Posted on Friday, July 31st, 2020 at 9:16 pm
Snoring is extremely common in adults. In fact, about 90 million Americans suffer from snoring, either temporarily or semi-permanently. This could be because they have a cold or allergies, or it might be because of obesity or sleep apnea.
Some factors that frequently contribute to snoring are:
- Sleep deprivation – the more tired you are once you finally fall asleep, the more your throat muscles will relax, which can cause increased snoring.
- Sleeping position – snoring is less likely to occur when sleeping on your side, but more likely to occur if you sleep on your back.
- Nasal and sinus problems – abnormalities in your sinuses can contribute to snoring because your air passages may be more clogged than usual.
- Sinus and oral anatomy – a longer uvula, deviated septum, and narrow nasal passageways can all make snoring worse.
While snoring is a common occurrence, it could be harmful for some people. Snoring could lead to issues including:
- Dangerous drop in blood oxygen levels
- Cardiovascular issues, including heart disease or heart attacks
- Narrowing of the arteries in the neck due to fatty deposits, leading to strokes
- Daytime sleepiness due to lack of adequate rest
- Irritability, mood swings and other mental health issues.
Contact an OSA Expert at Silent Night Therapy
If you or your partner snore at night, this might be a sign of a more serious underlying health condition, such as sleep apnea or another sleep disorder. Oftentimes, snoring is caused by factors that are easy to fix, but if sleep apnea is the culprit, more rigorous treatment may be necessary. The experts at Silent Night Therapy are here to guide you through the process.
Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, our dedication to our clients remains strong. We have altered the nature of our services to better serve and protect you during these times by offering virtual consultations. You do not even need to leave the safety of your home to get tested for sleep apnea – we can mail an at-home kit right to your door. Call us at 631-983-2463 or fill out a contact form on our website today to learn more about our services.
Posted on Friday, November 15th, 2019 at 6:27 pm
Although snoring is widely accepted and is often made light of in our society, it can often point to more serious health concerns. Snoring can be an indicator of sleep apnea, which is a condition that is characterized by pauses in breathing during sleep. For some people, these pauses can last up to a minute — or more. This sleep condition is more prevalent in those who are overweight, and tends to worsen with age.
While some occasional, light snoring isn’t considered to be a significant issue, persistent, heavy snoring can impede sleep quality. In severe cases, it can be beneficial to seek medical advice to ensure a good night of restful sleep.
What Causes Snoring?
Snoring is mainly caused by a physical obstruction of airflow through the nose and mouth. There are several different ways that airflow can be obstructed, including:
- Blocked Nasal Passages: Snoring is common for those who are suffering from seasonal colds or sinus infections. Additionally, deviated septums and internal nasal growths may be the culprit.
- Weak Throat and Tongue Muscles: Your mouth and throat are filled with muscles that help you chew, swallow, and digest food. If these muscles are weakened, they can collapse and fall back into your airway. Weakened throat and tongue muscles can be caused by alcohol or medication. These muscles also naturally weaken with age.
- Bulky Throat Tissue: Those who are overweight, have large tonsils, or bulky nasal tissue, are more likely to snore while sleeping.
- Oversized Uvula and Soft Palate: Your uvula and palate are soft tissues that, when oversized, can obstruct your airway passages while you sleep. As air travels through, these soft tissues can vibrate and come into contact with one another — causing you to snore.
Health Concerns and Risks
Snoring can be an indicator of more severe health issues, such as sleep apnea. Sleep apnea can lead to several problems, such as:
- Prolonged interruptions in breathing
- Waking up frequently during the night
- Light sleep
- Heavier strain on the heart
- Higher blood pressure
- Enlargement of the heart
- Increased risk for heart attack
- Increased risk for stroke
- Increased risk for car accidents
- Impeded quality of life
When You Should Seek Help For Snoring
If you notice that heavy, persistent snoring is disrupting your quality of sleep, it may be beneficial to talk about treatment options with a trained sleep specialist like Dr. Brown and the team at Silent Night Therapy. Everyone deserves a good night’s sleep, and we’ll be here to find the solution that will help you get it. Schedule your complimentary consultation with us by calling (631) 983-2463 or by filling out a contact form today.
Posted on Monday, May 20th, 2019 at 9:32 pm
While normal breathing is done through the nose, some people naturally breathe through their mouth. The main reason for breathing through the mouth is nasal congestion, due to chronic sinusitis, inflammation, allergies, or a deviated septum. However, there is a significant population of people that breathe through the mouth due to their sleep apnea.
During a sleep apnea episode, a person suddenly stops breathing. When the oxygen level dips, a person starts breathing in a way that causes loud snoring. A person will suddenly gasp or gulp in air as quickly as possible. Because of this phenomenon, an individual may develop a habit of breathing with the mouth open to accommodate the need for more oxygen.
Studies have found that breathing through the mouth makes obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) worse. Many doctors will prescribe oral appliances since mouth breathing is so prevalent in sleep apnea patients.
If you are naturally a mouth breather, here are a few suggestions that will make a difference in your sleep. You must be able to breathe clearly through your nose, so finding out the cause of nasal congestion is helpful. Reduce potential allergens such as dander, dust, or dairy foods. Ensure that your bedding is clean, so change sheets and pillowcases regularly. Oral appliances, saline rinses, and other measures are also helpful. Regular exercise is essential to reduce obstructive sleep apnea. It is crucial that patients to stop breathing through their mouth, and learn to breathe through the nose since nasal breathing decreases the severity of OSA.
Stopping oral breathing is a crucial step to take for people who are dealing with sleep apnea. If you have more questions about OSA and mouth breathing, consult with the sleep experts at Silent Night Therapy. We can be reached at (631) 983-2463, or reach out to us online for help.
Posted on Tuesday, October 2nd, 2018 at 7:51 pm
Snoring may be the result of how a person’s nose or jaw is shaped, or it may be caused by other factors that result in the narrowing of a person’s airway. When this occurs, relaxed tissues in a person’s throat can vibrate, which is more commonly referred to as snoring.
While many people may be completely unaware of their snoring problems, the issues are far less likely to be overlooked by those people’s spouses or significant others they share beds with. In such cases, snoring can interfere with the other person’s ability to get a peaceful night’s rest.
As the Mayo Clinic notes, snoring is often associated with the sleep disorder obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), but not all snorers necessarily have OSA. In many cases, snoring issues may be resolved through simple lifestyle changes or possibly even medical devices or surgery.
Causes of Snoring
Snoring can be the result of multiple factors. While the anatomy of a person’s mouth and sinuses will undoubtedly be a factor, some of the other contributing factors to snoring include, but are not limited to:
- Alcohol Consumption — Alcohol can relax your throat muscles and decrease defenses against airway obstruction.
- Sleep Position — People who sleep on their back often snore the loudest and most frequently.
- Sleep Deprivation — A lack of sleep can increase throat relaxation and make a person more likely to snore.
- Nasal Problems — Any number of nasal issues can impact a person’s airways and cause or contribute to snoring.
Certain people can be more predisposed to snoring. Men are much more likely to suffer from sleep apnea than women, and people who are overweight can also be more likely to snore.
Ways to Stop Snoring
People have several different options they can try to stop snoring problems. Some of the most common methods include:
- Changing Sleeping Position — Again, many snorers sleep on their back, and switching to sleeping on their side can solve some snoring problems. A body pillow can be helpful for people who have difficulty adjusting to sleeping on their side.
- Weight Loss — Snoring often affects people who are overweight, and losing weight may be the solution for individuals who only began snoring after gaining additional weight.
- Get More Sleep — Many people who develop snoring habits also have poor sleeping habits. A lack of adequate sleep can contribute to snoring problems.
- Adjust Your Setting — In some cases, snoring issues may be resolved through a simple change of the pillow a person has been sleeping on. In other cases, other contributing factors within a bedroom such as dust mites from ceiling fans and window shades or pet dander could cause snoring.
- Stay Hydrated — Make sure to drink plenty of water (not alcohol though) so your nose and palate do not suffer from dehydration issues that cause snoring.
When a person tries multiple methods to reduce or eliminate snoring unsuccessfully, they should consult with their doctors about possible OSA or related issues.
Are you or your loved one dealing with a snoring issue? Unfortunately, snoring may not always be resolved with a single quick fix, and some people require individualized solutions. Contact Dr. Brown and the OSA team today by calling (631) 983-2463 or contact us online to let us see how we can help.