Only 5% of women aged 30 snore. At a certain age, however, women are no longer inferior to men in terms of snoring. From the age of 45, about 45% of all women snore regularly. But snoring in women is still a taboo subject. Women do not like to talk about it, at least not when it concerns themselves.
Why do women snore more with increasing age and especially during the menopause?
Snoring causes: Why do men and women snore?
A narrowing of the upper respiratory tract causes snoring. The breathing air is drawn in faster and with higher pressure. The slackened tissue in the mouth and throat begins to vibrate and flutter in the airflow - known as the typical snoring noise. Some causes of snoring affect both sexes. These include e.g.:
- Overweight: Being overweight is not only noticeable in the form of hip and belly fat. Fat deposits can also occur in the throat area, causing a narrowing of the upper airways.
- Alcohol consumption: Excessive alcohol consumption and the taking of medication, e.g. sleeping pills, slackens the muscles. Snoring is encouraged.
- Age: With increasing age the muscle tension decreases and the tissue slackens. This also applies to the mouth and throat.
Yet, there are also reasons that are specifically responsible for snoring in women.
Specific causes of snoring in women
Many women snore more with increasing age, especially at the beginning of menopause. The reason for this is the change in hormone levels. The female sex hormone estrogen ensures a tight tissue - also in the throat. The higher the estrogen level, the higher the serotonin concentration. The chemical messenger serotonin controls muscle activity and prevents the tissue from slackening. 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 often during pregnancy. On the one hand, the tissue loosens up during pregnancy in order to be flexible enough for the upcoming birth. On the other hand, weight gain plays a role. The extra fat in the throat narrows the upper respiratory tract favouring snoring.
What helps against snoring in women?
When women feel a hormonal imbalance, they can consult their gynaecologist. The gynaecologist can determine the estrogen level in the blood. Foods rich in phytoestrogens can boost estrogen production. These include soy products, peas, lentils, beans, linseed, fruit and vegetables.
If breathing stops occur besides the snoring noise, a visit to a specialist (e.g. ENT doctor) is necessary in any case. He or she can rule out sleep apnoea syndrome and talk about possible treatment options.
In our article How to deal with snoring we have also summarised helpful tips & tricks that help to reduce or prevent snoring. It's worth taking a look!
Tip: Our proven anti snore devices to treat snoring & obstructive sleep apnoea help to prevent snoring and mild to moderate obstructive sleep apnoea.