Alternative medicine can be pretty weird. So much of it is rooted in cultural tradition and is as ceremonial as it is medicinal, such as traditional Chinese medicine. Some remedies have their roots in scientific fact; for instance, acupuncture is arguably the inspiration for dry needling, a legitimate physical therapy practice.
One of the stranger alternative medicines out there is homeopathy. In some drug stores, you can find homeopathic remedies for all kinds of things, but one of the most popular is for snoring. If you have chronic snoring problems, these treatments may be a waste of your time and money.
What is Homeopathy?
Homeopathy dates back to the late 1700s. Its principle is based on the idea that “like cures like,” or that substances that cause a disease can also cure it in small quantities. Most homeopathic remedies use significant dilutions of the target substance in some sort of solvent, typically water or alcohol.
These dilutions are very, very strong, to the point where sometimes there is not a single molecule left of the substance being diluted.
Homeopathy has varying degrees of acceptance throughout the world; it holds some popularity in Europe and developing countries, but has been a target of scientific officials and governments who want to keep medical funding from going to it. It is widely regarded as pseudoscience.
Why Doesn’t It Work?
The main reason homeopathy is ineffective is because of the dilutions used. For instance, popular homeopathic remedy SnoreStop uses dilutions on the order of 1 part per million. Homeopaths often use the debunked theory of “water memory” to justify this, claiming that water’s properties are permanently altered by dilution even if the substance is no longer in the solution.
In the interest of fairness, some natural remedies may help with some types of snoring. For instance, honey has antibacterial and lubricating properties, and spicy foods such as garlic or wasabi can clear nasal passages. But snoring is a complex issue that rarely has one clear-cut cause, and these are usually consumed in much higher quantities than a homeopathic dilution.
Chronic snoring can be a symptom of sleep apnea, a disorder that temporarily interrupts breathing while you sleep. An oral appliance can help! Klooster Family Dentistry is proud to offer OSAs to our patients. Contact us today and let’s help you get the sleep you deserve!