Snorers can blame the shape of their throats

Scientists have discovered, by carrying out head and neck scans of snorers and non-snorers, why it is that some people are chronic snorers.

Apparently it all comes down to the shape of the throat.

It appears that snorers have narrower throats, and, the smaller the opening is, the louder the snore.

According to a research team in Slovenia, contrary to popular belief, nasal blockages do not cause snoring, though they may "amplify the loudness".

Dr Igor Fajdiga and his team, from the University Clinic for Otorhinolaryngology and Cervicofacial Surgery in Ljubljana, Slovenia, studied 40 volunteers, 14 were non-snorers, 13 were moderately loud snorers and 13 were loud snorers.

This was according to their partners.

The researchers discovered that how loudly people snored, was directly related to the extent that their throat narrowed when they inhaled during their sleep, and the narrower the throat, the bigger the snore.

Four in every ten men, it seems are snorers.

To blame was the soft palate, which is the soft tissue at the back of the roof of the mouth.

The soft palates in snorers were much bigger than those of non-snorers, meaning it blocked smooth airflow, and turbulent airflow is what creates the noise.

As a rule when we are awake we have enough muscle tone to keep the airways open, but when we are asleep we lose this tone, and being older and overweight can exacerbate the problem.

Some believe posture is a factor, and sleeping on your back may help some sufferers.

Apparently more than 3.5 million people in the UK snore, and it is thought to affect four out of 10 men and up to three out of 10 women.


The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of News Medical.
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