Snoring happens when air can’t move freely through your nose and mouth during sleep. The airway is too narrow. Air passing through causes the tissues to vibrate and make the sound we know as snoring.
In extreme cases, the airway can become blocked. This is known as obstructive sleep apnea.
Many factors can contribute to snoring such as age, nasal and sinus problems, overweight/obesity, alcohol, smoking, medications, and sleep posture.
Snoring is more than a mere annoyance. The sleep deprivation that results has a negative impact on health and quality of life. Tiredness, headaches, irritability, dry mouth, and relationship difficulties are common outcomes. Research has also shown links between sleep apnea and systemic health problems such as heart attack, stroke, cognitive decline, and more.
CPAP Is Not the Only Solution
One exciting new dental option for treating chronic snoring is a non-surgical laser treatment called Nightlase.
This proven procedure widens the airway by firming up the soft tissues around the top of the airway, helping to reshape the airway. Research has shown that Nightlase can reduce snoring by as much as 74%.
No anesthesia is needed, and the procedure itself is painless. There’s no post-op pain either.
The treatment involves three visits over three months, and appointments generally last just 20 to 30 minutes.
Not a bad investment for a better night’s sleep, if we do say so ourselves!
G. Thomas Colpitts, DDS, AIAOMT
2448 E 81st Street, Suite 1600
Tulsa, Oklahoma 74137