Snoring occurs when air cannot move freely via the passageway at the back of the nose and mouth. Soft tissues, including the soft palate, uvula and tonsils surround this area. During sleep, these tissues relax, and air passing through them can cause the vibrating sounds known as snoring.
Usually snoring isn’t a serious condition; however there are few exceptions when snoring can lead to deadly consequences such as heart attack or stroke. This happens when the snoring is due to sleep apnea.
In a patient with sleep apnea, loud snoring alternates with periods of obstructed breathing that could last for a minute or two throughout the night. The obstruction reduces blood levels of oxygen, causing the heart to pump much faster. Carbon dioxide levels begin to rise, and eventually the person sleeping must gasp, to get more air, this gasping sound could be audible to someone sitting close by. The condition is associated with high blood pressure, heart attack, and stroke.
A dentist can help in reducing snoring by adjusting the positions of the jaws; in several cases a dental device is also placed so as to solve the issue of snoring.
If you or anyone you know has issues with snoring, you should get it checked out immediately. Reach out to us and e may be able to help you.