Everyone probably knows someone who snores. Everyone at some point or another has wondered if they snore, or can remember a time when they’ve been elbowed or have elbowed someone who was snoring.
“It’s estimated that approximately 30% to 50% of the US population snore at one time or another ...” (AAOMS.org) while “[o]ne in five adults has at least mild sleep apnea and one in 15 adults has at least moderate sleep apnea. OSA [obstructive sleep apnea] also affects 1% to 3% of children."
Snorers are the brunt of teasing and jokes, but in many cases snoring is something that needs to be treated.
Snoring versus Sleep Apnea
Just because a person snores, doesn’t mean they have sleep apnea. But everyone who has sleep apnea snores.
Snoring happens when air is prevented from moving freely through your nose and mouth during sleep because of a narrowing of the airway, “either from poor sleep posture or abnormalities of the soft tissues in your throat” (Helpguide.org).
Sleep apnea is when a person stops breathing while snoring. “Sleep apnea is generally defined as the presence of more than 30 apneas during a seven hour sleep. In severe cases, periods of not breathing may last for as long as 60 to 90 seconds and may recur up to 500 times a night” (AAOMS).
Both snoring and sleep apnea can affect the quality of sleep for the snorer and their family, which can affect memory and work or school performance among other things, it is in the snorer’s best interest to use an anti-snoring device to restore the quiet in their house.
Types of Snoring Devices or Remedies
The type of anti-snoring device or remedy your family doctor or dentist might suggest all depends on what is actually causing the snoring. The goal of treatment is to keep the airway open or unobstructed so that air can flow properly through the mouth and nose.
“Overall, those with mild to severe OSA [obstructive sleep apnea] have a 52% chance of being able to control their sleep apnea using an appliance. OAs [oral appliances] are on the whole less effective than CPAP but may be better accepted by patients ...” (Sleep Journal).