Nearly one in five individuals suffer from snoring, a condition that, if left untreated, can lead to serious health complications. To make sure you take the best course of action with your healthcare provider’s help and advice, let us explore what causes snoring and how it can be effectively managed.
What is snoring?
More than just a potential source of disturbance to others, snoring is actually caused by reduced airflow in the airways during sleep. Seemingly innocent, it can have drastic consequences if left untreated–draining your overall health and well-being. Don’t let snoring go unchecked.
Snoring happens when a blockage in the airway causes inhaled air to struggle through, resulting in the soft tissue of your throat vibrating. Unfortunately, snoring gets louder as your airways become narrower and even more restricted.
If you’re among those who snore, it’s statistically more likely that you’ll experience fatigue during the day and suffer from morning headaches; what’s more, your ability to focus may be impaired, while unexpected weight gain is also a possibility.
Snoring can have a much deeper impact than just disrupting your partner’s peaceful sleep. It can lead to serious and persistent side effects that affect your daily living, such as grinding teeth while asleep or daytime fatigue. The implications of snoring are far greater than what meets the eye.
Why is it so important to treat snoring?
High-quality sleep is the foundation of a healthy body and mind, and snoring impedes your opportunity to get that restful shut-eye. Without sufficient or quality rest, it can be hard to make it throughout the day in tip-top shape. To prevent such interruptions from ruining your days with impaired performance levels, consider addressing any snoring issues you may have with appropriate measures.
What are the causes of snoring?
From momentary episodes to more chronic conditions, snoring can stem from a variety of sources.
- Nasal congestion is caused by a cold, allergies or other environmental irritants.
- Sleeping on your back
- Excessive consumption of alcohol and drug use
- Obstructive sleep apnea
- High blood pressure
- Hormonal changes
Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) is a serious sleep disorder that can lead to stroke, heart attack and elevated blood pressure. Neglecting snoring issues increases the odds of developing OSA over time.
Pregnancy hormones often create congestion in expecting mothers, making snoring a common occurrence. As the baby grows bigger and puts more pressure on the diaphragm, pregnant women may experience difficulty breathing. Menopausal women are also at risk of loud snoring due to their lower levels of oestrogen, leading to softer muscles.
Risk factors that may contribute to your snoring
The typical snorer is aged 35-60 years, and those with heavier body frames are at greater risk of developing the condition. Additionally, any excess weight around the neck area may also contribute to narrowing your airways and increasing pressure on them. Other contributing factors include:
As the years pass, snoring occurs more often because the muscle toning decreases, causing the airway to constrict itself.
When you drink alcohol, it can relax the tissues in your airway and amplify snoring. Furthermore, high levels of acidity from alcohol consumption will wreak havoc on both your liver and stomach: Acid reflux is a common sleeping consequence for those who partake in excessive drinking. Therefore, consuming too much liquor isn’t just bad for sleep quality – it can be detrimental to overall health as well.
Sleep medicine and sedatives
Certain drugs, including sedatives, sleep medication, epilepsy medication and oral steroids, can all increase the likelihood of heavy snoring.
Those who inhale through their mouths are more likely to experience snoring, as the walls at the back of their throat vibrate far easier than those situated in the rear of their nose.
Not only is smoking highly detrimental to your overall health and well-being, but it can also lead to louder snoring since the smoke blocks air from entering and exiting your lungs. If you’ve been an avid smoker for years, chances are that multiple organs have already started experiencing irreversible damage due to this harmful habit.
People who suffer from bruxism (teeth grinding)
Snoring and teeth grinding often go hand-in-hand, a frequent occurrence that afflicts many people.
How to treat snoring effectively?
You may be surprised to learn that your dentist is your number one confidant in snoring treatment.
The Melbourne Dental Sleep Clinic is proud to employ an incredibly successful treatment for snoring, the Mandibular Advancement Splint (MAS). This mouthguard-like device provides you with dual benefits – protecting your teeth from grinding at night as well as treating your snoring. With this highly effective solution, no longer will restful nights be a distant dream!
The MAS is an effective solution to snoring as it repositions your lower jaw forward, thus widening the airway and preventing soft tissue in the back of your throat from vibrating.
Managing lifestyle factors
By utilising a mandibular advancement splint, you can not only experience a restful night’s sleep but also enhance your sleeping partner’s relationship with you. Additionally, there are many other ways to protect and fortify the efficiency of this dental device while promoting your overall health.
Consider losing weight
Dropping extra pounds offers a variety of health benefits and will even help stop snoring. In addition to adopting a healthier diet, exercising on a regular basis can also maximise your sleep quality.
Adjust your sleep position
For optimal comfort and to reduce snoring, opt for sleeping on your side. Sleeping exclusively in a supine position can increase the likelihood of you snoring throughout the night.
Before you hit the hay each night, ensure that your airway is free from any potentially obstructive substances by clearing out your nose. This might mean avoiding alcohol, dairy or tobacco products before bedtime; additionally, a nasal spray could provide extra relief and keep you away from disrupted sleep
If the source of someone’s snoring remains a mystery, we can evaluate both their sleep and snoring to construct an individualised treatment plan. There is no need to suffer from sleep deprivation anymore. Contact Melbourne Dental Sleep Clinic immediately for your appointment and enjoy a safe and peaceful sleeping experience.
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