You may think that snoring is just an embarrassing problem but sometimes it can be the sign of a more serious condition
Not only can you experience anxiety and concern, but also you or your partners’ sleep may be severely disrupted.
Airway and breathing disorders occur when your airway is obstructed in someway due to a deviated septum (your nose is bent), thin nasal passages, mouth breathing, misaligned bites, chronic allergies, slender jaws or a narrow throat or any combination of these.
Anything that limits or restricts the flow of air is an airway disorder.
What causes snoring?
Snoring is caused by the fluttering of the soft tissues at the back of your throat. As you sleep, your muscles relax and structures in the throat partially block your airway, causing the tissues of the soft palate and the tonsils to flap with each breath you take.
Snoring is most likely to occur if you are overweight or have excess soft tissue structure at the rear of your throat.
How can All About Teeth reduce snoring?
One option to help reduce snoring is a simple device worn during sleep. A night guard can be custom-made, which assists in repositioning the lower jaw, opening the airway to avoid the fluttering sounds produced as you breathe.
These appliances are useful in correcting mild to moderate cases of obstructive sleep apnoea.
What is sleep apnoea?
Sleep apnoea is classified as a serious condition where your breathing literally stops due to your airway being completely blocked. Its quite common among adults, but is rare among children.
When you experience each apnoea episode, your breathing will stop and your brain will tell your body to wake up to open the air passage. This may happen numerous times during the night and you won’t necessarily wake up enough to realise what’s happened.
Due to this disruption in your sleep rhythm you will suffer each day from a severe lack of sleep. Often this condition can go unnoticed for many years and you may have accepted the exhaustion not knowing there could be a possible concern.
What are the symptoms of sleep apnoea?
Some symptoms can include:
- Frequent waking episodes at night
- Excessive daytime sleepiness
- Loud snoring
- Aggressive sleep behaviour – i.e. tossing and turning
- Disrupted breathing, gagging, gasping or choking for air during sleep
Sleep apnoea patients can suffer from many health conditions such as high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, memory problems, weight gain, impotency and headaches.
This is a serious and life threatening condition and if necessary we can refer you to a sleep specialist for further investigation.
How are snoring and sleep apnoea related?
Not all patients who snore will develop sleep apnoea. Most people with sleep apnoea however do snore. Snoring is a common symptom of sleep apnoea, but sleep apnoea snoring is different from regular snoring.
When a patient regularly snores it partially blocks your airway but doesn’t cause any significant breathing problems. Sleep apnoea snoring is the result of a partial or full obstruction of the airway and severely restrict or stop breathing which starving your body of oxygen.
Sleep apnoea snoring is related to other serious health conditions, including type-two diabetes, hypertension and obesity.
If you are suffering any of the above symptoms or know someone who is, schedule a consultation with our experienced dentists today to see how we can help you.