Snoring can interrupt your sleep pattern so you don't get the most restful sleep. It can also keep anyone else you sleep with from feeling rested in the morning. There are a number of reasons why you snore. Some you can help with while others need a doctor's attention. Here are some of the typical causes for snoring and how they can be treated.
The Causes of Snoring
The basic reason for snoring is that your body is struggling to get enough air into your lungs. A blockage in your airways or swollen tissues prevent the air from flowing freely. As your body tries to force more air in, tissues in the airway begin to vibrate. Some of the ways that the snoring sounds are produced include:
- the soft palate in the roof of your mouth may vibrate, especially if it is longer or thicker than normal
- the small tissue that hangs down in the back of your throat, called the uvula, can vibrate against the throat
- swollen tissues in the nose and throat from a cold or allergy can begin vibrating
- deformed cartilage in the nose can narrow the airway and cause the nostrils and other tissues to vibrate
An ear nose and throat doctor will determine the cause of your snoring and recommend treatment based on what tissues are vibrating. Some treatments you can do yourself, while other approaches require surgery to correct the problem.
Nasal Strips - These adhesive strips are applied to the nostrils outside of the nose. The strips are springy and try to keep your nostrils open to increase the airway. You can find these strips in your local drug store. If your problem is in the mouth or throat, these strips won't help to get rid of the snoring.
Oral Appliances - These devices are worn in the mouth and look a little like the mouth guards used in sports. These devices force your mouth open slightly as you sleep. Some can prevent the soft palate in the roof of your mouth from vibrating. You can find these devices at the drug store, but your doctor can prescribed a custom device which will be more comfortable to wear while you sleep.
Nasal Surgery - If you have crooked cartilage in your nose, your doctor may recommend a angioplasty. During this procedure, the doctor shaves away part of the cartilage to open up the nasal passages so you can breathe easier.
For more information, contact William M. Parell, MD, PSC or a similar medical professional.Share