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Thread: Why can't I hear myself snoring?

  1. #1
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    Why can't I hear myself snoring?

    As off-topic as you can get really, but a mystery wanting a scientific answer. "Because you are asleep, you idiot" is a predictable response, but for me it's not as simple as that. With a changing sleep pattern, recently I am often in bed in the middle of the night, at peace with the world, but fully conscious of who I am and where I am. I can hear night-time noises, wife coming to bed much later than me, the cockerel doing its thing somewhere, dog barking far away, noisy fridge switching itself on, and so on. In this tranquil mood, I'm suddenly interrupted by the wife shouting for crying out loud, stop snoring or words to that effect, to which I instantly reply but I'm not snoring, which is a pretty dumb response really.

    How can I be conscious and hear all kinds of quiet background noises, but not hear myself snoring like a train?

  2. #2
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    I think the answer (from having the same experience) is that you think you are awake all the time, but in reality you are falling asleep and waking up and then falling asleep again. So you remember the night a a long stream, but in reality it's interrupted by sleep. That's my hypothesis, anyway. I sometimes complain that I didn't sleep at all some night, but my wife tells me I was snoring.
    As above, so below

  3. #3
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    I've had that happen a couple of times myself, Jens.

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    I agree with Jens, though in fact I sometimes do wake myself up snoring.

    I suspect the reason one doesn't normally wake onesself up snoring is similar to the reason why one cannot normally tickle onesself.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jens View Post
    I think the answer (from having the same experience) is that you think you are awake all the time, but in reality you are falling asleep and waking up and then falling asleep again. So you remember the night a a long stream, but in reality it's interrupted by sleep.
    This makes much sense, but I don't see why if I'm drifting into sleep and out of it, why my snoring does not wake me up. Surely I would be aware that this noise was waking me? I am very sensitive to noise of all kind (which incidentally can make life a misery sometimes, and my daughter has informed me very late in life that this is a very clear symptom of Asperger's syndrome. Kids.).

  6. #6
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    I have heard myself snore, while on the edge of sleep. Not often though. What I do remember about it was being in a confused state. Somewhat like taking a nap in the afternoon, and waking up panicking because you think you're late for work, and then suddenly understanding the situation. "What is that noise I'm hearing? What a strange raspy sound.. Why is my mouth so dry?.. Oh!".
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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Perikles View Post
    This makes much sense, but I don't see why if I'm drifting into sleep and out of it, why my snoring does not wake me up. Surely I would be aware that this noise was waking me? I am very sensitive to noise of all kind (which incidentally can make life a misery sometimes, and my daughter has informed me very late in life that this is a very clear symptom of Asperger's syndrome. Kids.).
    Noise sensitivity, particular when pulling you out of sleep, is a defense mechanism. But you're body isn't going to jolt you awake for a sound that it knows it's making itself.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Beardsley View Post
    I suspect the reason one doesn't normally wake onesself up snoring is similar to the reason why one cannot normally tickle onesself.
    But I can tickle myself! In particular, I can tickle the roof of my mouth with my tongue. It's pretty weird.

    I do agree with the "dropping off and waking up" explanation, though. One reason that might not produce awareness of snoring is that you may only snore in one mode of sleep, but that mode (and the snoring) may end before you become wakeful.

    Also, when you're jolted awake by the cries of "stop snoring!" you may awaken so suddenly that the snoring stops before you become aware of it. After all, the snoring itself is intermittent since you have to exhale sometime.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Donnie B. View Post
    But I can tickle myself! In particular, I can tickle the roof of my mouth with my tongue. It's pretty weird.
    I have just discovered that I can too!

    Just think, if I wasn't a BAUTer, I might never have known!

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    I was very tired a few days ago and my limbs all fell asleep before I actually lost consciousness. It was very odd. I was lying there with a waking head and a sleeping body.

  11. #11
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    I've heard myself snoring--it's only momentary--when I wake up, as I did sitting in a class this morning when the teacher tapped the chalkboard hard (probably in response to my snoring). Yep--the Ph. D. in math still takes math clases.

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    Donnie B has my answer: "STOP SNORING!", accompanied by a mild (rib bruise, no cracks) fist.

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    Quote Originally Posted by KaiYeves View Post
    I was very tired a few days ago and my limbs all fell asleep before I actually lost consciousness. It was very odd. I was lying there with a waking head and a sleeping body.
    It's a very normal thing. It's called sleep paralysis, and happens for very good reasons. But I agree, it's an odd (and to many people, frightening) experience.
    As above, so below

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    Quote Originally Posted by KaiYeves View Post
    I was very tired a few days ago and my limbs all fell asleep before I actually lost consciousness. It was very odd. I was lying there with a waking head and a sleeping body.
    That's sleeping in installments, Kai....
    I do, or rather my body does, that a lot.

    That's fine as long as my head is awake. But trouble when my body or parts of it are awake and my head isn't.
    I bump into stuff and people.

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    Quote Originally Posted by KaiYeves View Post
    I was very tired a few days ago and my limbs all fell asleep before I actually lost consciousness. It was very odd. I was lying there with a waking head and a sleeping body.
    The first time that ever happened to me was because I was on tablets for hay fever. I was rather pleased by the weirdness of it, but it didn't happen with the second tablet.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mike alexander View Post
    Donnie B has my answer: "STOP SNORING!", accompanied by a mild (rib bruise, no cracks) fist.


    Well, I would say that seeing as people generaly do not snore intentionaly, it is rather wrong to hit them...

  17. #17
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    Isn't that like saying it's wrong to have a red stoplight slow down your progress when you can't help it traffic is coming the other way?

    I do recall in childhood, I shared a bed once, and the other kid said--"if I start snoring, just punch me, it always works". So I did. (not hard of course!)

  18. #18
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    It wasn't exactly scary, it just felt sort of odd to be able to absolutely visualize the steps needed to pull the blanket back over my right foot in great detail, but actually moving my hands took great effort.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Beardsley View Post
    The first time that ever happened to me was because I was on tablets for hay fever. I was rather pleased by the weirdness of it, but it didn't happen with the second tablet.
    Antihistamines have a similar effect on me. The OTC sleeping pills I take are diphenhydramine, the active ingredient in Benadryl (and they have a "may cause drowsiness" warning on the label, which I find strange ). I'll often wake up in the morning and be aware of my surroundings but not feel my limbs for a few minutes.

  20. #20
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    Try 600 ug of melatonin.

    Works wonders.

  21. #21
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    All standard disclaimers about taking medical advice from strangers who don't know you, don't know your medical history, don't know if you're taking anything that might cause negative interactions and don't have any medical degrees apply.
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