It is commonly known that men snore more than women. According to statistics, more than a third of men and almost a fifth of women snore after the age of thirty, and this increases with age. After age 60, 60% of men and more than 30% of women snore. To understand why men snore more than women, we must understand the physiology of snoring.
What Causes Snoring?
When a person breathes, air passes through the mouth or nose into the pharynx (part of the throat that is behind the mouth and nasal cavity) and the larynx (part of the throat that prevents food and drink from blocking respiratory tract). The air then moves into the windpipe (windpipe), through the bronchi (passage of air to the lungs), and finally enters the lungs.
When a person is awake, the muscles of the pharynx and larynx are always involved. However, during sleep, these muscles relax, causing the airways to be partially blocked by overly relaxed muscle tissue. Since the air does not reach the lungs completely, the pressure in the airways increases and causes a vibration in the soft problems of the respiratory tract. The sound that this vibration makes is snoring. The degree of air obstruction determines the severity of snoring. In most cases, the narrower the airway, the louder the snoring.
What Causes Snoring in Men?
The main reasons men snore are:
- Tea accumulated fat in the neck region tightens the walls of the larynx, narrowing the passage of the airways. A 20% increase in a man’s ideal weight could lead to snoring, however, for women, a 30-40% increase in ideal weight is generally needed to cause snoring.
- Use of sleeping pills, alcohol, or smoking. lead to relaxation of the pharynx and laryngeal muscles, which could lead to periodic or continuous snoring. In general, men tend to consume more alcohol and smoke more than women.
- Nasal septum deviation It occurs when there is an overgrowth of bony and cartilaginous tissues within the nasal cavity. Nasal injuries can also cause a deviated nasal septum. It is common for men to suffer more nasal injuries than women from hard contact sports or other activities.
- Polyps in the nose cause snoring, which occurs more often in men than women.
Is snoring dangerous?
If the throat walls narrow or close completely, air struggles to reach the lungs, causing episodes of apnea (shortness of breath during a period of sleep). If breathing stops for more than 10 seconds, it is diagnosed as complicated snoring. In severe cases, the apnea period can last up to 3 minutes.
With prolonged and regular respiratory stops at night, the organs begin to suffer from oxygen deprivation known as hypoxia. In men, this disorder greatly increases blood pressure during sleep and immediately after waking up. Hypoxia awakens the brain to command the body to breathe, which disrupts normal sleep. As a result, during the day, a person feels tired, has reduced intellectual capacity, and impaired attention and memory. Snoring can also cause erectile dysfunction in men.
Treatment for snoring
Changes in lifestyle:
Now we know the reasons for male snoring and the possible health risks; however, how can this disorder be stopped? Below are some general recommendations that may help reduce snoring.
1) Stop or reduce the use of sedatives and sleeping pills;
2) Stop smoking and drinking alcohol or reduce its consumption;
3) Reduce excess weight, which can also improve muscle tone.
Exercises against snoring:
These exercises increase the tone of the muscles of the soft palate, larynx, and tongue. Results are not instant, but you should be able to notice improvement in 2-3 weeks. The good thing about this treatment is that it has no side effects!
Here are some exercises that will help decrease snoring:
- Stretch the palatal muscles to the maximum by uttering the “o” and “a” sounds.
- Put a pencil on your lips, close your lips tightly and hold the pencil for 5 minutes.
- Try touching your chin with your tongue twice a day for 30 minutes. You should feel tension at the base of your tongue.
- Pretend to bite an apple, repeat this 10 times.
- Close and open your mouth while creating resistance with your hand. Do this exercise 30 times in the morning and in the evening.
- Before going to bed, place a plastic or wooden clamp between your teeth for 3 minutes.
Repeat these exercises from time to time to keep your throat muscles toned.
External aids against snoring:
one) Anti snoring pillows They provide an anatomical position for the neck, which helps align the airway and allows smooth breathing. There are many different types of these pillows available in the market.
two) Oral devices to stop snoring Keep the jaw, tongue, and soft palate tissues in place to allow smooth, uninterrupted breathing.
3) Medicine. There are several medications that can help decrease snoring, available as drops, sprays, and sprays. They work by irritating the mucous membrane, which increases muscle tone. It is best to consult a doctor before using these medications to ensure that the treatment is appropriate for your specific condition.
4) CPAP therapy It is a mask device that provides positive air pressure in the airways during sleep, preventing muscle relaxation.
5) Use of laser and cryotherapy to correct the problem of the soft palate, tongue or the posterior wall of the larynx. This method is not the cheapest, but it is usually effective. Such treatment is used for polyps of the respiratory tract, mucous membrane outgrowths, and adenoid growth.
If you are a male snorer or the partner, family or friend of a male snorer (or female snorer), I hope this article has given you a better understanding of snoring and the wide range of treatments available to help you sleep peacefully. .