Somnowell have developed the world’s first 4th generation mandibular advancement device. The Somnowell MAA is made from cast chrome cobalt alloy, second only to gold for long-term use in the mouth, making it extremely comfortable, small and discreet.
What is Snoring?
Snoring is defined as a coarse sound made by vibrations of the soft palate and other tissue in the mouth, nose & throat (upper airway). It is caused by turbulence inside the airway during inspiration. The turbulence is caused by a partial blockage that may be located anywhere from the tip of the nose to the vocal chords. The restriction may occur only during sleep, or it may persist all the time and be worse when we are asleep. This is because our muscle tone is reduced during sleep and there may be insufficient muscle tone to prevent the airway tissue vibrating. During waking hours muscle tone keeps the airway in good shape; that’s why we don’t snore when awake.
Snoring is something that cannot be stopped at will, neither is it something that can be ‘cured’. It can however, be successfully controlled. Snoring is caused by a physical abnormality that needs to be identified before a control can be found. This is not as difficult as it seems and the good news is there is a control for everybody. Finding the cause is the key to finding a solution. In most instances snoring can be controlled by simple self-help remedies.
What is Sleep Apnoea? (Sleep Apnea)
Obstructive Sleep Apnoea (OSA) is defined as the cessation of airflow during sleep preventing air from entering the lungs caused by an obstruction. These periods of ‘stopping breathing’ only become clinically significant if the cessation lasts for more than 10 seconds each time and occur more than 10 times every hour. OSA only happens during sleep, as it is a lack of muscle tone in your upper airway that causes the airway to collapse. During the day we have sufficient muscle tone to keep the airway open allowing for normal breathing. When you experience an episode of apnoea during sleep your brain will automatically wake you up, usually with a very loud snore or snort, in order to breathe again. People with OSA will experience these wakening episodes many times during the night and consequently feel very sleepy during the day: they have an airway that is more likely to collapse than normal.
How Do I Know I Have Sleep Apnoea?
People with sleep apnoea may complain of excessive daytime sleepiness often with irritability or restlessness. But it is normally the bed partner, family or friends who notice the symptoms first. Sufferers may experience some of the following:
- Extremely loud heavy snoring, often interrupted by pauses and gasps
- Excessive daytime sleepiness, e.g., falling asleep at work, whilst driving, during conversation or when watching TV. (This should not be confused with excessive tiredness with which we all suffer from time to time)
- Irritability, short temper
- Morning headaches
- Changes in mood or behaviour
- Anxiety or depression
- Decreased interest in sex
Remember, not everyone who has these symptoms will necessarily have sleep apnoea. We possibly all suffer from these symptoms from time to time but people with sleep apnoea demonstrate some or all of these symptoms all the time.