The causes and the factors of snoring
Do you suffer from ronchopathy? In other words, do you snore? In most cases, snoring is completely normal. However, it all depends on the intensity of the snoring. These few lines will help you to understand the main causes of snoring. Understanding why you snore is already a big step: sometimes all it takes is a slight change in your habits to say goodbye to snoring.
Is it normal to snore?
Snoring is a noise that occurs during sleep. Although unpleasant, snoring is nevertheless to some extent normal. It is also widespread. That’s right: a large part of the population snores: 10% of children and more than 40% of adults under 40.
Snoring becomes annoying when it is major (the sound level can reach 95 decibels). It can then have many long-term health implications. In addition, a large proportion of snorers suffer from sleep apnoea without knowing it. This sleep disorder can also lead to a number of health problems (excessive drowsiness, mood swings, poor quality of sleep, difficulty losing weight, etc.).
So then, how can you stop snoring? To know this, you need to know the causes of snoring; identifying them will enable you to treat the condition as best as possible.
Why do we snore?
Snoring is due to abnormal vibrations of the pharynx during inhalation. The muscles in the back of the throat, uvula, soft palate and tongue relax during deep sleep. All these organs then take up more space and partially obstruct the airways. When inhaling, it is more difficult for the air to circulate; it makes the pharynx vibrate, resulting in the characteristic snoring noise. Snoring is sometimes associated with other nocturnal breathing disorders, such as sleep apnoea.
Snoring can be temporary, intermittent or regular. Snoring, of varying degrees of intensity, has an important social impact. It can create relationship problems with your spouse and, above all, cause serious fatigue during the day. It can also cause decreased concentration and drowsiness during the day. This drowsiness can have a negative impact on the sleeper’s social and professional life. In some cases, they may even endanger it, when driving a vehicle or performing a risky task.
What causes snoring?
Snoring has many varied causes. Several factors promote snoring:
- Gender: men tend to snore more than women, especially before the age of 40.
- Overweight: being overweight and/or obese encourage regular, even daily snoring. The latter can be accompanied by sleep apnoea.
- Pregnancy: a woman who does not usually snore can quite possibly suffer from snoring during her pregnancy. This sudden change is due to weight gain and the increased presence of oestrogen during pregnancy.
- Age: snoring tends to increase with age.
- Sleeping position: sleeping on your back promotes snoring.
- Smoking: it causes inflammation of the upper airways, hindering the passage of air.
- Alcohol consumption: alcohol increases muscle relaxation.
- Taking medicines: some medicines, such as antihistamines or sleeping pills, reduce muscle tone.
- Nasal obstruction: rhinitis and angina can lead to heavy snoring throughout the night.
- Polyps: these are growths in the nasal passages that impede air circulation.
- Congestion: colds and allergies prevent air from circulating properly in the respiratory tract.
Fortunately, snoring can be treated. As you can see, it is caused, in most cases, by a bad lifestyle. Sometimes, changing your sleeping position, reviewing your diet or banning harmful substances, such as alcohol and tobacco, is enough to make you stop snoring. Avoid drinking alcohol in the evening, limit the intake of sleeping pills, maintain a healthy weight, elevate your head when you sleep. In case of congestion or allergy, you can also take an appropriate treatment and reinforce its action by installing a humidifier in your bedroom.
In addition, in some cases, the snorer must use medical means to combat snoring.
To find out how to treat snoring, we advise you to call a health professional: he or she will direct you towards a suitable solution and offer you a treatment against snoring. Among these treatments, the mandibular advancement device or an anti-snoring tray is often prescribed first. This gentle solution should be considered before even thinking about more drastic solutions, such as surgery or radio frequency.