We’ve all been there. We’ve woken up to somebody snoring – whether it was a friend who stayed the night, our parents in the next room, or our partner in bed next to us.

Snoring occurs when the muscles in the soft palate (the roof of the mouth), throat and tongue are relaxed to the point where they can partially obstruct the airway. The soft tissues vibrate during the air flow to make that recognizably deep and hoarse disruptive noise. And the bigger the obstruction in the airway, the louder the snoring will be as the air forces its way out.

Snoring is prevalent in people who have a narrow airway due to a low, thick, soft palate or an elongated uvula. People with large tonsils also tend to snore as well.

Other things that can cause snoring include…

  • Obesity – those who are overweight or obese tend to have more fat tissue on the back of their throat that can narrow their airway
  • Nasal issues – Chronic congestion, allergies
  • Overuse of alcohol, drugs, and tobacco – can cause the throat to relax and reduce its ability to defend itself against the obstruction of the airway

Snoring Appliances

Generally, a physician has to be the one to diagnose snoring and conditions like obstructive sleep apnea. However, dentists can install devices that can open up your air ways to help you stop snoring and sleep better.

  • They can fabricate a tongue re-training device – this is a splint that will hold the tongue in the right position to keep your air ways open throughout the night
  • They can fabricate a mandibular advancement device – this resembles a sports mouth guard that fits over the teeth and forces the jaw slightly forward and down to also open up the air way. It is one of the most widely used snoring solutions as it has a high success rate.

These devices can promote healthy breathing patterns, reduce congestion and as a result, reduce snoring. Snoring is not only a disturbance to other people but to the snorer themselves – so it’s in their best interest to look into a dental solution to ensure they and their loved ones get a good night’s rest.

Learn more about obstructive sleep apnea here and contact us today for an appointment.