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Does it really matter that we snore?


28-May-2009

If you live alone, or if your partner says that your snoring doesn't bother her then you could be forgiven for thinking that your snoring isn't really a problem at all. Maybe it's not a problem now, but it could soon develop into more of an issue.

Apart from the nuisance and lack of sleep you cause for those around you there could well be more serious health effects that affect you directly.

Some negative health effects of snoring

Loss of sleep

This is the most obvious problem and can affect both you and your partner. Though you can't control your snoring, the noise can be a nuisance that causes stress and may be the cause of arguments.

Loss of sleep often results in tired, grumpy behaviour the next day and can have more serious implications if it occurs night and night over a longer period of time.

Excessive daytime sleepiness and lack of productivity

Even if you don't wake up fully during the night, a strong snore may mean a reduced quality of sleep that results in excessive sleepiness the next day. If you're continually tired then chances are you'll struggle to be productive throughout the day.

Irritability and antisocial behaviour

Without a good night's sleep you'll be more impatient and irritated by bright lights, loud sounds, and perhaps even "pestering" conversation.

Decreased libido

Another side-effect of feeling continuously tired - chances are when you get to bed you're much more interested in dropping off to sleep than in night time adventures.

Psychological damage

A consistantly low quality of sleep can have severe effects upon a person's emotional wellbeing, with an increased chance of depression developing. The psychological damage is likely to be even more severe if snoring is combined with sleep apneas.

heart attack / stroke risk

An increasing body of research has shown there to be a link between snoring and sleep apnaeas, heart attacks, and strokes, especially where the snoring is of the loud variety.

What to do about it

In many cases snoring can be reduced or eliminated, and it may be as easy as just losing a bit of weight. There are many possible cures depending on the exact reasons for your snoring so a good first step would be to meet with a specialist at a sleep or snoring clinic.

If you're a consistant, loud snorer then it would be wise to seek help sooner than later to reduce the chances of having any serious health complications down the line.

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