point across, or offending them.

You have to express your needs, your side of the story and what they are doing is not fair on others.

You can show how it is not just them in the world, what they do affects others.

It is affecting your work, social life and so on.

It is also affecting other people as well as you, because you are not able to do your duties for others.    Then mention the things you cannot do well for others, as you are sleep deprived.   Maybe you help with a college society or other things.

This is even more powerful because it is then about others and not about you.  It makes your roommate look even more selfish.

4th step, tell them while they are sleeping that they snore

When they are asleep, ask them to stop snoring.

This will make some people stop snoring.

Say it to them in a quiet voice, so you do not wake them up. In a firm way, so they know they must stop snoring.

You could also tell them, in the same way, to turn onto their side as this stops many people from snoring.

Legally you may need to be careful not to touch them.

When you first start doing this, even if it does stop your roommate from snoring, they may soon begin again.   If you do this many times over a few nights, you can retrain them.

5th step, wake them up when they snore

If you have done steps 1-4 and they are still snoring.

It’s not fair that your roommate snores.  You have to wake your roommate up.

Do it as gently as you can, to get the least possible reaction from them.  You are only waking your roommate up enough, so they stop snoring.  It helps if you can keep having a good relationship with them.

Also, if you wake your roommate up in a way that startles them, you are permitting them to do the same to you.

It’s important not to do it as a punishment to them, or things can escalate.  However, annoyed you may be!

Some people say they cannot help but snore.   However many can do what is needed to stop snoring, if it inconveniences them enough.

If they cannot stop snoring by you asking them in their sleep.  You need your roommate to do some of the anti snoring things in this guide.

If these do not work, then please look at other parts of this guide, including how to get the university or college to change your room.

How not to escalate things and make them react

Try at first to talk about how it affects you.  It means it is about your issue and not being nasty about your roommate.

Try also not to make it too personal.  Like you are saying that your roommate is a bad person because they snore.  It is a thing that is happening, not about them as a person.

Separate what they are doing, from how they are as a person.

Of course, if they then are not bothering about their snoring and how it is affecting you.   Also not doing anything about it, or even trying to resolve the problem.  It is about your roommate and you can take it further.

Tell your roommate before your friends

Your roommate may not like it if you tell your friends that your roommate snores before you say it to them.  Especially if your roommate does not know they are snoring, or that it is causing you a problem.

They may not like you saying about it to your friends at all.

Your roommate has not been given a chance to sort it out first.

If, after you have told your roommate about it, they do not take steps to sort out their snoring.  Then, of course, you should ask your friends for advice, and you may need support from them.

Your friends can support you, confirm that you are in the right and your roommate is in the wrong.

Also, you have a right to share experiences with your friends to get emotional support.  That is partially what friends are for.

Peer pressure from other people can be a powerful way to make people do things.  So it could be that you have to tell other people, so they do it.

If your roommate sorted out their snoring and does not want you to tell others about this, then maybe you should respect this.   They have done the right thing for you. No need to embarrass them. Especially if they are using some of the less attractive anti snoring devices to solve the problem.

Gossiping, saying negative things about them just for fun and not to be helpful, is something else.  That is not getting help, support, and advice from friends; it is just nasty about people.

How to get the point through to them

Try and express how it is affecting you.  Like an actor will express their emotions and feelings.  People are often moved more by emotions and feelings, than logic.

Explain how sleep deprivation as your roommate snores, is affecting your sleep and so social life, work and so on.

Use emotions, feelings, and drama to express this.  Like you are telling a story.

At first, try not to be angry, do it in a way that they sympathize with your situation.

Of course, if this does not work, you may have to get more aggressive.  You need to stand up for yourself with this one.  You need your sleep.

What kind of person are they

You need to put it in a way that they can relate to.  If the person loves sports, they will understand if it is affecting your sports.

Also, the way you explain it should fit the nature of the person, their personality type.

If the person is more logical, then use logical ways to explain it.  A bit like how a computer programmer will be a more logical person.

If they are more of a feeling person, use feelings to express yourself.  Such as if your roommate is an artist.

If they are more of an action person, then explain how it is affecting you from doing things.  Like if your roommate is a sporty person, or likes doing things, rather than thinking or feeling about them.

17, Make sure you are direct and not passive aggressive

When you first have the problem that your roommate snores.  You can say this to them gently at first.  Just say something subtle.

However, if they do not take the necessary steps to sort it out, you need to be direct.

It’s easy to think that being passive aggressive will sort it out.   Passive aggressive is where you say about the issue, but pretend you have not said anything.

Usually this will annoy your roommate and annoy you.

It can be tempting to do be passive aggressive, just because you do not want the conflict.  However, you need your sleep and need to be direct with your roommate about this.

18, Getting the best results from your roommates efforts to stop snoring

Ultimately you have a massive reason to try and get your roommate to stop snoring, as you are the one loosing sleep over it.

They do not, as they think they are unaffected.  Especially if they do not know about how serious sleep apnia can be.

That is why we made this a big resource, so you are tooled and equipped to advise and help your roommate.  You will have the knowledge and be able to do the steps needed for them.

You can also advise them with real information.  This is especially useful if your roommate has made assumptions, that are not based on fact.  Often these are assumptions, like it is not possible to stop snoring, or the solutions are too hard to do.

You can help explain to them what options are out there and how they are easy to do.

Most of all, if you purchase the items for your roommate, set them up and show them how to use them.   You will get the quickest and best possible results.

Basically if you do the work for them, they will hopefully go along with it.  More than if you make them pay for the equipment and do the work.

19, Motivating your roommate to sort out their snoring

Different roommates will have different motivations, to stop snoring and get it under control.

Imagine if your roommate got a boyfriend or girlfriend and they complained about your roommate’s snoring.

You can be sure they will sort it out.

The motivation to have and keep a romantic partner is a powerful one, far more than getting a roommate.

So even telling your roommate it will cause them problems getting a partner, or keeping one.  It can be a motivator for your roommate to get their snoring problem under control.

Of course, this may not do it by itself, but it can be an influential factor that helps.

Each person has a different motivation that may make them sort out their snoring problem.  You need to find theirs. For example, social pressure can work well.

You tell your friends how wrong and unfair your roommate’s snoring it, how they cannot even be bothered to try proper preventative measures.  As a result, your roommate is embarrassed and sorts it out.

You, of course, must not be unfair in how you do this, but if they are unreasonable, you have tried every other way, it is seriously affecting your sleep, and it is the truth.  Doing this for the right reasons is justified.

20, Use a humidifier to reduce how much your roommate snores

Humidifiers put water vapor into the air to make the air more moist and humid.  Just like a kettle would.

Even a warm bowl of water in a room will do this a bit.

They will only help stop snoring if your roommate has specific things causing it:

a, If your roommate has allergies.  An upper respiratory illness like a cold, caused by bacteria, or a virus.  A throat infection, or dry mouth.

The moisture from the humidifier makes the mucus runnier, so it drains away more.  As the mucus has drained away, there is not so much to cause snoring.

By having less mucus, your roommate’s throat will be less swollen and irritated. So their throat will be clearer and cause less snoring.

b, People with sleep apnea can have a dry mouth, which helps cause snoring.

c, If your roommate has a dry throat.

If your roommate does not have these conditions that cause them to snore, it is probably not worth trying out a humidifier.

Get a good humidifier and clean it regularly as per the instructions.  Otherwise, mold and mildew can grow in them.  These can cause allergies and other health problems, which can increase your roommate’s snoring.

There are two kinds.  Warm air humidifiers heat the water so that it goes into the air as a kettle does.  A cold mist humidifier works by having a small metal disc that vibrates at an ultrasonic frequency.  The disc breaks the water particles down into a fine mist that goes into the air.

Warm air humidifiers get less mold, as the heat kills them.  However be careful if there could be any children or small animals around.

If you use a cold mist humidifier, it is even more important to change the filters when needed and clean them, to reduce any mold problems.

21, Make friends with your roommate, so they want to sort out their snoring

If your roommate sees you as a friend, they will want to sort out the problem more.

They will want to help you out as you are a friend and will be more open to when you compliment them for sorting it out.  Also, they will not want to lose you as a friend.

To do this, try and get them involved in your life and your peer group.  So they become a part of your life.

Also, take an interest in their life and give them emotional support through the challenge of doing the things needed to stop snoring

Be careful not to exploit people.   If you are going to do this, you need to be a genuinely good friend to your roommate. Not just dump them as soon as they stop snoring.

22, Moving the room around, or redesigning it

There are a lot of little things that can be done. Each make a little difference that can add up to enough for you to sleep.

a, Change so your head, is at the foot of you bed.

When your beds are side by side, your heads are at the same end of the beds and so closer to each other.

By sleeping so your head is, where your feet should be in your bed.  Your head is further away from their head

b, Sound insulation boards

You can get these quite cheaply on Amazon.  They are like used in music studios to absorb sound, so it does not reverberate off the walls.  It can be suprisingly effective.

Even better is if you can use them, to create a screen between you and your roommate.

You can use other bits of furniture, that you put between your roommate’s bed and yours, such as large wardrobes.   That you also put sound insulating materials on.

c, Material hung from ceiling around bed

You can get material that hangs from the ceiling and around your bed, a good thick material will provide more sound absorbance.

A curtain rail, or something like that, put on the ceiling to hang the material from.  Make sure you get permission from the college, before attaching things to their ceilings.

d, Out of sight is out of mind

If you do something, so when you are trying to get to sleep, you are not able to see your roommate. It can be a bit easier to cope with their snoring and get to sleep.

It is amazing how if they are separate to you, as you cannot see them.  What your roommate does, does not affect you so much, as they are not part of your world.

Maybe put a wardrobe or drawers between you and your roommate, so you cannot see them when you are trying to get to sleep.  It is to create a divider as much as possible, to make it like they are in a different room.

We have to be clear that these will only help a little.

23, Use a fan, humidifier or something to mask the noise

Using an electical device that creates a noise can be a perfect solution.  Snoring sounds can be hard to sleep through, they are erratic, change and can be quite scary.

The buzzing of a fan, humidifier, air conditioning unit or some other unchanging is easier to get used to.  They are predictable and unthreatening.

There are loads of electronic devices you can use; above are just some of them.  The device needs to produce a predictable and unchanging noise.

You set the device up, so it does not change the temperature of the room or do anything., like a fan that blows at a wall, or away from you.

24, Get your Resident Advisor (RA) involved

If your roommate is not being helpful with trying to sort out their snoring, a good Resident Advisor (RA) will also be happy to mediate between you and your roommate.

If the RA cannot solve the problem with mediation, they can help in many ways. Including getting the university to change your room.

Another person may be okay sharing with your roommate that snores, as they are a heavier sleeper than you. That person may also like to share with your roommate, as they are similar personalities and get on well with them.

25, Get your college to change your room

The first stage is to go to is the Resident Advisor (RA).  Explain the problem and what you have done to sort it.

Get the RA involved early, so they can see the steps you have taken and that you have done your best.

Your RA may think you are over precious.  If the snoring is scarily loud though, you may need a recording of it to show how bad it is.

Explain how bad it is the problems you are having because of it, how it is affecting your studies and life.

Ultimately if it is at a point where no one could be reasonably expected to sleep, and they will not change your room.  Then you may have legal grounds, best to consult a lawyer about this.  Only mention lawyers to the university at a later stage, once you have gone to the top of the organization.

If they change your room, will your new roommate snore as well

Many people snore.  You may find that your new roommate snores just as much as your previous one.  The university may not move you a second time for the same reason.

So if you can, speak to the person who shared a room with your new roommate, to see if they also snore and if there is any other information you can get about them.

Maybe best not to move, if your new roommate is going to be just as bad or worse.

Research your new roommate before you move

If you are sleep deprived.  You might be in such a rush to move, that you do not check out your new roommate.

The college may have a spare bed in that room because no one else wants to share with them either.  Worse than snoring, they could be a thief or a bully.

Make sure you go over there, speak to other people on the same floor.   Be friends with the potential new roommate’s neighbors.

Speak to your new roommate’s neighbors, in a way that they are happy to tell you things if they do have something negative to say about your new roommate.  They will probably only do so if they are confident you will keep it a secret.

Make sure you do so, so you become the kind of person people are happy to tell secrets.   People are happy to say secrets to you, as you are genuinely a person who does keep secrets.

Of course, also speak to their previous roommates as well if you can.

26, If university or college will not change your room

A note from your teachers saying how tiredness is affecting your work

First get evidence of how the sleep deprivation is affecting you.  See if your college professors, tutors, sports coach and other people to get something in writing.

They might write a note saying how tired you are in class and it is affecting your work.  You can ask them for this information as a performance evaluation.

Be really nice to them, to try and get them to do it.  Stress how much you need it.  Do not say that you need it for legal reasons, as they may not want to cause trouble.  Just that you need a note saying you are sleepy in class and it is affecting your work, so you can get a new room.

You get more with honey than with vinegar.

Other evidence how badly your roommate snores

Also get evidence of how loud the snoring is.  Maybe a recording of it.

Write in a diary notes of how it is affecting you.   Eg. heavy snoring from 2 am to 3 am, impossible to sleep.

Also, write down the steps you have done to try and resolve it. These notes show you are reasonable and done all you can.

If your roommate gets aggressive or threatens you when you talk to them about this.  Even to a point where you do not feel safe due to what the may due.

All these things add up to a case.

If it is severe enough the college may have a legal obligation to change you to a room, so you are not suffering from this hardship.

We have seen times where the college will not take the student’s position and requests seriously.   It has needed their parents getting involved for the college to do anything.

Then the parents have had to slowly, step by step take it higher and higher with the college.  Eventually, it may need the parents threatening to take their child out of the college or take level action.

Make sure you get the right advice for this.  Also, keep notes of everything that has happened, so you cannot be blamed as being your fault.  Keep these notes to yourself, and they are only for if you need them later on.

Of course first, start with being nice, this is only for if all that fails.

27, Keep things friendly with your roommate

When you are sleep deprived, you will become irritable, annoyed and have worse judgment.

When you are angry and annoyed, it is easy to make others angry and annoyed as well.  It is like a disease that spreads.

You will be annoyed with your roommate for causing all this with their snoring!!!

It is essential though to stay friendly with your roommate until you have seen that being friendly is not working.

This one issue can very easy escalate until you are enemies about other things as well.  Things that are trivial and have nothing to do with snoring.

Both of you are insulted and wanting revenge!

You need to keep things positive if it is only this one issue that is your problem.  Try not to raise it to be about other things as well.

Roommates sharing a room are vulnerable to each other, and things can get nasty if you fall out.

Especially try and stay friendly with your roommate if they cannot help snoring and they have tried all the things to try and stop it.

28, Decongestants

Decongestants reduce nasal congestion, by reducing the blood vessels in the nose.  They can also reduce snoring, but are only a very temporary fix.

Your roommate uses them as a spray up the nose, or as a pill.  In most states they can be bought over the counter, but in some states need a prescription from a doctor.

Your roommate should only use them for a few days!

If used as a nose spray, their effect is more isolated to the nose.  Decongestants should only be used for a few days because the problem may rebound due to rebound congestion and so get worse. Your roommate can also become dependent on it.

Oral decongestants affect the blood vessels in all the body, not just the nose.  So it can increase your roommate’s blood pressure and nervousness.

Decongestants usually are taken to make your roommate more comfortable if they have a cold, flu, hay fever, some allergic reactions, or sinusitis.

You and your roommate should read the instructions before using them, especially as some people with certain conditions and situations should not use them.

We prefer the natural ways to clear your roommate’s nose, which are higher up this list.

29, Never get resentful

Being resentful, self-loathing and other emotions like that are very damaging to you.  They can even cause health problems.

If your roommates snores and you are getting these emotions and feelings.  If your roommate is not going to stop snoring very soon, you need to move room quickly.

Nothing is worth damaging your health.

30, Healthy lifestyle methods for your roommate to sort out their snoring

These work well to stop someone from snoring.  I put this section near the end though, because these solutions involve healthy lifestyle changes that roommates usually are less likely to do.

Worse than that, even if people start doing them.  They often do not manage to keep them up.

They involve changes, and although people know these changes are a good idea, people do not want to do them.

If your roommate was considering changing to a healthier lifestyle. Their snoring and the social problems it causes could be the final thing that makes them do it, especially if it is making their sleep apnea worse.

Although usually, it is trying to get a girlfriend or boyfriend, or a stern warning from a doctor, that makes most people make the changes.

I have put lots of facts here, so you can explain to your roommate why these issues are making them snore.

People often do not know that an unhealthy lifestyle also increases their snoring.

Drinking less alcohol

Alcohol is a sedative; it makes people drowsy and sleepy.  It also makes them relax, and this affects their muscles.

Alcohol makes their jaw and throat muscles relax, so their airway collapses and gets in the way of airflow.

It also interferes with their breathing while they sleep.  These things increase snoring.

Alcohol will dehydrate your roommate, and this includes their mouth and throat muscles. So air vibrates around more and dries out their throat.  This all makes their snoring louder.

Alcohol can also cause sleep apnea.

If your roommate says that no one else has told they snore and use this to say you are wrong.  Maybe your roommate only recently started drinking more, like if they have just left living with their parents and become old enough to drink.  Drinking alcohol that has made your roommate’s snoring worse.

Loose weight

Many things that could make your roommate go through the challenge of losing weight.  Top of the list are to get a partner, look good and be more healthy.

Being overweight can cause sleep apnea, and that is also a big one.

If you are causing a lot of hassle about it for them, this may be a factor in their decision to lose weight, but not a big one.  Also, just because they manage to lose weight, does not mean they will manage to keep it down.

It’s still good to know how being overweight causes a person to snore and how it happens.   Even losing a few pounds, can noticeably reduce snoring.

Neck fat: This compresses the upper airway, especially when a person is lying down.   It even makes the internal diameter of the throat smaller, so it is more likely to collapse while your roommate is asleep.

If someone has a neck size of 16 inches or more, they are very likely to snore.

Central obesity, which is fat at the midriff and chest:   Your roommate’s diaphragm is pushed up by their belly fat.  Also, the fat on the chest compresses their ribcage.

It also reduces the lower lung capacity.  So there is less airflow, and that is used to prevent their throat collapsing by keeping some shape in it.

Fatty tissue at the back of the throat: This flaps around and vibrates, to create a snoring noise.

Fat increases snoring, but it is good not to go too over the top with this one.  Thin people can snore as well.

Some people put on weight, and then they snore more, this is a good way of knowing that weight is causing them to snore.

Stop smoking

Suprise, surprise smoking helps a person to snore more.

Sedative medications and sleeping tablets

These also can make a person snore more.  Alcohol is a sedative as well.

31, Get your roommate to see a doctor

Some people only trust a medical professional.

Your roommate may only believe that they snore and it can be sorted out when it is a doctor saying it.

A doctor can confirm using tests that they snore, the problem can be solved, and there are solutions to sort it out.   If they have sleep apnea, a doctor will explain why it’s a problem and needs to be sorted out.

Some doctors will recommend a sleep study, where your roommate goes to sleep for a night in a medical environment.  During the sleep study, professionals monitor your roommate using lots of equipment.

The doctor may also lend other electronic monitoring equipment to your roommate for them to use while sleeping.

Regrettably, if your roommate does not have medical insurance that will cover it, they may not want to go to the doctor or be able to afford to go.

It may sound ridiculous for you to pay for it, but if your roommate’s snoring, is destroying your college experience.  You may find it is cheaper to pay for your roommate to go to a doctor, than the cost of wasting your college experience.

You may only be willing to pay for the diagnosis and not the cost of sorting it out.  Once your roommate has been told of the issues by the doctor, hopefully, they will want to pay for sorting it out.

If your parents are paying for your university fees, they may agree with this.  They may also get involved in getting the university to change your room, so you get a new roommate.

The fact you have to pay for your roommate’s medical advice to get their snoring stopped, shows there is a real problem.  The university may listen to your parent’s concerns more seriously than when you say it and so change your room for you.

32, CPAP machines

CPAP machines are used to stop sleep apnea, the way they work can also cure snoring.  I know people that use them have and as well as ending their sleep apnea, the machines have reduced their snoring,

They are $500-$1000, so are rarely used just to solve snoring.  Most people can only afford to get one if their insurance pays for it.  Even then, if it is just mild sleep apnea, an insurance company will often not pay for it.  They have to have proper sleep apnea.

Before going ahead, it is essential your roommate goes to a medical professional for advice and help on these.

I recommend reading Wikipedia, Positive airway pressure, or, How Does a CPAP Machine Work to Treat Sleep Apnea?.

Writer: Ian Taylor

roommate expert

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Symptoms, Self-Help, and Treatment Alternatives

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