Why Have I Started Snoring?

Snoring is a common condition that many people encounter, but understanding why it suddenly starts can be puzzling and concerning. If you’ve recently begun to snore, there are various factors and health considerations to explore. This article delves into the common causes of snoring, how it impacts health, and when to seek medical advice, with a focus on insights and resources relevant to New Zealand.

What Causes Snoring?

Snoring occurs when the flow of air through the mouth and nose is partially obstructed during sleep. Several factors can contribute to this:

1. Physical Characteristics

The anatomy of your mouth and sinuses can affect your airflow. A low, thick soft palate, enlarged adenoids, tonsils, or a long uvula can narrow the airway. Being overweight can also lead to snoring by adding extra tissues in the back of your throat.

2. Age

As you age, your throat becomes narrower, and the muscle tone in your throat decreases. This can make it more likely for you to snore as you get older.

3. Lifestyle Factors

Lifestyle choices play a significant role in snoring. Alcohol consumption, smoking, and certain medications can increase muscle relaxation leading to more snoring.

4. Sleep Position

Sleeping on your back often causes the tongue to move to the back of the throat, which partly blocks airflow and leads to snoring.

5. Nasal Problems

Chronic nasal congestion or a deviated septum can also cause or worsen snoring.

6. Sleep Deprivation

Not getting enough sleep can lead to further throat relaxation.

Health Impacts of Snoring

Snoring can be more than just a nuisance; it can have significant health implications:

● Sleep Apnea: This serious sleep disorder involves repeated breathing interruptions during sleep, which can increase the risk of heart disease and stroke.

● Poor Night's Sleep: Snoring can disrupt the quality of your sleep leading to daytime fatigue, irritability, and increased health problems.

● Effect on Partners: Snoring can also negatively impact the sleep quality of a partner or roommate, potentially straining relationships.

When to Seek Medical Advice

It’s important to consult with a healthcare provider if your snoring is loud enough to disturb your sleep or that of others. Also, seek medical advice if you experience any of the following:

● Pauses in breathing during sleep

● Excessive daytime drowsiness

● Difficulty concentrating

● Morning headaches

● Sore throat upon awakening

Treatment and Management

The treatment for snoring varies depending on the underlying cause. Some common treatments include:

● Lifestyle Changes: Reducing alcohol consumption, losing weight, and quitting smoking.

● Anti Snoring Devices: There are various devices available, including nasal strips and mouth guards, which help keep the airways open.

● Surgery: In severe cases, surgical procedures might be necessary to remove excess tissue or correct abnormalities.

● Positional Therapy: Changing your sleep position can help alleviate snoring.

Resources in New Zealand

For New Zealanders looking for support and more information, the following resources can be invaluable:

● Sleep Well Clinic: Offers services across New Zealand for sleep testing and treatment of sleep disorders including snoring (Sleep Well Clinic).

● Health Navigator NZ: Provides health information vetted by NZ medical professionals and has a helpful section on snoring and sleep disorders (Health Navigator NZ).

Understanding why you have started snoring is crucial for both your health and your quality of life. Considering the factors listed above, adopting healthier lifestyle habits, and consulting with healthcare providers can help you find the right treatment. With the right approach, you can ensure that both you and your loved ones can look forward to a quieter, more restful night’s sleep.

Snorblok has over 15 years experience in providing a range of market place tried and proven sleep improvement solutions to help snoring sufferers. This includes anti snoring mouth guards (MADs), and nasal dilators, which have proven effective for many customers.