Snoring is a very common occurrence; According to the Sleep Health Foundation, 30% – 40% of adults snore at least sometimes. When snoring becomes regular, it can put you at risk of some serious health problems down the road.
When you snore, you don’t breathe properly. When you don’t breathe properly, you don’t sleep as deeply, which means that you may not be getting proper restorative sleep.
A regular lack of sleep can affect your health in a number of ways. It starts with moodiness, fatigue and difficulty concentrating. According to the NHS UK, ongoing lack of sleep can also put you at risk for more serious conditions such as high blood pressure and diabetes.
Interruptions to Breathing
A portion of people who snore also have sleep apnoea. Snoring occurs when the muscles at the back of the throat relax and the loose tissue of the soft palate hangs down, partially blocking the pharynx (or the upper airway). If the tissue obstructs the pharynx too much, breathing might stop for ten seconds or even a minute. When this happens, you might wake up for a few seconds to start breathing again and then fall back asleep.
Sleep apnoea is a medical condition that affects your sleep and your cardiovascular health.
Ongoing lack of sleep can lead to high blood pressure, and if you have sleep apnoea, the risk of heart disease increases too.
When you stop breathing in your sleep, the oxygen levels in your blood drop momentarily, which raises your blood pressure. This is when you wake up to take in a big breath before dozing again.
If this continues to happen regularly, it can lead to hypertension, which means that blood pressure consistently high. Hypertension is a risk factor for heart disease and stroke.
What Can You Do?
There are a number of things that you can do about snoring, from lifestyle changes to sleep aids. At Specialist Clinics of Australia, we’ve found that a multifaceted approach works best. Our SleepTight program combines laser treatments with lifestyle consultations and a very small sleep device. You can speak to your GP or book a consultation with us directly for further information.