If you live with somebody who snores, you may feel like the only person on the planet who is stuck listening to somebody else snore instead of getting restful sleep.
If you’re the one who snores, you may not realize how many health problems that snoring can cause – including some potentially life-threatening complications.
Around half of all people will snore at some point in their life. With that in mind, here are 60 amazing snoring facts you must learn now:
Snoring Facts: 1-5
1. Snoring is a widespread issue. About half of all people will suffer from snoring at some point in their lives. If you factor in the lost sleep of partners who sleep with people who snore, that’s a lot of suffering due to snoring.
2. While snoring is more common in men, plenty of women snore, too. Around 40% of men and 24% of women snore on a regular basis. Snoring tends to get worse with age. Congestion from a cold or the flu can also lead to snoring, even in people who don’t typically snore. As a result, many people will encounter a snoring person at some point in their dating or married lives.
3. Snoring can put a huge strain on a relationship. The partner whose sleep is disturbed often resents the person who snores and shuffles off to the spare bedroom or sofa in the middle of the night in search of a good night’s sleep.
The partner who snores often feels guilty, ashamed, and helpless about causing their partner so much stress.
Many couples opt to sleep apart, and while that may work well for some couples, other couples find that it interferes with emotional and sexual intimacy, leading to further resentment.
4. Snoring in children is rare, although kids with large tonsils and adenoids are prone to snoring. A deviated septum and obstructive sleep apnea are problems that aren’t limited to adults; these issues can also cause snoring in kids.
About 3% of kids have sleep apnea. Children also may snore when they have congestion caused by allergies, a cold, or a respiratory infection.
5. People who are overweight are more likely to snore than people of average weight. Interestingly, snoring and sleep apnea can also cause people to make choices that can lead to being overweight. Since snoring results in a poor quality of sleep, people who snore tend to feel tired all the time and make food or exercise decisions based on that fatigue.
Luckily, losing only 10-15% of a person’s weight can result in half the symptoms of snoring and sleep apnea. Further weight loss leads to further symptoms reduction.
Snoring Facts: 6-10
6. When you fall asleep, the muscles in your throat, tongue, and mouth relax. This can cause soft tissue to block part of your airway and vibrate, which results in the snoring sound since there is more tissue in your airway rubbing against other tissue to cause the vibrations.
7. Drinking alcohol can cause snoring because it relaxes your muscles, leading to more resistance in your airway. Additionally, alcohol causes you to become dehydrated, and having a dry mouth and nasal passageways can increase the likelihood of snoring.
8. Not getting enough sleep can lead to increased snoring.
9. Several different anatomy problems can cause snoring, including a deviated septum (crooked tissue between your nostrils); a thick, low soft palate; an elongated uvula (the thing that dangles in the back of your throat); and extra tissue in the back of the throat that’s the result of being overweight.
10. Sleeping on your back is more likely to cause snoring than any other sleep position. There are several reasons for this. When you’re lying on your back, your airway is more prone to collapse. There’s also the weight of your neck or chest pressing down on your airway. Gravity also tends to shift your soft tissues down into your airway when you sleep on your back.
Snoring Facts: 11-15
11. Snoring can cause a lot of complications, especially if the snoring is a symptom of obstructive sleep apnea.
12. Since snoring means you aren’t sleeping well or getting enough air while you sleep, you may experience complications related to a lack of sleep such as sleepiness, irritability, and trouble concentrating.
13. People with sleep apnea, a common cause of snoring, are 2.5 times more likely to get into car accidents than other drivers. Drowsy driving is estimated to be responsible for 328,000 motor vehicle accidents and 6,400 fatal crashes in the United States every year. The good news is that treating sleep apnea with a CPAP machine for at least 4 hours every night can reduce this likelihood by 70%.
14. Those who snore have a higher risk of developing health problems like heart conditions, high blood pressure, and stroke. That’s because the person who is snoring isn’t receiving enough oxygen while they sleep. A lack of oxygen can affect all the cells in your body and is especially hard on the heart.
15. Snoring isn’t always permanent. Snoring can be the result of congestion caused by a cold, allergies, or the flu. Taking decongestants (like Sudafed) or antihistamines (like Benadryl) can help relieve congestion and reduce snoring. Using a humidifier can also help relieve dryness that can contribute to snoring.
Snoring Facts: 16-20
16. Around half of all people who snore, including approximately 25 million Americans, suffer from obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). Sleep apnea is a condition that causes people to breathe shallowly or stop breathing while they’re sleeping. People with sleep apnea may stop breathing for more than 10 seconds multiple times throughout the night.
17. Almost all people who have sleep apnea will snore, but not everybody who snores has sleep apnea. Sleep apnea is characterized by the stopping of breathing during the night, which doesn’t happen to all people who snore. If you don’t have a sleep partner to let you know whether or not you stop breathing during the night, one symptom you may notice is waking up choking or gasping for air.
18. Symptoms of sleep apnea include loud snoring, waking up gasping for air or choking, breathing that stops during sleep, fatigue, waking up with a sore throat or dry mouth, having a headache when you wake up, frequent urination at night, irritability, mood changes, difficulty concentrating, and cardiac problems like high blood pressure or stroke.
19. Sleep apnea causes you to wake frequently, even if you don’t realize it, which leads to chronic sleep deprivation and the resulting problems associated with sleep loss. Symptoms of the sleep deprivation that may accompany snoring include moodiness, fatigue, yawning, depressed mood, irritability, trouble learning, difficulty concentrating, forgetfulness, clumsiness, lack of motivation, reduced sex drive, and increased appetite with carbohydrate cravings.
20. Untreated sleep apnea is very dangerous and can lead to a wide variety of problems including daytime drowsiness, weight gain, memory loss, high blood pressure, stroke, heart attack, diabetes, atrial fibrillation, congestive heart failure, cancer, and sudden death.
Infographic source Sleepyhood.com
Snoring Facts: 21-25
21. Treatment for snoring may depend on the cause of the snoring. An otolaryngologist (ear, nose, and throat doctor) can look at your nose, throat, neck, mouth, and palate to identify structural problems that may be causing snoring. You may also need to do a sleep study for a doctor to identify whether or not you are suffering from obstructive sleep apnea.
22. Snoring that is caused by severe sleep apnea often needs to be treated using a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine. A CPAP machine stabilizes the air pressure in every part of your upper airway. While it’s quite effective, some people find the device too uncomfortable to tolerate and need to seek out other treatment options.
23. For less severe sleep apnea, a custom-fit mouth guard can make an effective anti-snoring device. These mouth guards work by pulling your jaw forward while you sleep, which can help prevent your tongue from relaxing into your airway and causing an obstruction. While these mouthguards work for a lot of people, they can cause side effects like jaw soreness, altered bite, and drooling.
24. Losing weight can help stop snoring that’s caused by obesity. That’s because extra weight places pressure on your neck, compromising your airway. Even losing 10-15% of your body weight can reduce snoring by as much as half.
25. If alcohol is the main cause of your snoring, you might consider not drinking so close to your bedtime in order to stop snoring. Drinking more water may also help reduce the symptoms of dehydration caused by alcohol that can contribute to snoring. Quitting smoking can also reduce snoring.
Snoring Facts: 26-30
26. For snoring that isn’t caused by sleep apnea, nasal strips may open up your nasal passages and help you to stop snoring.
27. Sleeping on your side instead of your back can reduce snoring. If you must sleep on your back, raise the head of your bed by about 4 inches to help reduce the chances of you snoring.
28. You can reduce your risk of snoring when you’re sick by taking decongestants (like Sudafed) or antihistamines (like Benadryl). Using a humidifier can also reduce air dryness that can cause snoring.
29. Avoid losing sleep to help prevent snoring. Adults should get at least 7 hours of sleep each night. Less than that can lead to snoring as well as a variety of other symptoms.
30. A person may require surgery for severe sleep apnea if they don’t feel they get enough help from a CPAP machine or have trouble being compliant with using it. Several different types of surgeries may help improve snoring and sleep apnea.
Snoring Facts: 31-35
31. There are several different types of surgery available to help relieve snoring or cure sleep apnea. Your doctor or otolaryngologist (ear, nose, and throat doctor) will be able to recommend the best surgery for your type of snoring or sleep apnea.
32. Uvulopalatopharyngoplasty (UPPP) involves removing the uvula (the piece of tissue that dangles in the back of your throat) and some soft palate tissue to open up the airway. Any tissue remaining stiffens as it heals, leaving less soft tissue to vibrate and cause snoring.
33. A thermal ablation procedure can get rid of tissue bulk on the inside of the nose, the soft palate, or the base of the tongue. Several treatments may be required, but it’s effective for both snoring and sleep apnea.
34. It’s possible to stiffen the soft palate by inserting rods or injecting an irritating substance near the uvula. This is useful if the soft palate is the primary cause of snoring or sleep apnea.
35. “Hypoglossal nerve stimulator” technology involves putting in a tongue pacemaker to stiffen and move the tongue forward during sleep. This surgery may be useful for people who benefit from a mandibular adjustment device (MAD) but have trouble using them or are looking for a more permanent option.
Snoring Facts: 36-40
36. Men are at a higher risk of snoring than women. You’re also more likely to snore the older you get.
37. Those with a family history of sleep apnea are more likely to snore than those who don’t.
38. Having a narrowed airway or nasal problems can make you more susceptible to snoring. An otolaryngologist (ear, nose, and throat doctor) can determine whether you have structural problems that are causing your snoring.
39. Drinking alcohol makes you more likely to snore. Cigarette smoking also contributes to snoring.
40. Being overweight puts you at a higher risk of snoring than being average weight because there is extra pressure on your neck and throat.
Snoring Facts: 41-45
41. Snoring itself is actually benign and harmless, but it indicates several other disorders. Snoring is very common, but it is something that is not normal.
42. Snoring actually indicates a group of disorders. This group is together termed as ‘sleep disordered breathing’.
43. Snoring can also indicate a serious disease known as OSA or Obstructed Sleep Apnea. OSA is pretty serious. At night when someone sleeps, there may be episodes when the airway mostly at the throat’s back is obstructed. This is when breathing stops for a period of about 10 seconds and then breathing is resumed. OSA can happen several hundred times in a single night’s sleep.
44. Snoring does not necessarily indicate OSA but it can lead to OSA. During snoring, the tissues that vibrate can swell up. This will in turn block the airway and lead to OSA episodes.
45. There is something called SUS or socially unacceptable snoring. It actually refers to loud snoring which is loud enough to prevent the bed partner or roommate of the snorer from sleeping.
Snoring Facts: 46-50
46. SUS is actually one reason for long term relationship failure and marriage failure in many cases.
47. In 2002, a stud was conducted in which it was concluded that snoring may lead to development of Type 2 Diabetes. However, the study did mention that snoring family diabetes history or the body weight of a person.
48. People who snore regularly are at 5 times more increased risk of developing hypertension, stroke and cardiac diseases compared to people who snore occasionally.
49. Though snoring has nothing to do with a family’s diabetes history, it is actually hereditary. People can bequeath this amazing and disturbing ability from their parents.
50. People who snore loudly are more likely to be overweight. It is more likely but not necessary.
Snoring Facts: 51-55
51. Snoring sound is equivalent to the sound created by pneumatic drill. The sound ranges between 50 and 100dB.
52. 3 out of every 10 women snore. For men, the number is 4 out of 10. Both in men and women, snoring increases the chances of heart attack by 34% and that of stroke by 67%.
53. When throat muscles become excessively relaxed, it can lead to snoring. Sedatives, drugs and alcohol are usually the ones that carry the blame. These substances can either lead to the pulling back of the tongue in the throat or can lead to lax muscles or both. Whatever the case be, it will lead to snoring.
54. Nasal congestion caused by allergies and cold can also lead to snoring. Such conditions lead to vacuum creation in the throat and thereby increases airflow, which in turn leads to snoring.
55. Tumors and/or cysts in throats can lead to snoring.
Snoring Facts: 56-60
56. Deviated septum or other structural deformities of the nose can also lead to snoring.
57. Snoring can be treated through surgery. Uvulopalatopharyngoplasty is a surgery procedure that is used for snoring treatment. In this method, tissues are removed from the airway which widens the airway. This is a very invasive surgery and can lead to unwanted side effects like formation of scar tissue and severe sleep apnea.
58. If obstructed nasal passage is causing snoring, it can be cured by using nasal strips. The strips are put on the nasal bridge. It appears as if an adhesive bandage has been placed on the bridge. Nasal strips clear nasal passages and stop snoring.
59. People become more susceptible to snoring as they age. Irrespective of their age, people cannot really hear themselves snoring and there is absolutely no way of finding why so!
60. Slight adjustments of the bed can actually prevent snoring. Elevating the bed head by about 10 to 41 centimeters can prevent the tongue from falling back in the throat, and thus prevent snoring.