What Is the Difference Between Snoring and Sleep Apnea?

Nov 16th 2020

It is more than likely that everyone has snored during some night at some point in their lives. It's a very common thing that happens while sleeping. However, there are some confusions over snoring. For some, chronic snoring may be alarming to them, because they fear it may be a sign of a harsher condition known as sleep apnea. But those do not always go hand in hand. We here at Zyppah are big believers in making sure that people understand the science and causes behind snoring and sleep apnea. This also includes defining the differences between them. So, let’s get into it.

What is snoring?

Snoring, in general, when it is not connected to a more severe condition, can be generally harmless. The biggest issue is if you share a bed, room, or wall with someone else. It is possible that your snoring may make it difficult for them to fall asleep or stay asleep. So, when most people look for snoring solutions, it is not so much for them, as it is for those they love. In doing this, it is best to understand what causes snoring, which can lead to a better understanding of what may and or may not help.

When we sleep, basically every part of our bodies relax. This includes specific internal tissues, like the ones in and around your neck. If they relax too much or have other factors narrowing them, they can become too narrow. At that point, they make the airway much narrower and make it harder for the air to pass through. This leads to the tissues being vibrated by the air, causing the growling sound associated with snoring.

There are a number of things that may cause the narrowing of the airway that leads to snoring. It could be enlarged tonsils or an enlarged uvula. It may be caused by a deviated septum when the wall between your nostrils is not lined up correctly. Those are some of the more serious cases that could require additional medical attention. Snoring could also be caused by more fundamental reasons, like nasal congestion and drinking alcohol not long before bed.

However, there is another cause of snoring that could be a bit more serious. That would be sleep apnea.

What is sleep apnea?

Sleep apnea essentially is a disorder that causes you to stop breathing multiple times throughout the night. There are three kinds of disorders. The first is obstructive sleep apnea, which is caused by similar snoring issues, the throat muscles relaxing almost too much. The second kind is central sleep apnea. This is caused by your brain, not sending the correct signals to the muscles involved in breathing. The final version is complex sleep apnea syndrome. It is when someone is dealing with central and obstructive sleep apneas.

There are several different symptoms of these conditions. Many of them overlap, which makes it hard to tell which form of sleep apnea you have. Some of the more common ones include difficulty breathing while sleeping, waking up with a dry mouth, a headache in the morning, insomnia, and irritability. Of course, there is another very common symptom: loud snoring.

There are also a number of different potential factors that can play into whether or not you develop sleep apnea. They can be things like your weight, your neck's size, your gender (men are more likely to develop it than women), age, and family history.

Sleep apnea is potentially serious and should be treated as quickly as possible. Treatment can not only ease the symptoms, but treatment may also prevent the potential heart problems associated with the condition.

This boils down to that not everyone who snores has sleep apnea, but many people who have sleep apnea snore. There is a correlation between snoring and sleep apnea, but not causation. If you have received comments about your snoring, that it may be alarmingly loud, there are potential solutions for you. But what are they?

What can I do to ease these issues?

The first thing that you are going to want to do is to talk to your doctor. If it appears to be more than just snoring, they will likely refer you to a sleep specialist. This specialist will be able to help you definitively decide if what you are dealing with is basic snoring, or if your snoring is a sign of sleep apnea. Once that is decided, then together you can decide what is the best way forward.

For many, it just turns out that they are snoring for any of the normal, innocuous reasons. At that point, you will be faced with a number of different potential solutions. However, there is one that could especially help. Zyppah is a mouthguard that could help keep you from snoring. With its simple design, you may be able to stop snoring and help those you love to sleep better at night. The patented tongue elastic in our Zyppah mouthguard may help keep your tongue from getting in the way of your airway, lessening the amount that you snore.

If it does turn out that you have sleep apnea, there are a number of different treatments that your doctor may go over with you. This may include surgeries or weight loss plans, among some milder treatments. However, that does not mean that Zyppah cannot help. While Zyppah is in no way designed to treat sleep apnea, it could still help those with the condition minimize their snoring.

If you are interested in what Zyppah has to offer, check out our shop page. There you will find our original Zyppah mouth guard in a variety of different colors and styles. All of our Zyppahs are backed by a 90-day money-back guarantee. Give the Zyppah a try. If you are not satisfied, then send it back! But we think you and your loved ones will be pleased with the result.

Sources:

https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/sleep-apnea/symptoms-causes/syc-20377631

https://www.premierhealth.com/your-health/articles/women-wisdom-wellness-/a-simple-snore-or-something-more-sleep-apnea-and-snoring