A bunch of people snores and many snorers also have sleep apnea. However, there are some common misconceptions about these two conditions that many individuals and even some doctors continue to perpetuate.
5 misconceptions about snoring and sleep apnea
1. Sleep apnea happens only to older, overweight, snoring men with large necks.
Although the stereotypical description does fit people at the end of the spectrum, we now know that even young, skinny women that don’t snore can have significant obstructive sleep apnea. Sleep apnea begins with mandible structure narrowing and later involves obesity. It is ruled that 90% of women with this condition not be diagnosed. Untreated, it can cause or aggravate weight gain, depression, anxiety, diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, heart attack, and stroke.
2. It is better to sleep facing up.
For some people, sleeping on their back is typical, but many people prefer to sleep on their sides or to face down. They need to rest in this position for a valid reason: Their tongues fall back due to gravity in a deep sleep with added tissue relaxation leading to frequent pauses while breathing. Dermatologists tell women not to sleep on their stomachs, to prevent facial wrinkles. However, this will worsen wrinkles since you will not sleep well at all.
3. I do not snore, or I do not have apnea. I feel fine.
There’s no way of proving that you do not snore or don’t have sleep apnea without having a sleep study performed. Not even spouses can tell. The majority of people pause breathing once in a while.
Also, if you do not snore, you may not be breathing either. Some individuals stop breathing 50 to 70 times every hour and feel good. However, they are at increased risk for heart disease, heart attack, or stroke.
4. If I lose weight, I will cure myself of sleep apnea.
Sometimes. It is worth trying, but in general, it is tough to lose weight if you have sleep apnea. This is since poor sleep exacerbates weight gain as well as to increase your appetite. Once you are sleeping better, it will be easier to lose weight. It is not enough just to tell people to sleep more.
5. Snoring comes from the nose, so if I unclog my nose, my snoring will stop.
Having a congested nose can aggravate snoring and sleep apnea, but in general, it is not the cause. A recent study revealed that experiencing nasal surgery for breathing problems healed sleep apnea in only 10% of patients. Snoring vibrations are coming from the soft palate, which is worst by having a small jaw and the tongue falling back. It is an intricate relation between the nose, the palate, and the tongue.
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The bottom line is, if you snore, you have a significant chance of suffering from undiagnosed obstructive sleep apnea. Even if an over the counter snore aids seem to alleviate the problem, usually snoring comes back. If you have any of the complications such as depression, anxiety, diabetes, heart disease, obesity or frequent urination, then there’s, even more of a reason to get checked.
You can watch a video about the misconceptions of snoring.