When Snoring Gets Between You and Your Sleep

snoring-584x342pxI haven’t had a good night’s sleep in a while now. I’m starting to feel the effects of waking up during the night, unable to get back to sleep.

Jefferson experts say adults lack physical activity needed to easily and comfortably sleep. Do I need to exercise more? Or, is the temperature in my bedroom too cold, or my bed too hard?

No, I don’t think those are my problems. The only answer I can confidently come up with is my husband.

His snoring wakes me up constantly and while his late night nasal orchestrations aren’t a consistent problem, his “sounds of music” cause major problems for me – the one who can’t quickly roll over back to her sweet slumber.

But besides being annoyed, I’m worried. Does my husband have obstructive sleep apnea (OSA)? Snoring is, after all, a symptom of the sleep disorder, which can result in even greater problems such as stroke and heart disease.

“Most people who snore do not have OSA,” informs Dr. Karl Doghramji, director of the Jefferson Sleep Disorders Center. “However, most people with OSA do snore.”

If you’re like me and you have a partner who snores, Dr. Doghramji advises to look for the following warning signs of OSA:

  • Partner stops breathing or chokes during sleep
  • Partner wakes up with headaches
  • Extreme sleepiness during the day
  • Obesity
  • Very loud, constant snoring

If your partner experiences any of the above, make an appointment with a doctor to get tested for OSA.

In addition to observing the warning signs of OSA, your partner can also help to prevent general snoring not associated with OSA by doing the following:

  • Avoid alcohol and sedating drugs several hours before bedtime
  • Sleep with head elevated
  • Lose weight
  • Use earplugs (a golden answer for the non-snorer!)
  • Alternate sleeping arrangements (for extreme situations, sending the snorer to the couch or spare room may be necessary!)

And while men are often the culprits of snoring, Dr. Doghramji notes that 40 percent of women also snore. So ladies, make sure you don’t quickly dismiss your partner when they tell you about the raucous you make in your sleep.

For more information, or to make an appointment with a Jefferson sleep specialist, call 1-800-JEFF-NOW (1-800-533-3669) or use our online appointment request form.

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