You could save your partner’s life just by listening to them sleep

It might sound a bit scary, but watching your partner sleep could actually be good for their health.

Luckily, you don’t have to stare at her intently to save her life – you just have to listen.

Just listening to your partner while they sleep can help save their life


Just listening to your partner while they sleep can help save their lifePhoto credit: Getty

What to watch out for is heavy snoring, one expert explained.

Speaking to The Sun, Dr. Verena Senn, sleep expert at Emma Sleep, says heavy snoring can be a serious problem for many, although it’s often labeled simply as an irritating habit.

She explained: “Sleep apnea is a chronic sleep disorder in which the upper airways become partially or fully obstructed during sleep, leading to a decrease in blood oxygen levels and sleep fragmentation.

“In addition to daytime sleepiness and fatigue, cognitive dysfunction and impaired work performance, sleep apnea has been identified as a risk factor for other clinical outcomes such as hypertension, cardiovascular disease and stroke.”

Sleep apnea is a sleep condition that causes breathing to stop and start repeatedly when you sleep.

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The main symptoms, according to the NHS, are severe fatigue, difficulty concentrating and mood swings.

dr Senn said sleep apnea often goes undetected because it can occur without the patient’s knowledge.

“Sleeping partners can therefore play a crucial role in identifying this serious illness so that it can be treated.

“Milder forms of sleep apnea can be managed by maintaining a regular sleep pattern, losing weight, or stopping smoking,” she added.

There are other signs to look out for when it comes to sleep apnea, and experts say it’s worth seeing your GP if the snoring is really loud.

Many people have no idea that they snore at night – apart from those who wake up panting because there isn’t enough air flowing.

Seeing your partner stop breathing, gasping and snoring is not normal and is something that should see a specialist.

People with obstructive sleep apnea often also suffer from high blood pressure due to the physical stress.

When you stop breathing while you sleep, your nervous system kicks in and raises your blood pressure, releasing stress hormones that also increase your blood pressure over time.

Aside from sleep apnea, according to Dr. Senn have other sleep disorders that can cause health complications.


She said jet lag is a common sleep disorder among people who often travel long distances.

Jet lag occurs when our circadian rhythms, or body clock (our natural and internal sleep-wake cycle) are temporarily disrupted due to changing time zones — this often occurs more frequently when traveling east, she explained.

“When our circadian rhythm gets out of step with our new environment, we can experience headaches, stomach upsets, and difficulty falling asleep at night, as well as daytime sleepiness.

The things you need to know to help your partner stop snoring

If your partner’s snoring is getting a little too much, there is something you can do about it

The NHS recommends the following action:

  • Lose weight: If you are overweight, try exercise and a healthy diet to lose weight. People who are overweight may have extra tissue in their throat that contributes to snoring
  • Change it: Change your sleep pattern and sleep on your side, not you’re back
  • Move: Raise the head of your bed about 4 inches
  • To stop: Quit smoking and reduce alcohol consumption
  • Treat it: Nasal strips or an external nasal dilator
  • Delete it: Treat a stuffy or stuffy nose – if you have a stuffy nose, clear it
  • Adjust: Adjust your sleep pattern. Adults should aim for at least seven hours of sleep a night
  • Make it smaller: Be careful what you eat before bed. Eating large meals or certain foods like dairy products can cause snoring
  • The exercise: Try an Anti-Snoring Exercise – Exercise your mouth and tongue

“Jet lag is fairly common and most will have experienced the effects of jet lag or be able to see the effects.

“As a rule, the adjustment takes one day for each time zone crossed.

“For example, if you travel from London to New York, you cross 5 time zones, so it takes your body about 5 days to adjust properly.”

dr Senn said that one way to combat the effects of jet lag is to resynchronize your circadian rhythm more quickly by getting exposure to bright sunlight in the morning and during the day.


If you struggle with sleeping in general, you may have a different sleep state.

dr Senn said around 30 percent of adults suffer from insomnia, which means people have trouble falling asleep.

She said this is usually divided into two types, onset insomnia is difficulty falling asleep and maintenance insomnia is difficulty staying asleep.

“Common triggers include emotional concerns and stress or anxiety.

“This emotional excitement leads to an overactive sympathetic nervous system, which controls the body’s fight-or-flight mechanism, releasing the stress hormone cortisol and making it extremely difficult for our bodies to rest and fall asleep.”

Treatments for insomnia include medication, psychotherapy, or behavioral therapy.

Medications such as sleeping pills should always be used in consultation with a doctor as people can become addicted and often do not see the results they are hoping for as the sleeping pills distort the natural sleep cycle.

Talking therapies like cognitive behavioral therapy focus on addressing the fears or issues that can cause insomnia and may be a more effective long-term solution for many, added Dr. Senn added.

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Sarah Y. Kim

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