Snoring is the vibration of respiratory structures and the resulting sound due to obstructed air movement during breathing while sleeping. In some cases the sound may be soft, but in other cases, it can be loud and unpleasant.
Snoring is known to cause sleep deprivation to snorers and those around them, as well as daytime drowsiness, irritability, lack of focus and decreased libido. It has also been suggested that it can cause significant psychological and social damage to sufferers.
What causes snoring?
Snoring is caused by the vibration of the soft tissue in your head and neck as you breathe in.
Almost all treatments for snoring revolve around clearing the blockage in the breathing passage. This is the reason snorers are advised to lose weight (to stop fat from pressing on the throat), stop smoking (smoking weakens and clogs the throat) and sleep on their side (to prevent the tongue from blocking the throat). A number of alternate treatment options are also available, ranging from over-the-counter aids such as nasal sprays, nose clips, lubricating sprays, and anti-snore devices and pillows.
Specially made dental appliances called mandibular advancement splints, which advance the lower jaw slightly and thereby pull the tongue forward, are the most common mode of treatment for snoring. Such appliances have been proven to be effective in reducing snoring and sleep apnoea in cases where the apnoea is mild to moderate. Mandibular advancement splints are well tolerated.
Surgery is also available as a method of correcting social snoring. Some procedures, such as uvulopalatopharyngoplasty, attempt to widen the airway by removing tissues in the back of the throat, including the uvula and pharynx. These surgeries are quite invasive, and there are risks of adverse side effects.
There are various natural methods alleged to alleviate snoring. These can be in the form of herbal pills, acupressure devices or specialized acupuncture.
There are occasions wherein snoring is the result of a wrong sleeping position. Sleeping with too many pillows can stretch and narrow the air passage. Use one pillow to avoid it. Also, lying on the back can cause snoring. So, a change in sleeping position can be a help.
If you are a snorer or suffer from sleep apnoea, come talk to us. Here at Smile 360 we offer a range of solutions to help you sleep better, and enjoy life more.