THE PROBLEM OF SNORING
The problem of snoring is that most people don't think it's all that much of a problem. The word itself - snoring - is rather harmless sounding, really; and it's nowhere as terrifying as some angry medical words such as tumor or cirrhosis.
As a result, many people are quite skeptical when told that snoring is a severe physical and emotional health problem. If you might find yourself among these skeptics, or if you're just unsure of just how serious this problem of snoring is, then this article is for you.
Snoring: The Physical Problem of Snoring
Here's the list of physical problems associated with snoring which indicates what a serious health problem it actually is: Here are just a few of them
1. sleep apnea (described below)
2. heart disease
4. headaches throughout the day (due to poor quality sleep and poor airflow through trachea)
5. night sweats
7. swollen legs and arms (due to lack of oxygen flow)
8. an overall weakened immune system
9. Hearing loss (if snoring is very loud; remember, snoring can be as loud as a passing jet!)
In addition, most of us assume that snoring is associated with adulthood; and, as such, that the physical ailments noted above are limited to adults. This is not the case at all, since many children and adolescents snore (particularly those with related airflow inhibiting conditions, such as asthma).
Sleep Apnea: A Closer Look
Of all the snoring-related physical ailments noted above, arguably the most severe - and ironically least understood - is a condition called Sleep Apnea. These two words should be emblazoned in the minds of every snorer, and anyone who lives with or cares about the safety and well-being of a snorer.
The word apnea in the term Sleep Apnea derives from the Greek term for absence of breathing. That, in a nutshell, gives a sense of how dangerous Sleep Apnea can be; it literally refers to a condition where breathing stops during sleep.
Sleep Apnea is as serious problem of snoring.
Sleep Apnea and snoring are directly linked because during snoring the airway of the trachea is constantly subjected to repetitive collapse and obstruction; in fact, it is that collapse and obstruction that leads to the vibration that, ultimately, manifests itself as audible snoring. Sleep Apnea thus occurs when, due to that continuous collapse of the airway, breathing actually stops.
While death is obviously possible due to this obstruction of the airway (and subsequent lack of breathing), there are many very serious effects that, while not fatal, are most certainly severe.
Even when it is not fatal, Sleep Apnea deprives the body of essential oxygen; and hence, overall blood oxygen levels are reduced and concurrently, carbon dioxide levels rise. This can lead to toxic buildup that can cause heart disease, stroke, and brain damage.
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