Snoring is a rattling sound that often accompanies the breathing of a sleeping person. This phenomenon has a different frequency, and can be traced in both adults and children. According to statistics, most often middle-aged and elderly people snore in their sleep (from 35–40% of men and more than 15% of all women).
Snoring is a social problem. And mainly married couples suffer from it, because sometimes it is almost impossible to sleep next to a snoring person. What are the causes of snoring? How is snoring diagnosed and treated without a doctor?
Sleep snoring and diagnosis of the syndrome
Clinical diagnosis of snoring consists of a whole list of informative manipulations, which can be prescribed and partially carried out by an ENT. Initially, the doctor examines the patient, learns about the nature of snoring and the presence of associated symptoms. It is important to establish the approximate dates when a person first began to snore in his sleep. Are there any changes in weight over this period?
An examination of the ENT organs can provide important information about the causes of snoring. It is this procedure that allows you to quickly identify various defects of the pharynx and nose, including polyps, an elongated palatine tongue, a deviated nasal septum, inflamed tonsils, hypertrophy (increase in volume) of the nasal mucosa.
The patient may complain about:
- regular snoring during sleep;
- nocturnal attacks of suffocation;
- headaches after sleep;
- constant sleepiness while awake.
It is important to know that snoring while sleeping is dangerous. The sound phenomenon can be a symptom of a severe sleep disorder — obstructive sleep apnea syndrome (OSA), in which there are short-term pauses in breathing and collapse may develop. OSA requires strict medical supervision. It is important to conduct a complete diagnosis of the patient’s condition, determine the causes of snoring and eliminate them.
All diagnostics of snoring and obstructive sleep apnea can be conditionally divided into four different categories:
- screening systems;
- systems with a limited set of parameters;
- mobile polysomnography system;
- stationary polysomnographic system.
Screening systems are computer pulse oximetry and respiratory monitoring. For example, for pulse oximetry, special portable devices are used that record signals. Based on the result of such a test, a report is generated, consisting of pulse data and blood oxygen saturation parameters.
Systems with a limited set of parameters are time-consuming and expensive techniques that are often used in somnology. These include cardio-respiratory devices and advanced respiratory devices.
A stationary polysomnographic system records various parameters of the body’s work during daytime or nighttime sleep. The mobile polysomnography system works on a similar principle. The only difference is that the diagnosis of the patient’s condition can be carried out without the control of the medical staff on duty.
Also, to diagnose snoring, the doctor may prescribe computed tomography, rhinomanometry (monitoring the patency of the nasal passages) and polysomnography (an electrophysiological procedure).
Causes of snoring
All the causes of snoring are different in appearance, but the sound during sleep appears mainly due to the relaxation of the muscles of the soft palate, tongue or pharynx. Due to the fact that weakened tissues block the airways, the flow of air during inhalation and exhalation increases, creating vibration and, as a result, snoring.
Doctors note two separate categories of causes of snoring:
- External factors. This subgroup of causes includes taking sleeping pills or sedatives, bad habits (drinking alcoholic beverages just before bedtime), and incorrect posture during sleep.
- Physiological factors. This category of causes of snoring includes polyps, anatomical features of the nose and throat, excess weight, chronic nasal congestion, malocclusion, adenoids (growth of the nasopharyngeal tonsil).
Sometimes the cause of snoring is a common cold. The accumulation of mucus in the nasal passages makes breathing difficult and leads to the appearance of a sound syndrome that accompanies sleep.
Doctors’ advice: how to cure snoring?
It is important to treat the sound syndrome, which appears due to the vibration of the tissues of the throat during sleep, under the strict guidance of a competent specialist. You need to understand that snoring is only a consequence, but it is necessary to establish exactly the cause of its occurrence. Only a doctor can determine the severity of a patient’s condition. To understand how to cure snoring in a particular case, you need to contact a therapist or ENT. Consultation with a pulmonologist or orthodontist may be recommended.
Snoring is a phenomenon that occurs for a number of reasons. And the therapy of such a syndrome will depend solely on the type of disorders leading to snoring.
- If your snoring is due to a malocclusion, then an orthodontist will help solve the problem. The doctor will diagnose the condition of the oral cavity and try to correct the problem with the help of dental structures: braces or trainers.
- If snoring appeared due to the anatomical features of the structure of the larynx or nose, then you may need special medical designs that are selected on an individual basis, for example, face masks or devices for the oral cavity.
- To cure snoring with a runny nose or sore throat, when the tonsils of the larynx are enlarged, you should try to take into account all the advice of doctors. The attending specialist will definitely prescribe anti-inflammatory medications for the throat, which will relieve swelling from the tonsils, as well as vasoconstrictor drops and aerosols for the nose.
How to cure snoring, the doctor knows. If an unpleasant sound syndrome is combined with the habit of sleeping with an open mouth, then the ENT may prescribe a special bandage that fixes the lower jaw. Tires to maintain a soft palate are also common. To know exactly how to treat snoring, and not to experiment with your own health, it is best to seek medical help as soon as possible.
Otolaryngology. National leadership. / ed. V.T. Palchuna - 2014