Only 5% of women in their 30s snore. From a certain age, however, women are in no way inferior to men when it comes to snoring: from the age of 45, around 45% of all women snore regularly. However, snoring in women is still a taboo subject: women don't like to talk about it, at least not when it affects them.
Why do women snore as they get older and especially during the menopause?
SNORING: CAUSES IN WOMEN & MEN
Snoring is caused by a narrowing of the upper airways. The breathing air is sucked in faster and with higher pressure. The slack tissue in the mouth and throat begins to vibrate and flutter in the air flow - known as the typical snoring sound. Some causes of snoring affect both genders. These include e.g
- Obesity: Obesity is not only noticeable in the form of love handles and belly fat. Fat deposits can also occur in the throat area, which leads to a narrowing of the airways.
- Alcohol consumption: Excessive alcohol consumption and taking medication, eg sleeping pills, causes the muscles to become slack. Snoring is encouraged.
- Age: With increasing age, muscle tension decreases overall and the tissue slacks. This also applies to the mouth and throat.
However, there are also reasons that are specifically responsible for snoring in women.
SNORING: CAUSES IN WOMEN
Many women snore more as they get older, especially at the onset of menopause. The reason for this is the change in hormone levels . The female sex hormone estrogen ensures tight tissue – including in the throat. The higher the estrogen level, the higher the serotonin concentration. The messenger substance serotonin controls muscle activity and prevents the tissue from becoming slack. During menopause, estrogen production decreases and the soft tissue in the throat area slackens. Snoring noises can occur at night.
Snoring in women also occurs more frequently during pregnancy . On the one hand, the tissue loosens during pregnancy in order to be flexible enough for the forthcoming birth. On the other hand, weight gain plays a role. The extra fat in the throat narrows the upper airway. Snoring is encouraged.
WHAT HELPS AGAINST SNORING IN WOMEN?
If you feel a hormonal imbalance, affected women can consult their gynecologist and have their estrogen levels in their blood measured. Foods rich in phytoestrogens can boost estrogen production. These include, for example, soy products, peas, lentils, beans, linseed, fruit and vegetables.
If, in addition to the snoring noise, there are interruptions in breathing, a trip to a specialist (e.g. ENT doctor) is necessary in any case. This can rule out sleep apnea syndrome and talk about possible treatment options.
In our article Avoid snoring: Tips against snoring , we have also summarized helpful tips that help to reduce or prevent snoring. It's worth taking a look!
Tip : Our medical aids against snoring & sleep apnea help to combat snoring and mild to moderate obstructive sleep apnea.