Exactly what is snoring? Well, it is a sound that is made by a person (and sometimes animals) when their airflow is blocked while they are asleep. The tissues at the top of the airway strike against each other vibrate producing the sound. Snoring occurs when a person is sleeping because of the position and relaxed state of the body. A few common causes of snoring are age, weight, enlarged adenoids, and sinus problems.
If your snoring is severe enough to wake a you from sleep, it just may affect your ability to function during the daytime. Snoring is also a sign of sleep apnea, a serious sleep disorder that causes people to stop breathing for brief periods of time while sleeping, usually more than 10 seconds. The lack of oxygen stops blood flow to the brain and heart, and it can lead to mood disorders, depression and left sided heart failure if untreated.
A visit to your otolaryngologist (ENT) can help in determining the cause of your snoring. The doctor will be able to rule out any blockages caused by enlarged tonsils or other structures. If these structures are enlarged, they may have to be surgically removed. If the structures appear to be normal in size and are not suspected to be the cause of your snoring, you may need to lose weight. A sleep study (polysomnogram) is used to diagnose sleep apnea.
Sometimes if you roll over the snoring will stop. This is because your airway is in a position that does not allow optimal air flow. When you roll over the airway repositions and is more conductive to air flow. While this is a relief at the time it is not a permanent solution. Rolling over to stop snoring does not need to be substituted for medical care.
Sleep apnea is common but it is also involves serious dangers. It is something that needs to be taken care of if you are told you suffer from it. The sizes of some enlarged tonsils and adenoids, can be reduced with steroid medications or antibiotics if there is an active infection. Unfortunately, this doesn’t always work, and sometimes the side effects outweigh the benefits of these medications. The only guaranteed way to completely clear enlarged structures is with surgery. CPAP machines are often used to treat sleep apnea. A CPAP – Continuous Positive Air Pressure – is a fitted mask that delivers a constant flow of pressurized air that helps to maintain an open airway.For people who don’t have enlarged structures or sleep apnea losing weight is the best way to stop snoring. Do not take sedatives or consume alcohol before bed.
If you read the reports on this website, you will understand that snoring can be a problem in children as well as adults. The main cause for snoring in children is enlarged tonsils and adenoids. If your child snores, it would be wise to take them to an ENT specialist to rule out these problems. Untreated sleep apnea in children can cause mood disturbances, depression, learning deficits, ADHD, bedwetting and developmental delays.
If your doctor tells you you need and type of treatment requiring surgery to correct your snoring it will be a wise choice for you to chose Outpatient Services East. You will receive the best of care for the entire staff there. Check them out. You will not be disappointed.