Will a CPAP Machine Stop My Snoring?

cpap stop snoring
  • The fuzzy distinction between sleep apnea and snoring can be tricky when searching for snoring solutions online. 
  • CPAP machines may stop snoring for those who use them for CPAP treatment, but they should not be considered the sole solution to snoring.
  • Snoring can indicate obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) but is not a definitive indicator. 
  • Several other affordable snoring prevention options are on the market to relieve symptoms if they are intermittent or mild. 
  • However, you should be tested to determine sleep apnea if you snore regularly. 
  • Talk to your doctor if you are looking for solutions to why you still snore despite CPAP. 
  • You may need a pressure adjustment, a different type of mask, or a chin strap to support your jaw during CPAP therapy.
  • This article covers the causes and differences between snoring and sleep apnea and potential solutions for assisting you and your partner when occasional snoring arises.

Why do I start snoring?

  • Knowing why you snore is the first step to finding a solution. It’s easy to imagine the sound of snoring, but what does it look like? Although it can be a funny sound, snoring can be due to a partial airway blockage. 
  • It could indicate a more serious health problem. 
  • While it’s not a sign of a health problem , research from 2019 suggests that snoring, as a leading cause, is the early stage of a common sleep-related breathing disorder.
  • During sleep, the muscles in the throat and mouth relax, allowing excess tissue and even the tongue to sag and narrow the airway. 
  • When the airway is partially blocked, the slackened tissues tend to vibrate as air passes through, resulting in the snoring sound.
  • Alcohol consumers who smoke regularly suffer from chronic nasal obstructions such as deviated septums and who are obese have a higher risk of snoring. 
  • Genetically, people with excess tissue or anatomical features of the mouth that cause airway narrowing are more likely to be affected by snoring.

Snoring & sleep apnea

  • Snoring can often indicate an underlying condition known as obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). Habitual sleeping (at least three nights per week) is extremely common and is often associated with underlying OSA. 
  • The severity of snoring is directly related to the severity of OSA, becoming louder as the degree of obstruction increases.
  • Snoring and OSA differ when the obstruction is severe enough to block the airway completely. 
  • In obstructive sleep apnea, the airway is so severely obstructed that the sufferer cannot breathe for several hours and often wakes up breathless or coughing.
  • People with sleep apnea suffer from chronic symptoms that typically include morning headaches, daytime sleepiness and hypersomnia. 
  • The sleep quality is affected by breathing pauses and is often accompanied by interrupted slumber or sleep deprivation. 
  • However, not all snorers suffer from OSA. Snoring that is not due to sleep apnea as a cause is referred to as simple snoring.
  • Patients suffering from OSA usually use CPAP machines, which deliver a steady stream of air under pressure to open the airway and ensure normal breathing. Generally, this results in more energy during the day, a lower risk of developing comorbidities such as Alzheimer’s disease, and snoring can be dramatically reduced or stopped altogether.

Can a CPAP machine help to stop snoring?

  • Although using a CPAP machine is usually designed to minimise or eliminate snoring, this is not its primary function. 
  • While there are oral appliances that can treat both sleep apnea and snoring, only mouthguards that stop snoring can be purchased without a prescription. 
  • If your only goal is to stop snoring and not treat sleep apnea or other sleep disorders, mouth guards for snoring are among the most affordable options and should not be considered for purchasing a CPAP machine.
  • Suppose your doctor has diagnosed you with OSA, and you are using anti-snoring medications. 
  • In that case, they will not be enough to cure your sleep apnea, and you will need a CPAP machine or oral device to treat sleep apnea or an alternative option to treat OSA.
  • If you snore frequently and have not yet been screened to determine obstructive sleep apnea, an in-home sleep test is a quick and inexpensive way to determine if you have OSA from the comfort of your home.

Alternatives to CPAP for snoring

  • The CPAP machine is the best treatment for snoring caused by OSA. Indeed, CPAP treatment is unsuitable for everyone because it is uncomfortable or causes claustrophobia. 
  • There are many alternatives if there are better options than a CPAP machine. These include but are not limited to

Anti-snoring mouth guards

  • Like oral appliances used for sleep apnea and other disorders, anti-snoring mouthguards attempt to place the teeth to open the airway or keep the tongue from falling back into the throat. 
  • Tongue restraints accomplish this by leaving a safe space between the teeth for the language to sit in so it does not fall down the throat. 
  • Depending on the price and model, they range from standard fitted options to custom moulded mouthpieces.

Lifestyle modifications

Snoring can be affected by many factors in our lives, including:

Being overweight or obese

  • overweight and obese people tend to have a lot of tissue in their necks, which can increase the likelihood of snoring. 
  • Being leaner and exercising can reduce the likelihood of snoring and the risk of developing OSA.

Alcohol Consumption

  • Recent research indicates that drinking two to three hours before bedtime may significantly impair sleep quality by disrupting certain stages of restful slumber. 
  • It also relaxes muscles and increases the risk of snoring.

Smoking/tobacco use

  • A 2012 study concluded that smokers suffered numerous adverse effects on their sleep and had more leg movements and apneas than those who did not smoke during rest. 
  • Numerous studies have also found a positive association between smoking and a higher rate of snoring. 
  • This study demonstrated that quitting smoking can significantly improve sleep and decrease frequency and intensity, thus helping improve snoring rates and frequency.

Medications

  • sleeping pills, sedatives, and muscle relaxants make snoring more difficult due to their effect on throat muscles during sleep.

Sleep position

  • When discussing OSA, it is often mentioned that many sufferers have POSA, also known as a positional obstruction during sleep. 
  • This obstruction only occurs in a particular sleep position, usually supine. However, it can be remedied by experimenting with different sleeping positions and supportive pillows.

Some light oral exercises such as tiger crying or tongue sliding, jaw pressure relief, or even singing can strengthen the throat and mouth muscles and slowly reduce snoring.

Surgical Methods

Surgical interventions related to snoring are not the norm but are usually successful. Surgery is usually the last option, and if your doctor is considering surgery as a treatment option, you are likely suffering from severe OSA. Some of the most commonly used procedures for OSA are:

  • Soft palate procedures: include uvulopalatopharyngoplasty (UPPP) and the pillar procedure. These procedures focus on removing tissue or developing methods to support the soft palate at the back of the roof of the mouth.
  • Hypopharyngeal procedures: Examples include genioglossal advancement and midline glossectomy. These procedures focus specifically on the tongue and the muscles that control the language.
  • Jaw advancement is also known as maxillomandibular advancement, a procedure in which the jaw is moved inward (similar to braces) to prevent the tongue from blocking the airway.
  • Hypoglossal Nerve Stimulation: Stimulation of the hypoglossal nerve stimulation, a device is implanted into the hypoglossal nervous system, which controls the tongue. The implanted devices gently stimulate the nerve while breathing to prevent it from entering the airway.

To Find a solution

  • If your snoring is affecting your sleep quality, it’s time to find the right solution. 
  • The effects of snoring on your ability to wake up in the morning aren’t what you deserve. 
  • Both sleep disorders and snoring are treatable conditions for which there are medical solutions.
  • If the CPAP machine doesn’t work for you, you need to look for other ways to lower your risk of sleep apnea-related illness. 
  • Contact your ENT Specialists to determine if CPAP, surgery, or another medical device can help you.

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