What is the Difference Between Snoring and Sleep Apnoea?
Everyone will snore occasionally and the sound is usually continuous and regular. Sleep apnoea is quite different as people will snore loudly, but breathing is frequently interrupted as air is prevented from entering the lungs. Breathing can cease for several seconds until the brain prompts the body to restart it, usually with a loud snort or gasp. This is called obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA) and is due to a lack of muscle tone in the upper airway, allowing it to collapse inwards, preventing normal continuous breathing.
What are the Symptoms of OSA?
People with sleep apnoea are often excessively sleepy during the day. They may feel irritable or headachy and they might have depression or anxiety. However these symptoms might not necessarily indicate sleep apnoea which is why it is important to get an accurate diagnosis.
How is Sleep Apnoea Diagnosed and Treated?
We may recommend a sleep study which will usually involve spending a night in a clinic where specialist equipment will be used to monitor the quality of your sleep. The results will help determine the most suitable treatment. Mild to moderate cases of sleep apnoea can often be successfully treated with the use of a custom-made oral device. This helps to hold the lower jaw slightly forwards during sleep so the airway is less likely to become blocked.