Snoring is not considered a life-threatening problem. But, frequent and heavy snoring may have serious side effects. Research shows around 25 percent of American adults need treatment for chronic snoring.
Physical structure abnormalities can cause snoring but could also show underlying health issues. Snorers need a thorough assessment to diagnose or identify a cause. You can manage snoring using the best mouth tape for snoring, provided you know the cause. If ignored, snoring can lead to more serious problems, including:
1. Neuromuscular Injuries
Loud snoring may cause neuromuscular injuries in the upper airway tract. This cycle of continuous snoring leads to recurrent damage. Some snorers may experience further issues, such as difficulty in swallowing.
2. Heart Failure
Snoring occurs when someone has a blockage in breathing. It causes interruptions in breathing 20-30 times an hour. The breaks cause a drop in oxygen levels. The snorer will experience wakefulness and difficulty breathing.
These intervals also increase the levels of cortisone and adrenaline. These stress hormones contribute to heart failure, high blood pressure, and heart attacks.
Note that snoring is not a sign of heart failure. But, it may be a sign of sleep apnea leading to heart failure. It’s crucial to identify the underlying cause.
3. Chronic Headaches
Chronic headaches may be a side effect of snoring. Snorers may experience headaches due to stress, sleep issues, or inconsistent oxygen levels.
4. Irregular Heart Rhythm
One of the severe side effects of snoring is arrhythmias. This is a cardiac condition that disrupts the heart’s normal rhythm. A combination of abnormal heart rhythm and interrupted breathing is dangerous.
Reflux Disease (GERD) is one of the secondary side effects of snoring. While it is unrelated to snoring, it occurs when stomach acids enter the esophagus. Long-term snoring and irregular throat openings cause or worsen GERD.
Snoring, especially loud snoring, can cause a narrowing of neck arteries. This increases the risk of stroke.
Snoring causes frequent wake-ups. Heavy snorers have higher chances of experiencing poor sleep quality due to disruption. One of the signs is tiredness which affects mood and emotional well-being in the long term.
It also causes drowsiness and sleepiness during the day. It affects concentration and focus. Drivers may cause traffic accidents.
Mild and loud snoring can indicate a more severe condition. Loud snoring can have extreme side effects. You should hence consider treatment if you are a heavy or frequent snorer.
If you have a bed partner, ask them if they hear snoring at night. Other indicators include headaches, fatigue, weight gain, or concentration issues.