While snoring is often the butt of the joke, it’s not always a laughing matter. Snoring can be one of the first warning signs of sleep apnea, a dangerous condition with life-threatening consequences. When is snoring dangerous? In this article, we discuss common causes of snoring and signs you may be suffering from sleep apnea.
Snoring is one of many issues we treat here at ENTFPSS. Our otolaryngologists will sit down with you, discuss your concerns, and outline your treatment options – your health is our number one priority! Call 215-659-8805 to find out more.
Is Snoring Dangerous?
Typically, no. Snoring is the sound generated when your breath passes relaxed tissues in your throat. Therefore, any factor that causes muscles in the area to “loosen” will lead to or exacerbate snoring. For example, alcohol causes muscles to relax, so knocking back a drink before bed may cause you to snore. Plus, as you get older, these tissues tend to relax increasing your chances of snoring next time you snooze.
By making a few changes, you can often minimize or eliminate snoring altogether. You can try:
- Sleeping on your side;
- Clearing your nose before bed either by using nasal strips, nasal decongestant, or a neti pot;
- Elevating your head by four inches in bed using a second pillow;
- Investing in an anti-snoring mouth device; and
- Using a humidifier to eliminate dry air which can irritate the membranes in your throat and nose.
However, snoring can also be the symptom of a far more serious underlying condition: obstructive sleep apnea. This condition is caused by your muscles intermittently relaxing and blocking your airway and causing your breathing to stop and restart throughout the night. While there are several different kinds of sleep apnea, obstructive sleep apnea is often associated with snoring.
Left untreated, obstructive sleep apnea can lead to:
- Heart issues
- Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD)
- Chronic fatigue
What You Can Do About Snoring
Whether your snoring is keeping your partner awake at night and you want a cure or you’re suffering from sleep apnea, you’ve come to the right place. Dr. Goldberg and the team at ENTFPSS will make sure you get the help you need, following up to make sure problems are resolved and your health improves. Contact us today at 215-659-8805 to find out more about our snoring treatments.