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Signs That Your Snoring is Serious

man snoring in bed keeping his wife upAbout 45% of American adults snore at least occasionally, and although it may be the source of jokes for those who hear it, the sound may be nothing to laugh about. In some cases, snoring can be a sign that you have a much more serious medical condition.

In this blog, the sleep apnea specialist at eos dental sleep, addresses the signs that could indicate your snoring is serious and explains what types of snoring treatment are available.

What are the telltale signs that snoring is something serious?

If you have a chronic snoring problem, it may indicate the presence of sleep apnea, a serious sleep disorder. Although not everyone who snores has sleep apnea, nearly everyone who has sleep apnea does snore.

Sleep apnea deprives your brain and the rest of your body of oxygen as you repeatedly stop breathing during sleep due to an airway obstruction. This can have serious consequences for your health and can even increase your risk of having a heart attack, stroke, or an irregular heart rhythm.

If you have any of the following symptoms, it could be an indication that you have sleep apnea and require treatment:

  • Excessive daytime sleepiness, which may include falling asleep while driving or at work
  • Loud snoring
  • Breathing pauses during sleep
  • Gasping or choking sounds during sleep
  • Awakening abruptly and feeling short of breath
  • Morning headaches
  • Waking up with a dry mouth or sore throat
  • Insomnia
  • Difficulty remembering or concentrating
  • Irritability
  • Difficulty losing weight

What types of snoring treatment are available?

There are a number of different snoring treatment options available, but two of the most common treatments include:

  • Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) – A CPAP device sends a steady stream of air through a hose attached to a mask that’s worn over your nose or your nose and mouth. The airflow helps keep your airway open and ensures you’re getting a proper supply of oxygen as you sleep.
  • Oral appliance therapy (OAT) – An oral appliance is a custom-made mouthpiece that’s worn only at night and is a good alternative for many patients who are unable to tolerate CPAP. It’s similar to an orthodontic retainer or a mouthpiece that’s worn during sports, and the device is usually easy to get used to wearing. OAT works by preventing the collapse of the tongue and soft tissues in the back of the throat. This helps keep your airway open during sleep. An oral appliance can be used in conjunction with CPAP or used on its own for patients who have trouble using CPAP.

If you’re experiencing chronic snoring or other symptoms that may be indicative of sleep apnea, it’s important to be evaluated. Make an appointment today at eos dental sleep in Philadelphia by calling (215) 241-0700.