Hope for Snoring
Snoring is a problem shared by more than 25 percent of the population. It occurs more frequently in men and people who are overweight. Habitual snoring disrupts a family’s peaceful night’s sleep. Snoring also disturbs the snorer’s own sleep patterns, resulting in a feeling of being tired, even after what seems like a good night’s sleep. Habitual snoring makes a restful sleep nearly impossible for everyone. A snorer, however, is helpless to control or stop the snoring. At Cleveland Clinic, an ENT doctor can offer some snoring treatments.
Obstructive Sleep Apnea
Some snorers may experience the most serious form of snoring, called obstructive sleep apnea. Obstructive sleep apnea is characterized by loud snoring, which is interrupted by frequent periods when breathing is restricted (hypopnea) or actually stops (apnea). This disorder is sometimes fatal if apnea extends over longer periods of time and becomes more frequent. Many snorers are unaware of the implications of the problem of obstructive sleep apnea. A laboratory sleep study can be performed by an ENT doctor to determine the extent and severity of obstructive sleep apnea.
Causes of Snoring
Snoring occurs when the airway becomes physically obstructed. This may be caused by poor muscle tone in the throat and tongue, which allows them to collapse and fall back into the airway. Snoring also occurs with enlarged tonsils and adenoids or with a long palate and/or uvula. These obstructing tissues vibrate loudly when the person breathes, resulting in a snoring sound. Snoring treatments used by Cleveland Clinic's Head and Neck Institute allow patients to sleep without disturbance.