A narrowing of the airways during sleep may cause airflow turbulence and soft palate vibration that result in snoring. More than a quarter of the population snores occasionally or habitually; and it’s usually worse while supine. It can of course be very annoying for bed partners.
Sometimes snoring has no medical implications and does not impact the sleep quality of the person who snores. (On the other hand, bed partners may suffer serious sleep disruptions). This is known as primary snoring. Snoring can also be a first sign of obstructive sleep apnea. It may be treatable after determining that it is not associated with apnea.
You should see your doctor about snoring if you experience any of the following symptoms:
- You wake up suddenly while gasping or snorting; and fall back asleep instantaneously.
- Your snoring is so loud that it annoys your bed partner and he/she can’t sleep.
- Your mouth or throat is dry and painful at night.
- You wake up in the morning and feel your sleep was not refreshing.