Do you find yourself being woken up from loud noises coming from your own body every night? Or does your partner snore so loud that sleeping peacefully throughout the night is a lost cause? Well, as annoying as it can be, snoring is very common among many individuals. Although we all know snoring is a loud disturbance that can take place when someone falls asleep, many people do not know anything more. By reading on, you will learn exactly what snoring is, the causes of it, what factors impact it, and what can be done to help or prevent snoring.
Snoring can be summarized as a common condition where noise is created by the vibrations at the back of one’s throat while they are asleep. This happens when the course of air through the mouth or nose is blocked. It can be blocked through the nasal airways, from having poor muscle tone in the throat and tongue, or from having hefty throat tissue. Once you are sleeping for a while, the muscles in your tongue, throat, and roof of your mouth become relaxed. These muscles eventually become relaxed enough and tend to vibrate. This is the vibration responsible for the obstruction of your airways.
Now that you know what causes you to actually snore, let’s look at the factors that contribute to an individual snoring while they sleep. Depending on the person, there are several factors that could be put to blame.
Here are some that affect different individuals who snore
- Nasal Problems
- Alcohol or Smoking
- Sleep Apnea
- Weight Gain
- Mouth Anatomy
Nasal problems such as having allergies or illness can make someone snore. The airflow being blocked in someone’s nose causes them to breath out of their mouth while they are sleeping. Also, alcohol is said to have a strong influence on snoring. The consumption of alcohol leads to the tissues in one’s throat loosening. Because of these tissues being affected, the vibrations taken place when someone breaths will increase. If you believe this is the cause of your snoring, then you should try not drinking any alcohol one hour before you go to sleep. Obesity or gaining weight might be the problem for your snoring as well. The width of your airway in your throat tends to be reduced because of fat cells. Lastly, smoking is a large factor as well. Along with its other harmful effects, smoking causes the back of the throat to become inflamed. Once again, this tends to block the air flow.
Besides the loud annoyance snoring creates, there are other risks involved which many individuals are unaware of. When you snore or have a partner who snores, you may find it hard to get a good nights rest. Losing sleep is a definite side effect of snoring. Although it does not seem so serious, not getting adequate sleep can take a toll on someone’s health. Physically and mentally your body needs sleep, and if you do not get enough, your body will get worn out and you will weaken your immune system. Other effects snoring has on your health are headaches and stress. Both of these can also increase when not getting enough sleep.
The most serious health problem with snoring is sleep apnea. Sleep apnea is an illness that many heavy snorers have and fail to recognize. This occurs when throat tissues block your airways and make it hard for you to breath. Individuals with sleep apnea tend to snore extremely loudly, with silent intervals around ten seconds. When severe enough, they will find themselves waking up in the middle of the night gasping for air. This happens when the body realizes it has a lack of oxygen. Once you wake up, your throat opens and normal breathing resumes. Individuals with sleep apnea find this routine happening many times throughout the night. Because of this perpetual cycle, getting enough sleep each night is almost impossible. Sleep apnea can also lead to high blood pressure. The most serious consequence of this illness is the enlargement of the heart leading to an increased risk of having a stroke or heart attack. If you believe you may suffer from sleep apnea, you should see a doctor immediately.
If you, your partner, or even your child has a snoring problem, it is not a bad idea to see a physician. There are numerous treatment options that can help make your nights a dreamland!