New York Magazine reviewed the possible health implications of snoring and spoke to sleep experts about the best anti-snoring pillows on the market.
“Snoring is basically related to a narrow upper airway, and gravity tends to make things worse,” says Kannan Ramar, a sleep physician and professor of medicine in the division of pulmonary and critical care medicine at the Mayo Clinic, and president-elect of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine. “When you fall asleep, the tongue relaxes a little bit and can fall back and close up the airway. The soft palate and the uvula at the back of the throat relaxes, and that tends to narrow the airway.” Add a new pillow, the theory goes, and you put yourself in a position that reduces the effect of gravity on the back of your neck. Here are some pillows — selected by sleep doctors and sleep product experts — to try out.
Sarah Riccio, a senior writer at sleep product review site Sleepopolis, likes the Xtreme Comforts wedge with its 30-degree angle and 7-inch height. It’s also made from memory foam, which is Winter’s material of choice: “Memory foam tends to support and hold people better,” he says. “It’s conforming around your neck and giving a little bit more of an even distribution of pressure, versus down, which tends to look fluffy, but collapses when you’re on top of it.”
As an alternative to a wedge, Riccio says to look for “pillows with an extra-lofty profile of 5-inches or more,” that will also keep the head and neck elevated. She especially likes the Layla Kapok pillow since it “features a super high profile of 7-inches and does a great job of maintaining its shape.”