Snoring: Causes & Treatments
Snoring is caused when the tissues in your throat vibrate as air moves in and out of your mouth while you sleep. If you’ve been told this is a nightly occurrence for you, your snoring could be a sign that you have a condition called sleep apnea. This is a condition where your throat muscles are relaxing as you sleep, closing your airways so you can’t breathe unless your brain wakes you up briefly to engage the throat muscles.
Other causes of snoring include:
- Being overweight: excessive throat tissues may narrow your airways
- Mouth anatomy: the uvula (hanging tissue in the back of your throat) is oversized, thereby obstructing the airway
- Deviated septum: crooked bone and cartilage that runs between your nostrils can cause one or both nasal passages to become narrow
- Overconsumption of alcohol: throat muscles relax if you have too much alcohol in your system
- Sinusitis: infected, inflamed tissue that lines the sinuses accompanied with thick mucus
- Back sleeping: gravity can cause your throat to narrow if you sleep on your back
Symptoms of Snoring / Sleep Apnea
If you have any of these symptoms, we encourage you to schedule an appointment with our ear, nose and throat doctors in Phoenix.
- Gasping for breath during the night
- Sore throat
- Restless sleep
- Dry mouth
- Lack of concentration
Our Treatments for Snoring
Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) therapy is administered by wearing a mask as you sleep. The mask is connected to a machine that delivers constant air pressure so your throat muscles do not relax and close. This treatment can be frustrating and difficult to tolerate at first, but as patients get used to the treatment, they can start to feel better overall.
Inspire® Upper Airway Stimulation
If you are unable to tolerate the CPAP machine, we may recommend Inspire® Upper Airway Stimulation therapy for some sleep apnea patients. This is an FDA-approved therapy for obstructive sleep apnea. Inspire therapy involves the surgical implantation of 3 devices that work inside your body to deliver mild stimulation to airway muscles. Patients are in control of this system. When turned on at night, the system senses your breathing and stimulates the base of the tongue and tissue in the throat in order to keep the airway open as you sleep – without masks and hoses connected to a machine.
You Have Questions: We Have Answers
When you come in for your appointment, we’ll cover commonly asked questions about sleep problems. We are trained to help answer such questions as:
- Why do I snore?
- Is snoring a serious problem?
- Why do I feel so tired during the days?
- Does my weight affect snoring?
- And many more
More importantly, we can offer treatments for relief.
Our team at Biltmore ENT is ready to help you find out if we can reduce your snoring in Phoenix. Contact our office today at (602) 956-1250 or click here to request an appointment.