(708) 383-0330

If you snore, you may wonder if sleep apnea is to blame. But are sleep apnea and snoring related? The short answer is “sometimes.” While many once assumed a connection between 

snoring and sleep apnea, recent studies show that the two do not always go hand-in-hand. So, how can you know if your snoring is related to sleep apnea? 

The first step is to talk to your healthcare providers, especially your dentist. Your dentist plays an essential role in sleep apnea treatment, so don’t hesitate to call (708)383-0330 now and schedule your next appointment with Dr. Wegner at Town & Country Dental. We are ready to help you overcome the adverse effects of sleep apnea so you can enjoy a more restful night’s sleep and get back to a healthier, happier life.

Now, let’s explore the potential connections between snoring and sleep apnea. 

What Is Sleep Apnea? 

Sleep apnea is a common disorder characterized by shallow breathing or pauses in breath during sleep. These pauses can happen throughout the night and last between ten seconds and a minute. While there are several types of sleep apnea, obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) is the most common and can be treated by Dr. Wegner. 

How Sleep Apnea Can Cause Snoring 

Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) happens when the soft tissues at the back of the throat relax excessively, blocking air passage to the lungs. Snoring is the sound of air pushing through these narrowed airways. 

Sleep Apnea Without The Snoring 

A 2019 study found that while “snoring is perceived to be directly proportional to sleep apnea severity,” snoring alone is likely “of limited usefulness in assessing sleep apnea presence and severity.” In other words, just because you snore loudly doesn’t necessarily mean that you have severe sleep apnea. And conversely, you may have sleep apnea even if you don’t snore loudly. That’s why involving your doctors in assessing these symptoms is essential. Your healthcare team can analyze your situation and help you determine the cause of snoring or poor-quality sleep.

Snoring For Other Reasons Than Sleep Apnea

While snoring is often a symptom of obstructive sleep apnea, there could be other factors causing you to snore, such as: 

  • The shape of your jaw, pallet, tongue, or neck
  • Obesity
  • Large tonsils or adenoids
  • Sleeping on your back

However, If you do have obstructive sleep apnea, the above factors could exacerbate your OSA symptoms. 

Treatments for Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea treatments involve various health and lifestyle factors, as well as technological or surgical interventions. For example, weight loss and abstaining from alcohol have been known to reduce the severity of sleep apnea symptoms. Additionally, OSA symptoms can be treated with a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine or bilevel CPAP (BiPAP) machine. 

Some patients benefit from oral devices worn at night, similar to a mouthguard. These devices help to keep airways open by repositioning the jaw and tongue during sleep. Call Dr. Wegner’s team today at (708)383-0330 or schedule an appointment on our website to find out if you could benefit from such a device.

We are ready to help you overcome snoring and sleep apnea, so you can sleep better and improve your overall quality of life.