Sleep apnea is a dangerous condition that negatively impacts your breathing patterns. Patients with sleep apnea experience greater than five pauses in breathing per hour. This dangerous cycle can have serious health consequences over time and wreak havoc on your quality of life and relationships.
It’s a common myth that all patients who snore have sleep apnea. While snoring is a common symptom, anyone can have sleep apnea. Even though they’re both characterized by audible disturbances, they differ greatly in other aspects. Let’s take a closer look at the relationship between sleep apnea and snoring.
What Causes Snoring?
During sleep, the tissues in your throat can relax causing vibration and sound when air passes through your lungs known as snoring. It can also be caused by drug and alcohol use, nasal congestion, sleep deprivation, and your sleeping position.
The Facts on Snoring & Sleep Apnea
While many people don’t associate the noisy disturbances of snoring with severe effects, studies prove it’s a warning sign of sleep apnea. One study saw a direct correlation between snoring and obstructive sleep apnea. Another study noticed that snoring intensifies as sleep apnea becomes more severe.
While these findings prove that there’s a relationship between snoring and sleep apnea, clinicians warn that patients with mild or no snoring tendencies can also have the disorder. Another type of sleep apnea, central sleep apnea is typically a result of a more serious underlying condition and isn’t linked with snoring.
Sleep Apnea & Snoring
Sleep apnea occurs when the tissues in your throat relax and block your airway, thereby restricting breathing and causing a sleep apnea event. A sleep apnea event is often followed by gasping for air or choking. It’s rare that the person with the condition wakes up due to the event and it’s typically a sleeping partner who first notices these symptoms.
How to Tell the Difference Between Sleep Apnea & Snoring
If you have sleep apnea, only a sleep study can diagnose the disorder. However, if you snore loudly, gasp for air, or choke during sleep you’ll want to get a sleep study so we can get a clear diagnosis and start treatment right away. The good news is that the negative effects of sleep apnea can be reversed with treatment.
At North Texas Sleep Solutions, Dr. Lauck offers an oral appliance to treat sleep apnea and snoring. An oral appliance gently shifts your jaw forward, thereby preventing tissues from obstructing your airway or creating the auditory noise that comes with snoring.
Snoring & Sleep Apnea Treatment For a Better Night’s Rest
Whether you snore or have sleep apnea, at North Texas Sleep Solutions we treat both. We offer a variety of services that can be customized to meet your individual needs so you and your partner can enjoy restful nights followed by energized mornings. Contact our office to schedule a consultation with Dr. Lauck by calling (817) 431-6764 and we’ll help you on your journey to a quality night’s rest.