What Causes Snoring?

HollowBrookSleep - Sleep Hygiene
Almost everyone snores occasionally. Snoring occurs when the air flows past your throat tissues making those tissues vibrate. Snoring can occur when you have allergies or sinus problems. While most episodes of snoring can be stopped by changing your sleep position or opening your nasal passages, chronic snoring is a more serious issue that should be addressed. You will sleep better and so will your partner.
Obstructive Sleep Apnea
If you routinely snore when you sleep, it often goes hand-in-hand with sleep disorders, such as obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). You may actually stop breathing for a second while you sleep, which causes excessive daytime sleepiness, headaches in the morning, high blood pressure and difficulty concentrating. Some people with OSA doze off during the day unexpectedly.
Reasons You May Snore
Many conditions can affect your airway. To stop snoring, you will need to get a medical evaluation to determine the cause. Some common reasons people snore include:
  • Nasal problems – you could have a deviated nasal septum or nasal congestion.
  • Sleep position – some people snore loudest when they are sleeping on their back because the airway is more narrow in that position.
  • Your anatomy – If your palate is low and thick, it can cause your airway to be narrower. The uvula, that triangle piece of tissue in the back of your mouth, can also obstruct your airway.
  • Being overweight – Obesity causes extra tissue in your mouth that can narrow your airway. Losing weight can help you stop snoring.
  • Alcohol consumption – alcohol will relax your muscles in the throat, causing your airway to become narrow. 
What Can I Do to Stop Snoring? 
The Mayo Clinic recommends making lifestyle changes, losing weight, sleeping on your side and/or avoiding alcohol before bed as snoring cures. WebMD recommends staying hydrated to prevent nasal passages from becoming dry and thick. You may also need to change your pillow.
If you are wondering what to do when snoring, you should see your dentist or doctor for a diagnosis and treatment options. A night-guard can help you keep an open airway when you’re asleep. You may need a jaw alignment. Oral appliance therapy is highly recommended by the American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine. These oral devices are quiet and portable. With over 100 different types, you have many choices to manage your snoring. Working with your Colorado Springs, CO dentist, you can find a solution for your sleep problems and snoring.
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