According to statistics, one in five people snores in their sleep. This disrupts the sleep of not only the snorer, but also the spouse sleeping next to him. After all, older people, both men and women, are more likely to suffer from this disease. Snoring is a symptom of the pathology of the ENT organs, overweight or functional disorders. It can be accompanied by bouts of sleep apnea — stopping breathing for a few seconds, leading to oxygen starvation of the organs. Due to the extremely high prevalence of this condition, the Healthyinfo site will look into why it occurs and how to cure this problem.
Description and causes of snoring
Snoring is a breathing disorder during sleep that is accompanied by a low frequency rattling sound. Due to the relaxed state of the soft palate and the muscles of the pharynx, the inhaled air cannot pass through the upper respiratory tract fully. The soft tissues of the larynx and pharynx begin to vibrate, making the corresponding sound. The causes of snoring are known enough today. Today, the most basic of them will be considered — knowledge of these conditions largely answers the question of how to cure snoring.
Congenital anatomical features of the structure of the laryngopharynx serve as proof of the presence of snoring at an early age. The elongated uvula, being a process of the soft palate, blocks the lumen of the pharynx, and the air cannot pass further. Other, no less significant, developmental anomalies include weakness of the muscles of the soft palate, a large tongue or a long palate. A common cause diagnosed in all age categories is a deviated septum. It is a plate that divides the nasal cavity in half. A deviated septum, a frequent consequence of nasal trauma, not only obstructs airflow, but also contributes to the development of chronic rhinitis. Thus, it exacerbates the violation of nasal breathing.
During infectious diseases, the palatine tonsils increase in size and block the lumen of the pharynx. Air passing through the narrowed gap causes vibrations of the corresponding muscles and snoring occurs. Diagnosing this condition is not difficult. It is difficult for such people to breathe, so when they talk, their respiratory rate increases and their mouth is ajar. Adenoids can block the lumen of the nasopharynx — an enlarged pharyngeal tonsil. Lymphoid tissue grows under the influence of allergic or infectious agents. Children are susceptible to the disease. In addition to snoring, adenoids cause hearing loss and nasal breathing difficulties.
Polyps are growths of the nasal mucosa. This is a common pathology among adults. It is diagnosed only when the polyp reaches a large size and blocks the nasal passages. Against this background, it is possible to attach an infection, catarrhal and vasomotor rhinitis — due to the development of mucosal edema, they also contribute to the appearance of snoring. In old age, muscle tone is reduced, and in the supine position they sag. At the same time, air passing through the respiratory tract causes vibrations of the palatine uvula. Among other causes of snoring, mention should be made of obesity, the use of alcoholic beverages and sedatives, and menopause in women.
Sleep snoring and breathing problems
Breathing disorders during sleep are very dangerous with the appearance of sleep apnea. The breath hold lasts a few seconds, but it can be repeated up to several hundred times during the night. At this point, the patient turns restlessly in bed without waking up. Restoration of breathing is accompanied by sonorous snoring in a dream. Apnea can be central, obstructive or mixed genesis. Not all people who snore in their sleep experience breath holding attacks. Apnea is more common in men who are overweight. The mechanism of the appearance of this condition is the subsidence of the airways at the level of the soft palate, the root of the tongue and the epiglottis.
In the morning, such patients have a headache, increased blood pressure. During the day — drowsiness and fatigue. The most severe consequences develop as a result of oxygen starvation of organs. This is the risk of heart attacks, severe cardiac arrhythmias, strokes. The synthesis of somatotropic hormone decreases and, thereby, the metabolism of fats is disturbed. Food is not used to form energy, but is deposited in fat depots. Weight loss becomes almost impossible, and a vicious circle closes.
Sleep snoring and hypoxia are dangerous for diabetics. The presence of these pathologies exacerbates the course of the disease, and accelerates the development of complications. Apnea is a rather dangerous condition, it can cause death not only for adults, but also for babies. Heredity plays a significant role in the development of breath holding. Therefore, families in which the fact of sudden infant death is recorded should be extremely careful.
How to cure snoring
Snoring, despite its prevalence, is not a sentence, the main thing is to identify its cause in time. One of the common recommendations on how to cure snoring on your own is the correct position in a dream — you need to sleep on your side with your head elevated, for this you use an additional pillow. In case of inflammation, you should pick up vasoconstrictor drops, rinse the nasal cavity with a saline solution, and if necessary, inhale with hot water and herbal infusion.
Drug treatment of snoring consists in the use of drugs such as Slipex or Dr. Khrap. They increase the tone of the muscles of the oropharynx and have a decongestant effect on the nasal mucosa. In pharmacies, they are sold in the form of sprays and sprayed at night. Antiseptics and antibiotics are needed if an infectious process is suspected; in case of allergic rhinitis, antihistamines cannot be dispensed with. In the fight against snoring, not the last place is occupied by palatal implants and caps. The implant serves to strengthen the palate, it is administered on an outpatient basis, under local anesthesia. The cap, made of plastic, helps to keep the lower jaw in the advanced state, preventing the muscles of the pharynx from subsiding.
In the treatment of obstructive sleep apnea, the CPAP method (from the English abbreviation CPAP — Constant Positive Airway Pressure) is used. Its essence is to maintain positive airway pressure during sleep. The answer to the question “How to cure snoring?” in some cases, a surgeon can give — with the help of such operations as uvuloplasty, tonsillectomy, septicoplasty, adenoidectomy. Many methods of treatment today allow us to provide an individual approach to each patient. Thanks to this, it is possible, if not to completely cure snoring, then at least to drastically reduce the likelihood of such complications as sleep apnea and the oxygen starvation associated with it.