Why do people snore: Is it a health issue?

Snoring is considered as a nuisance more than a health issue. Sleeping partners tend to complain about snoring without realising the health risks involved with it. Snoring is the hoarse sound unknowingly produced from a person’s mouth while they sleep. It is a very normal issue faced by almost everyone.

Snoring is often seen in people who are overweight. Snoring also tends to increase with age. This is because the throat muscles tend to relax with age. Besides aging, alcohol intake also leads to the relaxation of throat muscles. So, consuming alcohol right before one hits the bed can increase the chances of snoring. The structure of the nose and throat also plays an important role in snoring. Also, snoring as such can be a health concern called “Obstructive Sleep Apnea”.

Below are a few common reasons why people snore during their sleep:

  • Alcohol or drug consumption
  • Block nasal airways
  • Relaxation of tongue and throat muscles
  • Obesity
  • Sleep position
  • Lack of sleep

A more clear picture of the reason behind your snoring can be found with the help of a doctor. A doctor might probably recommend you with a few tests like X-ray, MRI scan, or CT-scan to get a deeper understanding of the disturbances in the airways. It is important to seek medical assistance as snoring caused due to obstructive sleep apnea can pose several health risks that can lead to the following problems.

  • Drop in the level of blood oxygen
  • Irregular heartbeat, increasing the risk of cardiovascular diseases and strokes
  • Risk of diabetes
  • Mental health problems

Snoring is not always taken to a doctor, mostly because of embarrassment and unawareness. However, snoring is an important concern that requires to be addressed. The initial steps of treatment for snoring usually involve a few lifestyle changes like a reduction of body weight, avoiding alcohol intake before bed, etc. Doctors also recommend oral appliances that help to keep the airways open while one sleeps. Some surgeries help to stop snoring too. Apart from these, simple changes like sleeping on a side rather than on the back, raising the head of the bed a few inches, sticking to a sleeping schedule, etc. will also help in stopping the snoring to an extent.

Snoring, in most of the cases, is harmless. But the sleep deprivation caused by this might affect the quality of not only your life.

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