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Snoring: a deadly threat to sleep, health and life itself

Snoring: caused by blocked airways

Snoring: caused by blocked airways

Snoring can be deadly

Not only can snoring dampen the romance at home, it can also lead to broken relationships, divorce and even murder. Not a bad incentive to explore some solutions before it’s too late, especially if you’re in denial about your own snoring.

The implications of snoring are wide and varied. The simple matter of the noise alone can be unpleasant.  The resulting sleep deprivation has consequences to healthy living for both the snorer and their partner.

The effects of a lack of regular, uninterrupted sleep can accumulate over time to affect performance at work, the ability to drive safely, or function normally.

It’s probably fair to say that snoring is such a common condition that its’ health effects are often overlooked.  There is, however, a growing movement of health professionals actively raising awareness alongside the recent wave of mainstream media coverage that is shining a light on the subject.

Snoring is caused by a partial blockage of the airway, which almost always occurs due to the tongue relaxing and closing against the soft palate.  The body overcomes this by forcing air past the blockage.  The resulting vibrations of the tongue against the soft palate create the snoring noise.

Snoring Solutions Past and Present

Historically speaking, there have been some novel and downright bizarre approaches to dealing with snoring:


Not recommended! An extreme solution, but not unheard of. A college student in China admitted to stabbing his roommate to death over snoring, as reported here at the Huffington Post:

College Student Says He Killed Roommate Over Snoring

Elastic Masks, Inner Tubes and Rubber Balls

In 1961 a report in the October 21st edition of The Gadsden Times covered a variety of market-place solutions, including elastic masks, rubber strips made from inner tubes and a rubber ball with a whistle inside it. An explanation for the highly intriguing rubber ball and whistle solution can be found in the Gadsden Times report here:

Divorces, Even Murder Are Blamed on Snoring

Whilst these interventions are interesting and entertaining, we wouldn’t suggest you resort to any of these.


So what else can be done to help snorers?

Somnowell Sleeping Appliances

At Balsall Common Dental Practice we can help snorers with an appliance called Somnowell – a market-leading solution that postures the lower jaw forwards to keep the airway open.

The same Somnowell appliance also works with Obstructive Sleep Apnoea.

What is Obstructive Sleep Apnoea?

Obstructive sleep apnoea is breath-holding during sleep. With this condition the airway blockage is so severe that it totally prevents breathing until the sufferer wakes and snorts in some air before falling back to sleep.

In the most severe cases the sufferer can wake every 30 seconds or so. In many cases the sufferer does not wake long enough to be aware of waking, but it plays havoc with their quality of sleep. Common symptoms are exhaustion on waking, feelings of tiredness all day. On top of which comes an increased risk of illnesses such as heart disease and stroke.

With mild sleep apnoea, where there are no symptoms of involuntary daytime sleep (such as falling asleep whilst driving or in meetings), we can help without a formal diagnosis from a chest physician.

Warning Signs

Warning signs of severe sleep apnoea are involuntary sleeping during the day such as whilst driving or in meetings. In such cases we can still help but the condition should be assessed and diagnosed by a consultant chest physician at a sleep medicine centre first. This can be arranged at a local NHS hospital via your GP.

Snoring: Some general pointers

• More common in smokers – giving up the habit is often helpful.
• Tends to worsen after drinking alcohol – avoiding alcohol before bed can help.
• More common in people who are overweight – losing weight may help.

Contact us for your free Consultation

For an initial free consultation about snoring treatment or other dental services contact us:

Request Your FREE Consultation



About Somnowell

Somnowell is the world’s most advanced oral appliance for treating problematic snoring and obstructive sleep apnoea. It also provides relief from bruxism (teeth grinding) and TMJ (jaw) pain.


The Somnowell sleeping appliance explained

The Somnowell sleeping appliance explained

Additional reading:

The effects of second-hand snoring are only recently beginning to be recognised as a valid health issue, as reported here by the Wall Street Journal:

Dangers of Second Hand Snoring: When Bedtime is a Health Hazard


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Dr Ashley Davenport BDS MFGDP(UK)

I qualified as a dentist in 1995 and can honestly say that I have been doing a job that I love for the past 20 plus years. Most people who know me well know that dentistry is a passion for me and that if I won the lottery I would still want to have some dentistry in my life. I get huge satisfaction from treating patients and making a difference to ...

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201 Station Road
Balsall Common
West Midlands
Tel: 01676 529000

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Last updated: December 10th, 2023

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