Snoring is a symptom that something is wrong, says the UNAM

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Snoring can pose health problems. Photo: Getty Images.

Snoring can lead to various ailmentsamong them cardiovascular Y cerebrovascularpoints out the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) which also recommends a series of actions to reduce this condition.

Contrary to what is commonly thought, snoring It is not synonymous with a good sleep and, on the contrary, it forms part of one of the sleep disorders that affects the population.

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The health risks of snoring

Snoring increases heart rate and decreases the amount of oxygenation in the brain, causing loss of neurons.

The specialist at the Sleep Disorders Clinic (CTS) of the UNAM School of MedicineSelenne Verde Tinoco, points out the risks of snoring:

  • Desaturations could be a risk factor for cardiovascular and cerebrovascular diseases.
  • This could lead to heart attacks.
  • Furthermore, snoring could have repercussions on our quality of life during the day.

The risks go further because, as detailed in the bulletin of the UNAMthe unrefreshing sleepas a result of the reduction in hours of night rest, has an impact on the following aspects:

  • Our state of mind.
  • We can suffer memory problems such as small forgetfulness.
  • Car accidents can be triggered by the possibility of falling asleep while driving.
  • The risk of chronic degenerative diseases such as hypertension and uncontrolled diabetes is increased.

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How to avoid snoring? UNAM responds

For avoid snoringVerde Tinoco, suggests the following actions:

  • Have control of our body weight.
  • Do not consume alcoholic beverages at night.
  • Sleep on the side, because if we sleep on our backs, the problem could be exacerbated.

In addition, it is recommended that an expert in sleep medicine make timely detection from a clinical consultation, individualized and comprehensive, through a study where the record of a night of sleep in a laboratory.

The specialist will be able to do a mapping, a encephalographic record different signals from the brain while we sleep, as well as respiratory and movement variables to determine if there is a respiratory disorder.

From the above, one could establish a surgical treatment, if necessary, to cut any anatomical structure; or use the positive mechanical ventilation: the use of a compressor that releases air under pressure and allows air to pass through our obstructed airway and thereby control respiratory pauses and snoring, the expert highlights.

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What causes snoring?

The specialist at the Sleep Disorders Clinic points out that snoring is caused by:

  • Some airway abnormalitythat is to say, that anatomically we have a wide tongue and nose or deviation of the nasal septum, drooping or elongated palate, and uvula or low uvula. When these are anatomically larger, they cause obstruction of the air passage.
  • Due to the position in which we sleep (mainly on our backs), these muscles go back and obstruct the passage of air, which generates respiratory pauses lasting 10 seconds and up to three to five minutes, accompanied by vibrations in a specific muscle of our collapsed airway, known as snoring.
  • There is snoring produced by a variety of factors, such as mouth anatomy and paranasal sinuses, overweight, alcohol consumption when bedtime approaches, nasal congestion, or sleeping on your back.

The overweight and the obesity they are also important indicators for developing sleep-disordered breathing.

In that sense, the neck circumference It is a significant factor: “above 40 centimeters in diameter represents an excess of adipose tissue in that area of ​​the body, which, during the night, goes backwards, causing the presence of a sleep disturbance”, highlights the specialist.

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