|Snoring is a nighttime nuisance for many people, whether they snore or share a bedroom with a snorer. About 25 percent of women and 40 percent of men snore regularly. Chronic snoring can be more than an annoyance — it can signal serious health problems.
Simply put, snoring is the result of a partially blocked upper airway. The obstructed flow of air vibrates tissue in the back of the throat, causing sound to come from the nose, mouth or both.
Several factors contribute to snoring. Obesity is a common cause because excess fat obstructs the throat. Various physical abnormalities may also be responsible, such as large tonsils or a deviated septum (the cartilage wall dividing the nostrils). An abnormally long, soft palate or uvula may also contribute to snoring.
Snoring can also be a result of relaxed muscles in the throat. This is typical with advanced age, explaining why snoring becomes more common in one’s later years. Alcohol and sleeping pills also relax throat muscles and potentially lead to snoring.
Where should you start if you have a snoring problem? One of the best things to curtail snoring is to lose excess weight. Another anti-snoring technique that helps many people is to simply change positions.
Chiropractic may help. Snoring can be the result of structural dysfunction in the neck. A revealing study describes the correlation between vertebral subluxations and snoring — as shown in X-rays of 138 patients (J Vert Sublux Res 1999;3:9-23).
If snoring is standing between you and a good night’s sleep — and possibly your health — call us today to schedule a consultation.Dr. Barbara Smith