Snoring and Sleep Apnoea

Snoring and Sleep Apnoea

Snoring is a well recognised problem not just for the individual involved but also husbands, wives, partners and sometimes children sleeping nearby. It not only causes a poor night’s sleep and tiredness during the day for the person concerned, but puts strain on relationships within the family. The most common causes of snoring include being overweight, drinking alcohol, smoking or getting older. Occasionally other factors such as your own physiology, sleeping position, large tonsils and adenoids (particularly in children) or nose blockage can also contribute to snoring.

The blockage in breathing causing the snoring can be severe enough to cause the person to stop breathing for a period of time. The oxygen levels then may reduce and this is known as sleep apnoea. This can have worse consequences for the quality of sleep and also puts strain on a person’s heart and respiratory system. It is important to identify the presence and severity of sleep apnoea so that this can be treated. This can be arranged during a consultation and assessment in clinic.

Treatment for snoring

During your initial consultation we will perform a thorough assessment of the various levels of airway obstruction so that a treatment plan can be made together with the potential risks involved. There are many methods of treatment available. Depending on the cause of your snoring we may suggest a combination of treatments and in some cases surgery may be recommended. One of the main causes of snoring and sleep apnoea is a high Body Mass Index (BMI); a ratio of a person’s height and weight. A high BMI suggests that a person is more heavy for their height. Weight loss is recommended before treatments such as surgery can be considered.

Adult Snoring Surgery

The type of surgery offered will depend on the level of obstruction that has been identified in the clinic. Surgery within the nose such as a septoplasty or septorhinoplasty may create an improved nasal airflow. Removing the tonsils during a tonsillectomy and surgery on the soft palate may create more space at the back of the throat. The various options and combinations will be discussed together with the potential risks before any surgery is carried out.