Everyone has a dramatic snoring story to tell. Snoring is guilty for immeasurable hours of lost sleep, and a good majority of couples sleeping in separate rooms. Did you know the number one design feature on new house construction is separate master bedrooms? Snoring can be a warning sign for a major health problem called Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA). The dangers of OSA to your health are very scary.
Snoring is caused by a partially obstructed airway. When you sleep, your muscle tone is greatly reduced. The soft tissue and muscles in your mouth, tongue and throat relax. This causes the airway to become obstructed. The obstruction causes your soft palate and uvula to begin to vibrate when you inhale and exhale. These vibrations cause the sound called snoring.
How common is snoring?
According to several sleep studies, approximately 45% of the general population snores.
But is snoring dangerous?
The Journal of American Medical Association (JAMA) states snorers have three times as many motor vehicle accidents as non-snorers. This is due to drowsy driving. Snoring is more common in males and overweight persons. Snoring usually grows worse with age. Snoring sounds are caused when there is an impediment to the free flow of air through the back of the mouth and nose.
Only recently have the negative medical effects of snoring and Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) have been recognized. Various methods are used to eliminate snoring and OSA. They include behavior modification, oral appliance therapy, sleep positioning, Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP), and Apnea Surgery.