Getting proper ZZZs at night should not include actually hearing those Zs.
If you or a loved one is hearing snoring, that’s a problem – and not just because it can disrupt sleep. Snoring is a sign that your breathing is partially blocked when you’re sleeping.
The sound you hear occurs when the tissue at the top of your throat vibrates as air squeezes past it as you breathe. The greater the airway obstruction, the louder your snoring. That’s because air has to flow more forcefully to get through, increasing tissue vibration and the resulting snore.
Snoring that happens occasionally is usually nothing to worry about. However, if your snoring has become chronic, it may indicate a serious health condition requiring treatment such as obstructive sleep apnea. Chronic snoring may even thicken the carotid arteries and increase your risk of stroke.
At the Sleep Center at Georgetown ENT, we specialize in the treatment of sleep disorders, including snoring. Dr. Scott W. Franklin is board certified in both sleep medicine and ear, nose, and throat surgery – the best of both worlds when it comes to diagnosing and treating the cause of your snoring.
What Causes Snoring?
There are so many things that can cause snoring, ranging from simple and benign like your sleep position to complex and dangerous like sleep apnea. Common causes of snoring include:
After a thorough evaluation, Dr. Franklin may recommend additional imaging tests or a sleep test to identify the extent of the problem.
Treatment will depend on the cause of your snoring. For example, treating nasal congestion or sinus infections can effectively resolve your snoring. In many cases, lifestyle changes are recommended to help reduce snoring. This includes losing weight if overweight and avoiding alcohol, especially before bedtime.
Other snoring treatments include:
- Oral appliances advance your jaw to create more space at the back of the throat and help keep your airway clear.
- Nasal strips can help increase the size of your nasal passages while sleeping.
- Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) involves wearing a pressurized mask over the nose, which forces air through your airway. This may treat both snoring and obstructive sleep apnea.
- Radiofrequency ablation of the tongue and tissue at the back of the throat (uvula) is an in-office procedure that helps prevent the tongue from falling back and blocking the airway during sleep.
- Outpatient surgery, depending on the cause of snoring, may help. This may include a tonsillectomy, adenoidectomy, uvulopalatopharyngoplasty (to remove the uvula, which hangs down at the back of the throat), or nasal surgeries to correct a deviated septum or remove nasal polyps.
Snoring Treatment in Georgetown, TX
Chronic snoring is no joke. Make sure you’re properly evaluated by a sleep medicine specialist who is also an ear, nose, and throat (ENT) surgeon like Dr. Scott W. Franklin at the Sleep Center at Georgetown ENT in Texas. Call (512) 869-0604 or request a consultation now.