You may be miffed that the list of undesirable pregnancy symptoms doesn’t stop at cankles, hot flashes, and morning sickness—but includes sudden bouts of snoring, too. But don’t worry; it’s both normal, and short-lived.
Snoring is a typical nocturnal occurrence for expectant mums, with the incidence rising three times higher toward the end of pregnancy.
According to the British Snoring and Sleep Apnoea Association, 23% of mums-to-be rattle the window panes at night—so you’re not alone in your noise-making.
Hormones and weight gain are the primary culprits.
Hormone fluctuations dilate blood vessels, leading to nasal mucous membranes swelling. That constriction in the airways forces you to breathe through your mouth.
“Also as you gain weight in pregnancy, your lungs have less space and also a build-up of fat in the neck tissues narrow your airways can cause more throat breathing – in other words, snoring,” explains Michelle Lyne, Professor Advisor of Education for the Royal College of Midwives.
Of course—you may have a bout of hay fever, or a mild allergy; so think about allergen reduction, like dust, pollen, or pet hair.
Michelle says that snoring is not forever—unless you were doing it before pregnancy, too. In that case, seek treatment for the cause, as chronic snoring has been linked to lower birth weight and higher chance of c-section delivery.
For plain ol’ preggo-induced snoring, the British Snoring and Sleep Apnoea Association suggest herbal nasal sprays, sleeping on your side, and propping your head up with an extra pillow to drain the fluid away from the airways.