There’s no doubt that you need to get an adequate amount of quality sleep each night to feel and function at your best. While the exact number of hours varies from person to person, the National Sleep Foundation’s latest report suggests that the optimal range for adults is between seven and nine hours per night. However, getting seven to nine hours of shut-eye each night doesn’t help you if that sleep is punctuated by snoring. This nighttime noise is often seen as just an annoyance, but in reality, the health risks of snoring can be far more serious.
What Snoring Can Do to You
Snoring can interrupt a good night’s sleep both due to the noise and to the increased difficulty you can have with breathing, as snoring is often an indicator of a serious disorder called obstructive sleep apnea. If you are the one doing the snoring, the constant interruption of your sleep can result in several physical effects, including:
- Daytime drowsiness
- Increased blood pressure
- Increased risk of neurological and cardiovascular problems including irregular heartbeat, stroke, and heart attack
You can also experience significant emotional and psychological issues too, such as:
- Poor decision-making skills
- Memory loss
- Inability to concentrate
But it’s not just the snorer who is impacted by the health risks of snoring. The bed partner of the snorer can also experience the physical, emotional and psychological effects because his or her sleep is interrupted too. Relationships often become a third victim of snoring, putting a partnership onto a rocky road:
- It can force you to sleep in separate bedrooms
- The moodiness and irritability can result in more fights
- Your sex life can be negatively impacted
Adults are not the only ones at risk. Children who snore or who live with a snoring parent that disturbs their sleep often experience:
- Poor concentration in school and poor academic progress
- Issues with proper growth
How to Tell if Snoring Is Affecting You or a Loved One
Snoring itself may be an obvious problem that’s audible to all, but the effects that snoring has upon your quality of life may not be as overt. Because of this, it is often difficult to make the decision to seek help.
To see how snoring might be harming you, take our simple snore quiz to gauge how the health risks of snoring may be impacting your daily life.
When You Know You Need Treatment, You Have Options
The Snoring and Sleep Institute of Atlanta offers a wide range of non-invasive and minimally invasive treatments performed right inside the doctor’s office that are designed to target and treat the root cause(s) of your snoring problem. Treatments offered include:
- Oral appliance therapy moves your tongue or jaw into a position that allows you to get more air as you sleep
- Base of tongue ablation, turbinate reduction and tonsillectomy are all procedures that reduce the amount of tissue that may be blocking or sagging into your airways (both your throat and your nose)
- The Pillar Procedure helps stiffen the soft palate, keeping the excess tissue from blocking your airway as you sleep
If you think snoring is creating issues for you or your loved ones, contact sleep specialist Dr. Sinha at the Snoring and Sleep Institute of Atlanta. The health risks of snoring are too severe to ignore, so get an evaluation as soon as you can. You’ll be happy you did, especially when you finally get the restful and restorative sleep you’ve been missing.