Though snoring is not identified as a big problem, in some cases, it indicates serious health issues. Hence, it is important to be watchful of your snoring and seek treatment of the snoring worsens.
Snoring can be occasions when the person snores only on a few nights. Occasional snoring can occur due to nasal congestion, tiredness, etc. Temporary snoring due to the nose block, allergic reaction, or fatigue can be treated with the right medication and rest.
Snoring is habitual when the person snores every night.
When the person sleeps, a part of the throat behind the tongue, known as the pharynx, relaxes and vibrates. Even the muscles around the pharynx relax. when the vibration or sound is soft, it leads to light snoring but if the vibration is loud, it can cause thunderous and harsh snoring. Now, when we breathe during sleeping, the throat passage becomes narrower and the snoring sound is created.
Snoring: Health Risks
As said earlier, if snoring is chronic, it can result in serious health complications. The health risks associated with snoring are:
• Lesser concentration and focus on things
• Lethargy and tiredness all-day
• Low energy levels in the body
• Frequent pain in the head and sometimes in other body parts too
• Mental problems and mental Illness
• Low libido
• Susceptible to cardiovascular and brain diseases because snorers often suffer from obstructive sleep apnea, that strains the heart and can cause heart attack and stroke.
• Habitual snorers may get obstructive sleep apnea.
There are a few facts, you must know about snoring. They are:
• A blocked airway causes snoring
• Genes play an important role in snoring
• Age and allergies also play an important role in snoring.
• Males snore more than a female
• Snoring is one of the most common problems worldwide.
• Lifestyle changes may treat snoring
• Snoring may indicate a serious medical condition.
Who are at risk of snoring?
The people with the conditions mentioned below are more prone to snoring as compared to other people.
• Age group of 45 years: 60% snorers are the people who are around 45 years of age
• Over Weight people: The people who are overweight tend to snore more than the people with controlled weight. This happens because of the fatty neck that blocks and narrows the airways.
• Sleeping on the back: The people who sleep on their back, snore more. If you sleep in a side position, it will help in reducing the snore.
• Smoking: The people who smoke are more susceptible to snoring. Smoking causes throat and mouth inflammation. This makes the airways tissues vibrate.
• Alcohol Consumption: Alcohol is a sedative that relaxes the throat muscles, causing snoring.
• Allergies: Allergies or inflammation increases snoring.
• Medical conditions like alleviated septum, enlarged tonsils, and large tongue also cause snoring.
Stages of Snoring:
The different stages of snoring are:
Stage 0: The condition in which there is heavy snoring.
Stage 1: The condition in which there is intermittent snoring while sleeping.
Stage 2: The condition in which daytime sleepiness is severe and snoring is intermittent.
Stage 3: The condition in which there can be cardiorespiratory complications.
Snoring and sleep apnea
The people who snore may have sleep apnea too. You must get in touch with your doctor if experience these symptoms:
• Excessive sleepiness during the day
• Headache, especially in the morning when you wake up
• Unreasonable weight gain
• Difficulty waking in the morning and not feeling fresh
• Frequent awaking in the night gasping for air
• Feeling of confusion
• Lack of concentration
• Loss of memory
• Obstructed breathing while sleeping
Try these anti-snore remedies:
Controlling weight can lessen the problem of snoring significantly. For doing an effective weight control, you must start working out and eat only healthy and diet food. Begin by checking your BMI or body mass index. This will indicate how much overweight you are. While practicing weight loss, ensure to check your weight regularly to maintain it.
Ensure you do not sleep on the back as it aggravates snoring. You must develop the habit to sleep sideways. Sleeping on the side keeps the airway clear and hence it prevents snoring.
Avoid Alcohol and smoking
Alcohol is a sedative that suppresses the nervous system. It relaxes the muscles and allows the tongue to roll back. It causes obstructed breathing and then snoring results. So, avoid drinking alcohol, especially before going to bed. Similarly, even smoking aggravates snoring by disturbing the lungs and mouth muscles.
Important medicines cannot be avoided but you can surely avoid antihistamines, tranquilizers, and sleeping pills.
Include healthy food in your diet. There are foods that can help reduce snoring in the long run. The foods such as fish especially tuna, soy milk, turmeric, onion, green tea, honey, etc. have anti-inflammatory properties that clear the airway and prevent snoring.
Treat nasal congestion
Cold and cough lead to nasal congestion, that blocks the airways. Avoid allergens that cause nasal irritation and congestion. Take medications to eliminate them.
Drink lots of water
Snoring can also be a result of dry mouth and dry throat. Drink at least 6-8 glasses of water per day.
Throat and Tongue Exercises
Try throat and tongue exercises to alleviate the snoring.
The doctor can suggest tests such as x-rays and CT scan to find the cause and solutions for snoring. It can deviate nasal septum, nasal congestion, or blocked sinuses. The doctor will also study your sleep patterns and suggest a suitable treatment.
If there are conditions like deviated nasal septum or enlarged tonsils, surgery is often advised. the surgeries like Tonsillectomy, Sinusitis, UPPP, MMA, etc. can provide positive results to the patient.
There are anti-snoring devices available in the market such as mouth pieces, chin straps, anti-snoring pillows, sprays and humidifiers, tongue restraining snoring devices, continuous positive airway pressure appliance, etc. These devices work efficiently to reduce or eliminate snoring.