Excessive snoring is a condition of loud breathing that occurs during sleep. It can be heard by other people near the snorer and may disrupt them. In addition to being disruptive, loud snoring can also lead to health problems, including headaches, a lack of energy, and poorer mental and emotional health. The main cause of excessive snoring is an obstruction in the breathing passage, which in turn can be caused by many different factors. Here are just a few of the reasons people can snore so loudly.
First, a narrow throat may be inherited. This can make it possible for snoring to run in families as a result of genetics. An individual with more body fat may also have a higher risk of snoring excessively. The extra fat that develops in the neck and throat can narrow the air passage, which results in snoring.
As people age, their tongue and throat muscles loosen up and become flabby. The tongue can fall back into the air passage at the top of the throat, causing a person to snore. Therefore, older individuals are more likely to snore loudly.
Men are more likely to snore than women- about 60% snore on a regular basis, as compared with 30% of women. This is because most men have narrower air passages in the neck and throat than women do.
Other rarer conditions and anomalies that can cause snoring include an enlarged tongue or flabby uvula. The soft palate, at the back of the mouth, may be longer than normal, and this can also lead to snoring. A crooked nasal septum or misaligned structure of the jaw may also be a factor. Any deformity in the neck or throat that narrows the air passages can lead to excessive snoring.
Allergies can also cause loud snoring. Common ailments such as hay fever or other allergic reactions that can result in a swollen throat may result in snoring. Other illnesses, such as colds, asthma, and sinus infections can block nasal passages, causing excessive snoring as well.
Smoking and drinking are also factors. Smoking irritates the throat, and alcohol consumption causes the muscles in the throat and tongue to relax, leading to a blocked air passage. Some medications, like sleeping pills and antihistamines, can also lead to excessive snoring in a similar way.
Finally, individual sleeping habits may cause loud snoring. People who sleep on their backs and incline their heads relax their muscles in the head and neck. This causes snoring because the airways are blocked.
Although excessive snoring is mainly caused by an obstruction in the breathing passages, there are a myriad of reasons why this occurs. Treatment for snoring will depend on what is causing the blockage.