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How can snoring be dangerous to my health?

Craig L. Schwimmer, MD
Ear, Nose & Throat (Otolaryngology)
Snoring impairs the health of your bed partner by causing sleep loss. On average, sleeping with a snorer costs your partner an hour of sleep per night. This sleep deprivation causes emotional, physical and psychological damage. In addition, recent evidence suggests that snoring, even in the absence of sleep apnea, increases your risk of early death!

Snoring can be a sign of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), a common sleep disorder. People with OSA briefly stop breathing multiple times during the night when the muscles in the back of the throat fail to keep their airway open. This results in fragmented, poor sleep, as well as low blood oxygen levels. OSA has been associated with an increased risk for myriad health problems, including hypertension, heart disease, mood and memory problems.

Not everyone who snores has OSA, but the link between the two is well documented, and research showing the strong association between snoring and cardiovascular problems continues to come out.

 


 

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.