What Are the Risks of Snoring?


Recent studies have shown that snorers not only take their partners’ sleep but that they are at risk of developing heart disease. Evaluate your situation.

There are few situations more uncomfortable than sharing the room with a person who snores. The victims of a snorer complain that falling asleep with these noises is almost impossible. But recent studies indicate that the worst part is not for those who have to endure this unbearable sound, but for the one who produces it. People who snore can suffer from sleep apnea, a medical condition by which people stop breathing while they sleep.

It is little known, but studies indicate that it is increasing, especially in men, due to the increase in obesity. It is also known that not treating it can lead to complications such as depression and cardiovascular problems.

Not all patients who snore suffer from apneas, but all patients who suffer from sleep apnea snore. When the person is asleep, the weight of the abdomen presses on the chest, which causes the flow of air to be obstructed. The little that enters is the cause of the snoring, but the lack of air in the lungs causes that the brain does not receive enough oxygen and that the person wakes up. Also, the muscles that keep the airway open lose tone, and before the pressure exerted on the neck, a more significant obstruction takes place. Age is another significant risk factor. Those over 65 have three times more risk of developing apneas.

This alteration in ventilation makes sleep not restorative. Patients get up in the morning with headaches and have difficulty concentrating on daily activities because they are sleepy. But there the problems do not stop. Apneas make the heart more substantial, which can lead to cardiac arrhythmias and difficulty in pumping blood. Over time these patients may suffer from high blood pressure, heart attacks and thrombosis.

That is why it is essential to pay attention to snorers and to attend a medical consultation. When people share a bed it is easy to notice this anomaly; the tricky thing is if they sleep alone because it is not possible to determine if they snore or not. This is why doctors use a series of questions to find out how easy the sleep is.

An example is the Epworth scale, which uses a questionnaire investigates how often the patient falls asleep in certain situations such as driving, watching television, or conversing with someone.

This guides the diagnosis.

When there is a clinical suspicion, and the result of the scales is positive, it is essential to go to the doctor to define the diagnosis with a sleep study (polysomnography), which evaluates the presence of apneas and the oxygenation of the blood while asleep.

The treatment depends on the severity of the disease. When the picture is mild, it is recommended to lose weight, try to sleep on the side and not face up and avoid alcoholic beverages before sleeping. In the most severe cases, an air pressure mask that opens the upper airway should be used. Doctors refer to this device as CPAP and efficiently decreases apneas and normalize oxygen saturation.

The problems of apneas are as common as people who snore. If your partner does not let you sleep, do not change rooms; request a medical assessment because with proper treatment the sequelae of SAHOS can be prevented and controlled. This improves your health and also your life as a couple.

‘Apnea, me?’

This simple question will help you to know if you suffer from this disease. How often do you fall asleep in the following situations? Even if you have not recently done any of the activities listed below, try to imagine to what extent they would affect you.

0 = Has never been asleep 1 = Little chance of falling asleep 2 = Moderate possibility of falling asleep 3 = High possibility of falling asleep

a. Sitting and reading. b. Watching TV. c. Sitting, inactive in a show (theater …) d. By car, as co-pilot of a one-hour tripe. e. Lying in the middle of the afternoon. f. Sitting and chatting with someone g. Seated after the meal (without alcohol) h. In your car, when you stop for a few minutes due to traffic

Add the points and guide yourself to these results:

  • Between 0 and 6: you do not have daytime sleepiness, it is within limits considered normal.
  • Between 7 and 13: have slight daytime sleepiness. If it increases or persists more than a year, consults the doctor.
  • Between 14 and 19: has moderate daytime sleepiness. Consult your doctor.
  • Between 20 and 24: your daytime sleepiness is severe. Consult your doctor quickly.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *