Snoring: a deadly threat to sleep, health and life itself
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 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.
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For an initial free consultation about snoring treatment or other dental services contact us:Request Your FREE Consultation
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 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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