The more you understand your body and how it functions, the better equipped you'll be at taking care of yourself to achieve optimal health. We've included the Patient Education section on our website to provide you with valuable, practical wellness information which you can incorporate into your lifestyle to improve the quality of your life. We hope you will turn to these pages whenever you have a question about health related issues and urge you to contact our practice at any time to make an appointment with one of our doctors.
The rattling sound we hear in people who snore is actually caused by the tissues in your throat, such as the soft palate and uvula, vibrating.
Some people, however, actually have a minor defect in their throat tissues. The defect prevents the proper amount of air from entering your windpipe. This condition is called sleep apnea. Obstructive sleep apnea is a more serious form of sleep apnea. People with chronic conditions like this often suffer from restless sleep, and can develop more serious conditions such as high blood pressure, heart arrhythmias, and even congestive heart failure.
Restricted airways in people with sleep apnea are caused by many things, such as an abnormally large uvula (the small finger-like projection hanging in the back of the throat), blocked nasal passages, a poorly developed lower jaw, and in more serious cases, polyps, cysts, or a deviated septum.
Recent research has shown that the brain plays a role in snoring. In addition to physical obstructions in the airway, distorted signals from the brain stem can cause a malfunction in the muscles that control breathing during sleep.