Has your partner or a family member ever commented about your snoring? Or perhaps you find yourself having nights of interrupted sleep due to uncontrollable snoring habits. If so, you are not the only one. Snoring is a common phenomenon that affects many around the world, requiring the need for snoring treatment. In fact, Singapore has been ranked the third noisiest snoring city according to a UK survey. These results were derived using 50 search terms related to the topic of snoring and how often they were searched over a 12-month period in each location. This then begets the question – how exactly does snoring occur?
Snoring occurs when air cannot pass through the mouth or nose easily. Soft tissues in the mouth, nose, and throat vibrate when air is forced through an obstructed area. This causes vibrations that produce a rattling, snorting or grumbling sound we often hear when someone snores. Snoring not only affects the person who suffers from it but also others who have to sleep around that individual. Due to this, people who snore tend to deal with embarrassment and worry when it comes to sleeping with others around. In this article, we explore some of the common reasons that cause snoring and snoring treatment options.
Though many are unaware, sleep position can contribute to snoring. Laying on your back increases the likelihood as gravity pulls the tissues surrounding your airway downward. This makes the airway narrower and results in snoring. Laying on your side is one of the methods you can try to reduce the frequency and intensity of snoring. Some patients may opt for positional therapy, which helps sleepers avoid sleeping on their backs. This includes the use of positional alarms, modified night shirts and lateral pillows that can help keep the head to the side. Should these approaches fail and snoring continues, visit an ENT doctor in Singapore to help with your snoring habits and provide you with the most suitable treatment.
Any irritation or inflammation of the nasal tissues can lead to nasal congestion. Colds, flus, sinus infections, and allergies are common causes. In some cases, a dry air environment and deviated septum can result in nasal congestions as well. These conditions restrict the flow of air through the nasal airway, thus, increasing the potentiality of snoring. In the long run, nasal congestion can become chronic and lead to habitual snoring. Researchers found that those who reported having nasal congestion at night were three times more likely to snore habitually. In chronic congested individuals, nasal decongestants or nasal steroids may be used as a snoring treatment in Singapore.
Snoring can be caused by obesity because the presence of excess neck fat compresses the upper airway when you lie down. In addition, abdominal fat also pushes your diaphragm up while you sleep and compresses the ribcage. This puts greater pressure on your lungs and minimises airflow through your airways. Though snoring can be caused by obesity, obesity can be caused by snoring as well, and this vicious cycle makes it difficult to overcome both issues.
Often, we associate obesity with poor diet and exercise; little do we know, snoring plays a part in that. Think about it, snoring leads to a poor night’s rest, which leaves us feeling tired and sleepy in the morning. To combat this, we might turn to sugary food and drinks to keep us awake. Moreover, the fatigue of not having a good night’s sleep discourages the desire to exercise regularly too. Such habits give rise to obesity and hence, snoring. Losing weight not only reduces your risk of snoring, but also improves your overall health. Alternatively you can get snoring treatment from an ENT doctor in Singapore first, then work towards building a healthier lifestyle.
With a deeper understanding of the reasons that cause snoring, the better we can discover ways to mitigate this challenge. Should you still experience snoring after assessing different solutions on your own, it is highly recommended to visit an ENT doctor in Singapore to evaluate your condition and provide you with an appropriate snoring treatment solution.
Dr Dennis Chua is an ENT specialist with experience treating patients with sleep apnoea and snoring conditions. Contact us today for more information.