Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Snoring Has Finally Met Its Match: Thyme

mmarcotte51 / Foter.com / CC BY
If you could choose between sleeping peacefully through the night or waking up every few hours and not being able to fall back asleep, which would you choose? It's pretty safe to say that most, if not all, of us treasure our sleep enough that we would do anything to get a good night's rest. Anything!

According to a study at the University of North Carolina, 30 percent of women and 40 percent of men snore, although those numbers depend on the person surveyed actually being aware that they snore. This study is to test how making lesions on the soft palate by heating a needle electrode with radio frequency energy can tighten up the soft palate to potentially eliminate snoring. I'm telling you this to illustrate how we as a society are going to great lengths to find ways to get rid of snoring—it disrupts our sleep and the sleep of the people around us.

This Friday Will and I are going on three months being married! We are so in love (I just had to throw that in there) and have so much fun together. Who knew it'd be worth the wait to find a love that would happen so naturally and easily (compared to ALL the other attempts of trying to force love and "make it work") and find the person who would make us truly the happiest? I am so grateful for this man.

Well when we were dating I found out that Will snored. And not just snored but raised the roof with his snores and woke neighboring cities. His friends and family know this from personal experience, and Will was well aware of it too. So I started praying really hard that he'd stop snoring by the time we got married. Didn't work. I told Will to do positive affirmations, which he kindly told me he'd do, but to be honest I'll have to ask him if he really did them. We looked up the emotions on snoring, and I researched the meridians associated with snoring in Chinese medicine. After three months of ear plugs and experimenting and lots of nights lying awake, what would you say if I told you we have found something that works??

Jack Fussell / Foter.com / CC BY-NC-ND
Thyme. Yes, thyme was our unsuspecting answer! You know, the plant you cook with? The herb? We bought the essential oil Thyme almost a month ago, not even realizing it is known to help with snoring. About three weeks ago we read how you can help snoring if you rub it on the bottoms of your feet before going to bed at night, specifically at the base of the big toe, and Will started doing it. After two days there was no change, and he stopped putting it on. Then maybe a week later Will decided to give it another try and started putting it on religiously—he keeps the bottle of thyme on his nightstand, and it's now become part of his bedtime routine. (Really I am just trying to give him things to do before bed since my bedtime routine is like an hour and his is 2 minutes. We regularly discuss this imbalance and the unfairness of life.)

After about a week I still didn't notice much of a change in his snoring, BUT the second week I noticed that if he was snoring, all I had to do to get him to stop was gently touch his arm, not even waking him up. This was a huge breakthrough! Before Will started using Thyme if I nudged him he'd stop snoring for 5 seconds, roll over, and start snoring again. On average this second week I would touch his arm to stop his snoring about three times a night. 

Now into the third week, I would classify Will as a non-snorer! I know, crazy, huh? If you don't believe me, you are welcome to sleep on the floor beside our bed tonight. This is the truth. The snoring has changed to a very deep breathing that is free of any rattle and does not wake either of us up. Sometimes he will do a few seconds of sounds that would typically turn into a snore, but then they stop. It is magical, really—heavenly! And, to be honest, surprising. I knew essential oils worked great for preventing colds and for helping with my arthritis, but now I know even more so not to limit their possibilities. Who knew thyme was where it was at?

UPDATE: Click here to read the part II to this post.


Rebecca said...

So awesome! I just posted this on my I Heart Herbs Facebook page because I know a good use for herbs when I see one! Fantastic! Thanks, Katie!

Nettie Martin said...

Oh man...this is amazing. Sleeping with a snorer was one of my biggest fears of getting married (how's that for being dramatic?). Luckily JP doesn't snore...but I will have to pass this along to other that I know do. Yay for restful sleep! Hope all is well with you guys!

Shella's Ramblings said...

Glad you had a little heads up about the Smith snore. Glad it's getting better Katie! Happy almost three month anniversary!

Jan Fisher Clark said...

Katie! I just found your blog and I LOVE it. You are so talented at writing. I want you to give me "Katie" lessons so I can be more like you! YOu are such a great person!

P.S. This picture that you used of the couple really looks like you and Will- it isn't, is it??

Katie Newbold Smith said...

@Rebecca, we need to talk herbs soon. Among other things. Many other things.:)

@Nettie, dramatic or not it's definitely something worth fearing.:) I'm still in a state of shock or am half expecting the snores to come back tonight with vengeance.

@Michelle, do tell! Maybe this should soon be a new family secret recipe for snoring. And you have a blog!—I love it.

@Jan,I'm so happy you commented! I've been thinking about you and meaning to email you to start being pen pals.:) How's Texas??

Katie Newbold Smith said...

Oh, and Jan, you are so right about the picture looking just like me and Will! Hilarious, huh? I swear that it IS Will. It was meant to be our snore post picture.

Sam Rushforth Taggart said...

That is great news Kates! I will have to try that on myself. BTW that picture totally looks like Will :)

Vee said...

I was definitely looking closely at the picture. I was wondering who Will was in bed with! Dan started snoring a few years ago. Then it turned into apnea. I would wake up because supconciously I thought he was going to stop breathing and die. I think the snoring started when he gained weight and had to sleep on his back because of back problems. Since he doesn't snore when he's on his side, I made him a t-shirt with a pocket on the back, right smack between his shoulder blades, that we put a dryer ball or tennis ball in. It keeps him from sleeping on his back since it's uncomfortable. Now he's trained to sleep on his side again. I'm so glad you found something that works for Will, since you need your sleep!

Laura Linnell said...

So I read this months ago when you first posted it but didn't think much of it... until I married a man who could probably compete in the snoring olympics and take the gold. Being lazy, I went from memory about which essential oil you used. (Apparently, I need an oil for memory enhancement:) We have been using eucalyptus oil and it has worked like a charm!! After reading this again, I am anxious to try thyme and see how it compares. Thanks for sharing your tricks!