To treat your condition, your doctor likely will first recommend lifestyle changes, such as losing weight, avoiding alcohol close to bedtime and changing sleeping positions. If lifestyle changes don't eliminate snoring, your doctor may suggest:
Nov. 07, 2012
Oral appliances. Oral appliances are form-fitting dental mouthpieces that help advance the position of your tongue and soft palate to keep your air passage open.
If you choose to use an oral appliance, visit your dental specialist at least once every six months during the first year, and then at least annually after that, to have the fit checked and to make sure that your condition isn't worsening. Excessive salivation, dry mouth, jaw pain and facial discomfort are possible side effects from wearing these devices.
Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP). This approach involves wearing a pressurized mask over your nose while you sleep. The mask is attached to a small pump that forces air through your airway, which keeps it open. CPAP (SEE-pap) eliminates snoring and treats sleep apnea.
Although CPAP is the most reliable method of treating obstructive sleep apnea, and it's effective, some people find it uncomfortable or have trouble adjusting to the noise or feel of the machine. Your doctor may be able to make adjustments to the device if you're having trouble adjusting to the machine, such as adding a heated humidifier or nasal pillows, that might help make you more comfortable.
- Palatal implants. In this procedure, known as the pillar procedure, doctors inject braided strands of polyester filament into your soft palate, which stiffens it and reduces snoring. Palatal implants don't have any known serious side effects; however, the benefits and safety of the procedure are still being studied.
- Traditional surgery. In a procedure called uvulopalatopharyngoplasty (UPPP), you're given general anesthetics and your surgeon tightens and trims excess tissues from your throat — a type of face-lift for your throat. The risks of this procedure include bleeding, infection, pain and nasal congestion.
Laser surgery. In laser-assisted uvulopalatopharyngoplasty (LAUPPP), an outpatient surgery for snoring, your doctor uses a small hand-held laser beam to shorten the soft palate and remove your uvula. Removing excess tissue enlarges your airway and reduces vibration. You may need more than one session to get your snoring under control.
Laser surgery and palatal implants aren't generally recommended as treatment for sleep apnea, because they haven't been proved effective for sleep apnea. Possible risks from these procedures include pain, infection, bleeding and nasal congestion.
- Radiofrequency tissue ablation (somnoplasty). In this outpatient procedure, you'll be given local anesthetic. Doctors use a low-intensity radiofrequency signal to shrink tissue in the soft palate to help reduce snoring. The effectiveness of this newer procedure needs further study. Generally, this procedure is less painful than other types of snoring surgery.
- Snoring. American Academy of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery. http://www.entnet.org/HealthInformation/snoring.cfm. Accessed Aug. 30, 2012.
- Beninati W, et al. Overview of snoring in adults. http://www.uptodate.com/index. Accessed Aug. 30, 2012.
- Snoring and sleep apnea. American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons. http://www.aaoms.org/sleep_apnea.php. Accessed Sept. 6, 2012.
- Rosen GM. Mechanisms and predisposing factors for sleep related breathing disorders in children. http://www.uptodate.com/index. Accessed Sept. 6, 2012.
- Strohl KP. Sleep related breathing disorders in adults: Definitions. http://www.uptodate.com/index. Accessed Sept. 10, 2012.
- Strohl KP. Overview of obstructive sleep apnea in adults. http://www.uptodate.com/index. Accessed Sept. 10, 2012.
- Paruthi S. Evaluation of suspected obstructive sleep apnea in children. http://www.uptodate.com/index. Accessed Sept. 10, 2012.
- Beninati W. Treatment of adults with snoring. http://www.uptodate.com/index. Accessed Aug. 30, 2012.
- Millman RP, et al. Polysomnography in obstructive sleep apnea in adults. http:/www.uptodate.com/index. Accessed Sept. 10, 2012.
- Flint PW, et al. Cummings Otolaryngology: Head & Neck Surgery. 5th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Mosby Elsevier; 2010. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/page.do?eid=4-u1.0-B978-0-323-05283-2..00019-7&isbn=978-0-323-05283-2&sid=1353392067&uniqId=361428808-4#4-u1.0-B978-0-323-05283-2..00019-7. Accessed Sept. 10, 2012.
- Dave NB. Initiation of positive airway pressure therapy for obstructive sleep apnea in adults. http://www.uptodate.com/index. Accessed Sept. 10, 2012.
- MSM (Methylsulfonylmethane). Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database. http://www.naturaldatabase.com. Accessed Sept. 10, 2012.
- Puhan MA, et al. Didgeridoo playing as alternative treatment for obstructive sleep apnoea syndrome: Randomised controlled trial. BMJ. 2006;332:266.
- Ernst AOE. Can singing exercises reduce snoring? A pilot study. Complementary Therapies in Medicine. 2000;8:151.
- Wardrop PJC, et al. Do wind and brass players snore less? A cross-sectional study of snoring and daytime fatigue in professional orchestral musicians. Clinical Otolaryngology. 2011;36:134.
- Antoniadou M, et al. Lung function in wind instrument players. Pneumon. 2012;25:180.
- Morgenthaler TI (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Oct. 15, 2012.
You Are ... The Campaign for Mayo Clinic
Mayo Clinic is a not-for-profit organization. Make a difference today.