23 April 2018
National Stop Snoring Week (23 to 27 April) throws a spotlight on a common problem, that affects approximately 40% of the adult population. But while sufferers may be oblivious of the condition, their partners are all too aware and are often left feeling exhausted and sleep-deprived as a result.
What causes snoring?
Snoring is caused by vibrations in the airway behind the tongue. During the day, the tight muscles at the back of the throat hold the airway open, but during sleep these muscles relax. The reasons for snoring include:
- Airway anatomy, which can be genetic
- Breathing through your mouth
- Small or collapsed nostrils
- Taking sedatives
- Sleep position
Diagnosis and treatments
So, you think you might be snoring but what should you do next? The first step is to see one of our consultants to discuss your medical history and symptoms. They will advise if you need further diagnostic tests, such as a blood test or scan. You will also be advised of any additional costs.
Your consultant could suggest you change your sleeping position or wear a specially designed mouth device. A regular sleeping pattern, keeping your bedroom dark, getting regular exercise during the day and sleeping in cotton nightwear will all help you sleep better.
If the relatively straightforward measures don’t work then surgery may be the best option for you. An ear, nose and throat specialist can remove enlarged tonsils, straighten broken noses, or remove nasal polyps if they are the cause. It is likely the surgeon will want you to undergo a sleep study beforehand so they can advise on the best course of action for you.
Don’t let your snoring get you down - make this the week you do something about it.