The subject of countless jokes, snoring isn’t just a harmless distraction. For those affected, it can have serious, real-world consequences. The good news is there are things you can do to help you stop snoring.
Being irritable throughout the day, not being able to concentrate, and being constantly tired are all signs you’re not getting enough sleep.
If snoring is the main cause of this, then don’t worry, there is something you can do about it.
Stop snoring and notice the changes
Around 50% of people snore occasionally, with 25% snoring every night. The problem is, snoring doesn’t just affect one person; it can be a problem for everyone in the house.
Getting a good night’s sleep is not just good for you – it’s essential. The short and long-term effects of sleep deprivation are all too real, and damaging to your physical and mental health.
Symptoms from feeling tired and grumpy all day in the short-term, through to long-term effects like high blood pressure and heart disease and not getting a recommended 7-9 hours of sleep can be disastrous.
Why do we snore?
Our bodies tend to relax when we sleep, and this includes the muscles in our throat. This relaxation narrows our airways, increasing the pressure as the air passes through when we breathe. This in turn causes the soft tissue around it to vibrate, and this makes the unique snoring noise we’re all familiar with.
Around a quarter of people who snore suffer from a disorder known as sleep apnoea. This is a dangerous medical condition where the muscles at the back of the throat become so relaxed they block off the airway completely. This actually causes a person to repeatedly stop and start breathing during the night.
This constant interruption of air results in a drop of blood oxygen levels. This is known medically as hypoxia, and this signals your brain to disrupt your sleep, making the sufferer suddenly gasp for air.
This relentless switching between sleeping and waking means you never get a good, deep sleep. People who suffer from sleep apnoea are constantly tired, can have serious health issues, and age prematurely.
What are the dangers?
Fatigue is the main symptom of sleep deprivation. This doesn’t mean you just “feel tired”. Fatigue means chronic exhaustion, which is dangerous.
Every year thousands of accidents, both at home and in the workplace are caused by lack of sleep. In Australia, it’s estimated that 20% of all road traffic deaths are caused by driver fatigue.
Sleep also is essential for your brain on a chemical level. It’s during REM sleep that you process the day, creating new neural pathways. Your body also releases growth hormones during sleep, and produces proteins which help repair damage.
Sleep apnoea can also lead to higher blood pressure and heart problems. The sudden drop in blood oxygen levels releases stress hormones, and increases the strain on the cardiovascular system.
And of course, there’s the fact that people who don’t get a good night’s sleep are 12% more likely to die early compared to those who get a good 7 hours of shut-eye.
We offer sleep apnoea treatments
Our clinic offers the latest in sleep apnoea treatment, with varying options depending on the severity of the snoring.
For mild cases, we use dental devices such as a mandibular advancement device. This opens your airway by bringing your lower jaw, tongue and associated soft tissue forward during sleep, allowing you to breathe.
In more severe cases, we use a CPAP device, which stands for Continuous Positive Airflow Pressure. This is a mask worn while sleeping, which uses air pressure to maintain a continuous motion, allowing air to pass unobstructed.
In rare extreme cases, surgery may be required, although success is not always guaranteed. It’s best to check all your options before committing to surgery.
If you suffer from sleep apnoea, we may be able to help. Our holistic approach supports treating not only the symptoms but any underlying causes as well.
We strongly believe in fixing the cause, rather than treating the symptom.
Talk to us today and take the first step to getting a good night’s sleep. Our friendly and experienced staff will be happy to answer any questions you may have.