Why do I snore?

Snoring is an air turbulence issue; when our nasal passages are narrowed, the air moves faster in the throat and triggers the snoring process. In this video, I will explain the biology of snoring and how to avoid it. 
Craig L. Schwimmer, MD
Ear, Nose & Throat (Otolaryngology)
You snore because the soft tissue in your throat is vibrating while you breathe at night. The muscles in the airway relax during sleep, making the tissue lining the airway "floppier". As you breathe, this "floppy" tissue tends to vibrate, creating the sounds of snoring. If this tissue vibrates so much that it actually blocks your airway and repeatedly prevents you from breathing, you have obstructive sleep apnea. While snoring is thought of as a mere nuisance, obstructive sleep apnea is a serious medical condition that should be treated.

Snoring is an inconvenient problem - like smelly feet, sweaty palms, and allergies. Some people sufferfrom the malady while others never experience it at all. Up to 20 percent of the population experiences problems with snoring. The rest of the population has no problem with it - unless they are married to someone in the 20 percent.

Snoring is most simply an anatomy problem involving soft tissue in the back of the throat. This same tissue, by the way, allows you to swallow, gargle and - on a dare - talk like Donald Duck. Too much of this tissue causes snoring. This tissue (which includes the soft palate, uvula and tonsils) relaxes then starts to vibrate against the back of the throat while breathing. This vibration can create quite a bit of noise. The noise is like a balloon making sounds when you let the air out of it.

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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.