One Third of Canadian Couples Struggle with Snoring
My husband’s snoring has been known to startle him out of a deep sleep on nights when he’s had a few too many drinks with his buddies. More often, the bed-shaking vibration rouses me and I nudge him, ever so gently (okay, sometimes it’s a shove), so he rolls onto his side and resumes a blessedly silent intake of breath.
Our solution is to plan ahead: I tell him to sleep in the basement if he’s going to stay out late. And in case he forgets the basement plan, I increase my chances of getting a good night’s sleep by jamming in foam earplugs.
Sexy, it isn’t. But for us, snoring is a fact of life—as it is for more than one-third of Canadian couples—so we do what we can to minimize its impact. The Canadian Sleep Review 2016, conducted by a division of Angus Reid, polled adults across the country on their sleep habits and found that 67 per cent of Canadians wish they could get better-quality sleep most nights. Silencing the log sawing would help.
“Snoring is an extremely common problem,” says Brian Rotenberg, an associate professor in the department of otolaryngology and director of the sleep surgery program at Western University, in London, Ont. “About half of adult men and about one-third of adult women snore at night, and the condition ranges in severity from just a little rumble to a freight train coming down the tracks.”
Even gentle snoring can disrupt slumber and lead to chronic sleep deprivation for both snorers and their significant others. In fact, the bed partner of a snuffling sleeper can lose up to one hour of shut-eye each night from being woken by noise, a side effect known as spousal arousal syndrome.
“Snoring can lead to significant disruptions in relationships and intimacy, so it’s a concern, especially when it’s disrupting a partner’s sleep,” says Anu Tandon, an assistant professor in the department of respiratory and sleep medicine at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre in Toronto. Pop culture has long played up snoring as a kind of running gag that tests a couple’s commitment, but it can have more serious ramifications in real life.
Looking to get more shut eye? Here are 7 Surprising Ways to Get More Sleep.