Most snoring is simply limited to a bedroom annoyance. However, for 4-10 percent of adults, snoring is an indication of a potentially life-threatening sleep disorder called obstructive sleep apnea. Snoring and sleep apnea are on a spectrum of sleep breathing.
Snoring is caused by turbulence and resistance in the back of the throat, usually as a result of excess soft tissues. As we go to sleep, the muscles that keep the airway open begin to relax. The area that is outlined by the uvula, tongue, and lateral pharyngeal walls comes closer together creating a narrowing and increased wind resistance, which leads to turbulence and the snore sound.
Risk factors for snoring include increased weight, advanced age, male gender, body position, and alcohol use. In children, large tonsils are often the culprit.
There are several treatment options for snoring and obstructive sleep apnea. Modifying some of the above variables often has a beneficial impact.
For simple snoring, there are several oral appliance options that are available. Stop Snoring snore guards, and antisnoring mouthpieces work by moving the jaw forward, which opens the back of the oral airway, which reduces snoring.
For sleep apnea, treatment options may include CPAP, CPAP supplies, weight loss if overweight, surgery, andsleep apnea mouthpieces, mouth guards.
Reference : American Sleep Association
Dr. Unnikrishnan Thamarassery,
MS ENT, MRCS ENT Edinburgh