Snoring Might Be A Symptom Of Sleep Apnea That Needs Treatment

If your partner complains about your snoring, you should probably talk to your doctor about it. Snoring is a symptom of obstructive sleep apnea. If you have sleep apnea, then your snoring is more than an annoyance, it could also be hurting your health. Here are some treatments for snoring that might help.

Elevate The Head Of Your Bed

You snore because your airway becomes obstructed when you fall asleep and become deeply relaxed. Your sleeping position can influence this. If you are flat on your back, you increase the risk of snoring. Try to stay on your side if possible and consider elevating the head of your bed on blocks. Sleeping in an elevated position uses gravity to help keep your airway open by relieving some of the pressure on your upper airway from excess tissue and body fat.

Use An Oral Appliance

An oral device might help stop your snoring because it pulls your jaw slightly forward so your airway stays open. Your doctor may refer you to a sleep apnea dentist to have one of these custom made. You can also buy one over the counter, but you should still let your doctor know about your snoring. Since you're asleep when you snore, you might not know the extent of your problem and you won't know if a device is working properly. When your doctor prescribes a device, it is often after sleep testing and a follow-up test that determines if the treatment is working.

Lose Weight

If you're overweight, the excess fat might be pushing on your airway and causing it to collapse at night. The solution for this is to lose weight if you can. Losing weight can sometimes reverse sleep apnea, but you may need to use some sort of treatment until you've reached your ideal weight.

Medical Treatments

If your snoring is bad enough and it's linked to sleep apnea, then your doctor may recommend CPAP or surgery. These treatments are necessary when your snoring is so bad that it interferes with your breathing and has a negative impact on your health. A CPAP machine uses air pressure to keep your airway open and surgery removes some of the excess tissue that crowds into your airway when you sleep. Snoring does not always require these drastic treatments, but it should alert you to the potential for problems. If you suspect your snore and you always feel drowsy during the day or if you have frequent headaches too, your snoring could be affecting your health and need some sort of medical intervention.