When you snore, you probably don’t know that you’re doing it until your sleeping partner tells you about it. Therefore, it might not seem like it can have much of an effect on any other part of your life. However, if your snoring means that you suffer from obstructive sleep apnea, then there may be more to worry about than you realize. Sleep apnea means that your airway becomes clogged by oral tissues when you sleep, which is marked by loud, obtrusive snoring. Besides the disturbance to those who sleep under the same roof, there are several other reasons why you should take sleep apnea seriously and seek an assessment to determine if it’s the reason you snore.
It Can Affect Your Daily Life
Sleep apnea won’t suffocate you in your sleep because your mind and body panic when they’re deprived of oxygen. After your airway becomes clogged and you stop breathing, your body will force itself awake to breathe again, and the process will repeat itself up to hundreds of times a night. The repeated cycles stop you from reaching deep levels of sleep, which can lead to symptoms of sleep deprivation, like daytime exhaustion, an inability to concentrate, and a reduced ability to deal with stress.
It Can Affect Your Overall Health
In addition to sleep deprivation, sleep apnea also forces you to work harder to receive less oxygen, which can tax your cardiovascular and respiratory systems. Over time, the cumulative effects can have a negative impact on your overall health and increase your risks of chronic health issues later in life.
It Can Remain Undetected for Years
Despite its continuous interruptions to your sleep, patients with sleep apnea usually are not aware of the condition because they are not roused from consciousness when they stop breathing. If you have sleep apnea, you might still believe that you are sleeping soundly through the night, and snoring may be the only warning sign you recognize.