While snoring can be an issue, it is often not so much a problem for the individual himself as it is for his sleeping partner. In many cases the individual himself isn’t even aware of the fact that he snores, while his sleeping partner–and sometimes even other individuals sleeping elsewhere in the home–are very much aware of his snoring problems. As troublesome as snoring can be, it is often not easily resolved simply by rousing the individual or by having him roll over onto his side while he is sleeping. In fact, snoring can become just as frustrating for the individual himself as it is for others around him when his sleep is constantly interrupted in an effort to help stem his snoring issues. Furthermore, many individuals who suffer from excessive snoring actually achieve lower quality sleep as a result of these issues and may feel tired throughout the day, suffering from headaches and fighting the urge to “drift off” in the early afternoon when their exhaustion finally catches up with them. This can lead to a variety of health issues, including heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke, diabetes, depression and even memory loss, which means that snoring is far more than simply loud breathing that bothers one’s sleeping partner.
Snoring actually occurs when an individual’s tongue muscle recedes and their throat tissue becomes relaxed. In the case of sleep apnea the airway can actually become blocked, but even where this isn’t an issue the relaxed tongue muscle and throat tissue vibrate when the individual inhales and exhales. Snoring does tend to occur more in adults than in children, more in men than in women, and more in overweight individuals, but the fact is that anyone could potentially become a snorer. Fortunately, a snore guard may be able to help.
The Benefit of a Snore Guard
In some cases snoring is caused by sleep apnea, which is a medical condition that needs medical diagnosis and treatment. A medical doctor may advise the use of a snore guard in order to improve your breathing and your snoring, perhaps where sleep apnea is relatively mild, but oftentimes there are other recommended treatments in the case of sleep apnea. However, if your snoring is not caused by sleep apnea or some other medical condition, a snore guard may work wonderfully to help you.
Snore guards work best when they are designed specifically for the individual who will use them. Stock snore guards can sometimes be found on store shelves, but as these devices are not made for the specific mouth that will be using them they are unlikely to fit well, and so can potentially cause more problems than they solve. A dental professional will take an impression of your mouth so that a snore guard can be manufactured exactly to the specifications necessary to fit your mouth perfectly. When done well, the snore guard should fit snugly but comfortably in your mouth, supporting your upper and lower teeth. It will cause your lower jaw to move forward, which will also cause your tongue to move forward so that it doesn’t block your airway. Occasionally, a snore guard that has been professionally designed may yet need some adjusting once you have had a chance to try it out. In many cases, your dentist will be able to do this for you in their office. They will also take the opportunity to instruct you in how to properly use and take care of your snore guard.
At Avenue Dental Arts, Dr. Saferin recommends the Silent Nite snore guard to her patients. The Silent Nite snore guard is flexible, thin and comfortable, allowing for freedom of movement even while it helps to position the lower jaw so as to reduce or eliminate snoring issues. It is not designed to assist individuals who are suffering from sleep apnea, but can work wonderfully for those individuals who are simply suffering from snoring issues.
It is important to note that even a properly fitted snore guard can take some getting used to, especially since it is only worn at night. However, it can be highly effective when given the chance, which not only means that your sleeping partner will appreciate a quieter night’s sleep but you will also find that you sleep better and more deeply, operating with more energy during the day.
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