What your doctors in Astoria and Portland, Oregon, want you to know
Snoring is a common problem. In fact, according to the National Sleep Foundation, 37 million people in the United States snore regularly. There are several reasons you might be snoring. Your doctors at Pacific Sleep Program in Portland, Oregon want to share the facts about snoring and what you can do about it. They have offices in Portland, and Astoria, Oregon to help you.
Snoring is caused when your soft palate, tongue, and throat relax completely during deep sleep. The soft tissues begin to vibrate causing snoring. The sounds will become louder as your airway narrows. If your airway is blocked completely, you may have sleep apnea which can be serious. According to the National Sleep Foundation, about half of people who snore regularly have sleep apnea.
There are several risk factors and causes of snoring. You are at greater risk of snoring due to:
- Oral anatomy; if you have a low soft palate, your airway can become narrow or blocked
- Structural issues with your nose; if you have narrowed nasal passages due to a deviated septum, it increases your chances of snoring
- Excess weight; if you are overweight, you may have extra tissue in the back of your throat which can narrow or block your airway
- Drinking alcohol; alcohol relaxes your throat, which can cause narrowing of your airway
- Sleeping position; if you sleep on your back, it will relax your throat, narrowing your airway
There are some lifestyle changes you can do to limit snoring. You can try:
- Maintaining a healthy weight
- Taking a nasal decongestant before bed
- Avoiding alcohol consumption before bed
- Sleeping on your side
For chronic, loud snoring, it’s best to visit your doctors at Pacific Sleep Program. They may suggest a sleep study to determine your sleep patterns, snoring, or if you have sleep apnea. They may suggest several effective treatments including:
- An oral mandibular advancement appliance, which moves your jaw and tongue forward, keeping your airway open while you sleep
- A continuous positive airway pressure appliance, which provides a continuous flow of oxygen while you sleep
- Tissue ablation or laser surgery to remove excess tissue
Snoring can be annoying to you and your family members, but you don’t have to put up with it. Call your doctors at Pacific Sleep Program in Portland, or Astoria, Oregon. They want to help you get a good night’s sleep, so call today!