People who snore are often the brunt of jokes, but it’s no laughing matter. Chronic snoring is a real problem that can cause relationship tension, drowsiness and fatigue, and lead to lapses in memory and concentration. Often, it’s an indication of a serious health disorder such as sleep apnea.
If you are a snorer, you’re not alone. Forty-five percent of adults occasionally snore, while 25% are considered habitual snorers. Snoring can affect people of all ages regardless of sex, though it is more frequent in men and those who are overweight.
Snoring occurs when tissues in the throat vibrate as air is breathed. During sleep, these tissues may become more relaxed, causing air passages to become obstructed. Causes of snoring include everything from nasal anatomy (deviated septum or polyps) to mouth and throat anatomy (enlarged tonsils, adenoids, soft palate or uvula) to alcohol and excess weight.
If you snore occasionally, try the following behavior changes to help treat the problem:
- Improve your eating habits and increase exercise to lose weight
- Avoid alcohol, caffeine, sleeping pills and eating prior to bedtime
- Go to bed at the same time every night
- Avoid sleeping on your back
- Keep bedroom air moist
- Elevate your head with pillows
A potentially more serious underlying concern of snoring—sleep apnea. Sleep apnea occurs when throat tissue obstructs the airway. Oxygen levels drop, signaling the snorer to wake up, and the airway is forced open with a loud snort or gasp. Often occurring hundreds of times a night, this not only affects sleep, but can also lead to heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure and diabetes.
There are a number of surgical procedures that may help with snoring. Some are minimally invasive and can be performed in our office, while others require more traditional surgeries. Set up a consult with Dr. Rosner to discuss treatment options; you will be rewarded with a good night’s sleep. (248) 844-2936