Why Do I Snore?

The Causes of Snoring

Snoring is often seen as an annoying, common habit. However, did you know that it could actually be a sign of an underlying health problem? There are so many things that could be causing you to snore. Before you look into the different treatments available, it helps to know exactly what is causing the problem.

Everybody is different and what causes one person to snore might not be the cause of the next person’s snoring. Therefore it’s vital that you visit your doctor to rule out any underlying medical conditions and to see where the problem lies.

Snoring is often caused by a variety of factors. Just some of the most common causes include:

  • Smoking
  • Weight gain
  • Sleeping position
  • Alcohol
  • Allergies
  • Colds

Sometimes it could be a mixture of the above that’s causing you to snore.


When you smoke, it tends to irritate the lining within the nasal cavities. It can also cause the throat to swell up. Once this happens the airflow is restricted and that leads to snoring. The more you smoke, the higher the chance that you’ll start to snore. It’s recommended that if you can’t cut down completely, you have your last cigarette roughly 4 hours before you go to bed. This will give the irritation time to settle down.

Weight gain

If you’re overeating and not doing enough exercise, you’ll start to gain weight. This includes an increase in the amount of fat around the neck. The more pressure there is against the throat, the less your muscles will be able to keep the airways open. This is when snoring occurs. Even if you’ve only gained a few pounds, it can still affect your snoring. If you’ve noticed any changes in your weight, now could be the time to start exercising more and eating a sensible diet.

Sleeping position

If you frequently tend to sleep on your back, this can lead to problems with snoring. Trying to sleep on your side or front will help to eliminate the snoring, or at least minimise it.


Alcohol causes the muscles within the body to relax. This includes causing the Oropharynx to collapse. When this happens it causes you to snore. Sleeping pills have a similar affect so could also be part of the problem if you take them.


When you have an allergic reaction, it can cause the nasal passages to become congested. The disruption in airflow leads to snoring. Allergies are becoming more common and it’s estimated that they affect around 10-25% of the population. Not only can they cause snoring at night time, but they can also make it more difficult to sleep.


Similar to allergies, if you have a cold your airways are often congested. This can lead to temporary snoring until the airways clear again.

These are the most common causes of snoring, though as mentioned earlier there can be serious underlying health problems contributing to it. It’s important to visit your doctor so you can rule out any major causes and before you can start to treat it.