Are You Ignoring Snoring?

The first recorded reference to a bulldog was around 1631 when an English gentleman wrote that he wanted someone to "procuer mee two good Bulldogs." Since then the once-ferocious canines have become sweet-natured and hardly capable of tackling a bull (originally they were bred to fight a tethered toro). They do, however, still snore loudly, often surpassing humans in volume and frequency! It's estimated that 40% of adult men and 24% of adult women snore regularly, and one study found that women snore at about 50 decibels and men hit around 52.

What makes a snore? Snoring happens when the muscles supporting your upper airway relax during sleep and the air flowing through the passages makes adjacent tissue vibrate.

Snoring and your health: Even if snoring doesn't fully awaken you, whatever regularly disturbs sleep (and it does) is associated with health problems such as Type 2 diabetes, depression, obesity, cardiovascular disease and high blood pressure. Snoring can also be a sign of developing sleep apnea. Get evaluated by your doc or sleep specialist.

To reduce snoring:

- Limit or eliminate alcohol.

- Sleep on your side (with a pillow between your legs).

- Lose weight.

- Quit smoking.

- Elevate your head.

- Treat allergies.

- Talk to your doc about using devices that keep airways or nasal passages open or the mouth shut. Sometimes minimal operations may be done to stiffen the soft palate or remove part of the tonsils or uvula in the throat.

Your health and happiness - and your bedmate's - depend on controlling the snore!

© 2019 Michael Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet Oz, M.D.
Distributed by King Features Syndicate, Inc.

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