It is generally made by vibration of surfaces together in the upper airway. Most snoring noise emanates from the soft palate, and is louder when the mouth is open. Other sites contributing may be the back of the tongue and the nose, and sometimes structures in the lower throat. Between 30 and 40% of the population snores, and it seems to be more common in men. As one gets older, snoring frequency and loudness increase owing to the reducing levels of "elastin" in aging tissues.
Some other factors are not easily solved such as small lower jaw, and some have large tonsils which may need to be removed to reduce the problem.
Bad snorers can wake very tired, or have daytime sleepiness. Snoring has also been implicated as an aggravating factor in other medical problems such as hypertension and depression. Fixing snoring does not necessarily solve these problems. Daytime sleepiness is often due to Obstructive Sleep Apnoea (O.S.A.), which is suggested by an Epworth Sleepiness Score of twelve or more.
Obstructive Sleep Apnoea is the cessation of breathing for a variable length of time in sleep.This is caused by obstruction to the airway with the tongue, and results in falling oxygen levels. This is often associated with a number of health problems, and can be diagnosed with "Sleep Study". This condition is often the source of most concern to the partner, and may occur in as many as 10% of adults. Running out of oxygen many times a night is clearly a health risk, especially in the case of those with heart attack risk, or stroke risk. Respiratory Medical Specialists will run a "sleep study" to assess the significance of this problem. Continuous Positive Airways Pressure (CPAP) is a proven and successful treatment for this. Having our snoring surgery "SnoreOp" will very often reduce the sleepiness as measured by the Epworth Sleepiness Scale, meaning you can wake much more refreshed, and get much less tired during the days. An Epworth Sleepiness Score of more than twelve is likely to improve by more than seven points just by having a Snore-Op for your snoring, and we have recorded much bigger improvements in some clients.
These are quite varied, and really depend on where the snoring originates. This is determined by the examination of a doctor experienced in this field. Doctors trained in the "Snore-Op" method have had extra training in this examination and technique. Most people who present to the doctor with snoring have tried a range of treatments with limited success. Most methods have benefit for some patients and range from throat and nose sprays, nasal splints, jaw advancements splints, to minor and major surgical corrections. The New Zealand Consumer"ran an independent comparison of methods available, in 2003. After they had reviewed all the "over the counter" methods, their comment was there is little evidence that these things work" on snoring and and then went on to describe the four operations available then, namely: