Is Snoring a Sign of Sleep Apnea?

Serving Patients in Oklahoma City, Edmond, Lawton, and Norman, OK

Sleep apnea occurs when your sleep is interrupted by a disruption in your breathing. For a few seconds, you actually stop breathing, triggering your body to awaken you so that you will start breathing again. Those who suffer from severe sleep apnea go through this process many times every night, causing major disruptions to their normal sleep cycles. The most common form of sleep apnea, known as obstructive sleep apnea, or OSA, occurs when the soft tissues at the back of the mouth relax enough during sleep to block the airways.

Snoring is a common—and obvious—symptom of obstructive sleep apnea. About 70% of obstructive sleep apnea sufferers snore. Snoring associated with sleep apnea can be very loud and disturbing to others, leading your sleep apnea to disrupt not only your sleep patterns but those of people around you, especially a spouse or significant other. However, the snoring can also be fairly quiet. The most troublesome characteristic of snoring is when it ends suddenly with a choking sound.

For people with mild to moderate obstructive sleep apnea, the most comfortable solution is an oral appliance that, when worn at night, repositions the jaw and/or tongue to help keep your airways open. More severe sleep apnea may require a Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) machine that ensures enough oxygen enters the lungs throughout the night.

If you are in the Oklahoma City area and your nights are interrupted by snoring, Dr. Terry Bass and his experienced staff can help evaluate your symptoms to determine if you have sleep apnea. A diagnosis and appropriate treatment from our Oklahoma City area snoring experts can help make your nights peaceful again. Please contact Dr. Terry Bass for an appointment or sleep apnea consultation.