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snoring awaySnoring and Middle Age: Is There A Remedy Short of Homicide?
by Marjorie Dorfman

Does your partner’s snoring roar through your bedroom like a freight train and wake you up in the middle of the night? Do you harbor the secret, vengeful desire to wake him or her up, just to show how it feels? Learn how to cope with snoring. It won’t help you sleep any better, but at least you will have the necessary tools to keep your partner awake and suffering as well.

Silent night, Oh, holy night . . . Snorer out of town.    – The Dorfman Archives

Snoring may be many things, but it is no laughing matter. The problem is manifold throughout the free and not so free world. In fact, some experts contend that Asians are affected in a more severe way than Americans or Europeans. Apparently the facial structure of Asians is such that the snoring problem is magnified. An estimated forty-five percent of the population snores occasionally. Thirty percent of those over thirty snore, rising to forty percent in middle age. Fifty percent of men and forty percent of women snore. Even one of my cats snores, and the first time I heard it I woke up in fright, thinking there was a strange man in my bed. Snoring can cause great bedroom distress, leading as many as eighty percent of couples to end up sleeping in different rooms. No rest for the weary and no recipe, needless to say, for a good marriage or relationship. The social ramifications of snoring make it a serious subject. Snoring is often a symptom of Obstructive Sleep Apnea, a sleep disorder that is potentially life threatening.

snore purrWhy do people snore anyway, an awake and annoyed observer might ask? Well, snoring arises when the passage of air between the nose and throat is blocked, inhibiting normal breathing. Airflow vibrates across the soft palate tissue, which becomes relaxed during sleep. It can be brought on by alcohol, smoking, sleeping pills, blocked nose, sinusitis, enlarged tonsils, deformities in the nasal pathway and excess body weight. Obese middle-aged or older men and overweight menopausal women may start to snore. Some snorers produce the noise all night long and they do it every single night. Others snore only when they first go to sleep. The pattern varies with each individual. Added to all of this is the irritating reality that most snorers don’t even know they snore! (Guaranteed that they’ll figure it out when they end up sleeping alone, whoever they are!)

Almost eighty-five percent of snorers exceed thirty-eight decibels of sound, which is equivalent to the noise of light highway traffic. The average volume of snorers is sixty decibels, about as loud as normal speech, but really loud snorers can reach eighty to eighty-two decibels, the level of a loud yell. The record is ninety decibels, but whatever award was given for such a dubious honor should have been bestowed to the winner’s sleeping partner instead! (They should be commended for self control; having left the snorer alive long enough to receive the honor.) Men tend to snore more loudly than women do, although no one seems to know why. Among the female population, statistics indicate that women who snore are significantly shorter and heavier than women who don’t, with a greater incidence of nasal problems.

There is now scientific evidence provided by The Mayo Clinic that snoring has a very negative impact on the nonsnoring bedmate. These poor souls lose an average of one hour’s sleep per night. Researchers also discovered that nonsnorers wake up, at least briefly, more than twenty times PER HOUR during the night. This produces fragmented sleep. The study also revealed that the sleep of the nonsnorers is so disturbed that they may very well have a sleep disorder all their own. These bedmates end up irritated and sleep-deprived, which in turn affects mood, concentration, judgement and occasional thoughts of murder in the first, second and third degrees.

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Don't miss this excellent book:

Snoring and Sleep Apnea

by Ralph Pascualy, MD, Sally Warren Soest

Snoring and Sleep Apnea

This book is for people who have or suspect they have Sleep Apnea, a potentially fatal sleep disorder that affects approximately 20 million Americans. It includes information on new surgical techniques and the latest oral appliances for relief of snoring and sleep apnea.

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