Sleep apnoea is a condition in which a person stops breathing, either completely or somewhat, over and over again during sleep. These interruptions in breathing can be several seconds or even minutes long. The pauses in breathing disturb the normal sleep pattern and, if they are long enough, drop the oxygen level in the blood, eventually leading to other medical problems.
There are two main types of Sleep Apnoea:
In Obstructive Sleep Apnoea (OSA), the snorer is more or less strangled regularly during sleep. Imagine the part between the back of the nose and the voice-box as a hose pipe. Right, now imagine this hose pipe being frequently narrowed or closed off by negative pressure as the air inside is sucked out repeatedly. Something very similar happens to the air passage when a person has OSA.
In reality, the negative pressure happens when the snorer breaths in. The air passage closes off because the muscles holding it open are less active during sleep. Also, fatty tissue on the outside of the “hose pipe” can narrow the passage, making it easier to get blocked. Being overweight by only a few kilograms can significantly increase your chances of snoring, that can then develop into OSA.
When the air passage closes off, the snorer struggles to breathe and wakes up – gasping for air. The obstruction is then over, and normal breathing can carry on, allowing the snorer to fall asleep again. This happens over and over again during the night.
We all have heard a sleeping person snoring loudly, and then becomes quite, and starts breathing again with a gasp or snort. This is the classic description of a person with OSA. If severe enough, symptoms can include mood swings, depression, feeling tired, even when you’ve had plenty of sleep, and morning headaches.
The second and less common type of sleep apnoea is Central Sleep Apnoea (CSA) in which there are pauses in breathing during sleep without obstruction to the air passage. In this instance, the brain “forgets” to send signals to the lungs to breathe. Since blockage of the air passage is not required to produce CSA, snoring is usually not a major symptom and may not be at all. CSA is usually the result of other medical conditions like some brain disorders, heart failure, drugs like sleeping tablets, or narcotics that restrain brain activity.
Both OSA and CSA can occur in the same person. When this happens, OSA is usually more severe than CSA.
Symptoms of Obstructive Sleep Apnoea:
[Illustration of listed symptoms]
Here at Snoreeze, we believe that sleep is essential. That is why we offer a wide range of snoring relief products to suit everybody. You can visit our products page here and target the main cause of snoring. All products are available online without the need for a prescription.
In the UK, there are over three million people living with diabetes. 90% of those have type 2. The main risk factors for type 2 diabetes include being overweight or obese. Weight gain increases mass around the neck that will narrow the throat causing the muscles to weaken, restricting the ability to breathe freely. Snoring or sleep apnoea can become a result. Being overweight by only a few kilograms can considerably increase your chances of snoring. You hold the key to managing diabetes by making lifestyle changes.
The International Diabetes Federation have studied a link between type 2 diabetes and sleep apnoea.
These facts are included on their website:
If you’re diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, you’ll need to look after your health from now on. The first step is to look at your diet and lifestyle and make significant changes.
Here are the main areas that you’ll need to look closely at:
If you stay fit and active, you may be able to prevent type 2 diabetes developing by making the above lifestyle changes.
Studies have found that sleep can affect your weight. Tired people have lower levels of leptin, a chemical that makes you feel full and put the fork down, but hold on – they also found that people with restless nights have high levels of ghrelin, a chemical that makes you hungry. Ghrelin triggers your brain that it’s time to eat.
In our most recent Snoreeze survey, conducted by YouGov, we found out that 51% of women admit that their partner’s snoring disrupts their sleep. That’s a good portion of tired women out there. Not having enough sleep sets your brain up to make bad decisions. This could be the reason why we have late night snacks, ladies. Something we’ve all done.
We also found out that 86% of women have never bought their partner a snoring relief product, either. Just think of the lbs you could lose if you slept 8 hrs a night, uninterrupted from your partners snoring. Here at Snoreeze, we challenge everybody to reclaim their 8 hours’ sleep. Discover why your partner snores in our snoring section or try a Snoreeze product and make it part of their bedtime routine.
Michael Phelps, the world’s greatest swimmer, ended his career after five Olympic games, in Rio 2016. Phelps spent countless hours in the pool as he trained for his final appearance in the Rio Olympic Games. He won five gold medals and a silver, making a total score of 23 Olympic titles and 28 medals!
During training, back in 2015, Phelps only began to consider how important sleep is. The Olympic swimmer averaged over seven hours of sleep a night, leading up to Rio. A target he wanted to aim for while in Rio, as well.
Sleep still isn’t fully understood for fitness training. However, sleep and nutrition can help training plans for coaches as early as the Tokyo Olympics in 2020. This can help monitor how the body responds to certain levels of sleep and how it effects or hinders athletes’ overall performance.
In our recent YouGov survey, 60% of the general public snore in the UK. 58% either disrupt their own sleep or their partner’s – which isn’t good, and a shocking 89% have never purchased a snoring relief product either. Just think of the potential athletes the average person could be if they had a better sleep. Here at Snoreeze we challenge you to reclaim your 8 hours’ sleep. Discover why you snore in our snoring section or try a Snoreeze product and make it part of your bedtime routine.
We recommend 7 – 9 hrs sleep for adults for a good night’s sleep. Ultimately, seeing the results in Rio, having a healthy sleep worked well for Phelps. He won six medals – including five golds.
Our recent survey, carried out by YouGov, the results showed us where the highest percentage of snorers in the UK come from. We conducted our questions to 12 regions across the land, and found out that the North East has the highest percentage of snorers with a massive 78%. And with a population of over 2.5 million – that is a lot of snorers.
Of the 78% of snorers in the North East:
Looking at these statistics, there are a lot of snorers in the North East that can cause so many relationships issues. Despite this, only 7% of couples with a snoring partner purchased a snoring relief product. This means that there are a lot of partners across the North East being disturbed, and a lot of relationships left to suffer.
Also, a lot of people are unaware that they may suffer from Sleep Apnoea. For further information on Sleep Apnoea, visit our page Do I Have Sleep Apnoea?
What Can I Do About Snoring?
Find out why your partner (Or yourself) snore in our About Snoring section
Make sure to have your 8 hours of sleep. Here at Snoreeze we challenge you to have a good night’s sleep.
Make a Snoreeze product part of your bedtime routine.
We spend a third of our lives doing it. From the moment we are born until the ultimate sleep. Thomas Edison claimed that it was a waste of time, and others like Florence Nightingale and Margaret Thatcher got by on only four hrs of sleep a night.
Sleep can vary from person to person. Whilst, Margaret Thatcher, stated above, can get by on four hours sleep per night, most healthy adults need between 7 to 9 hrs sleep to function at their best. The hours vary slightly with different age groups.
Here’s a chart for the recommended hours of sleep for each age group:
Here at Snoreeze we believe that you have the right to sleep at night. That is why we are championing a good night’s sleep with our 8 Hour Challenge. Snoreeze is challenging snorers and their partners across Great Britain to get their 8 hours of sleep every night. Taking part is a simple as 1, 2, 3!
When you hear stories of sleepwalkers, you just imagine people walking around the house, but sleepwalkers can do other things. Our night-time activities have evolved with our daytime ones. There have been cases where people have sleep-texted or sent a sleep-email.
Professors have stated that the act of texting and answering an alert on our phones have become so ingrained in us that it’s crossing boundaries between sleeping and being awake. There are a few simple tricks to prevent any embarrassing messages being sent whilst you snooze: turn off your phone at night and keep it well out of reach.
The history of sleep and dreaming goes back to the BC era. Early scientists, physicians, and psychologists had a hard time trying to figure out why we sleep.
One of the first thoughts on why we sleep was by Alcmaeon, one of the most renowned natural philosophers and medical theorists of his time (Ancient Greece). His theory stated that sleep occurs when blood vessels in the brain are filled up and we wake up when the blood vessels empty… He also thought that the eye contains both fire and water. Kudos for trying, Al! The rest of the scientific community would ignore the science of sleep for another 2,000 years, becoming one of the most under-researched areas of human behaviour.
In ancient Egypt, sleep was something that people had no control over. The Egyptians believed that when they fell asleep, they entered a place between the lands of the living and the dead. Sleep was thought to be the works of spirits and a way for the dead to communicate with the living.
A Californian man named Randy Gardner holds the record for the longest period of time a human has gone without sleep. Gardner managed to stay awake for 11 whole days and 24 minutes (that’s 264.4hrs).
Gardner’s health was monitored by Lt. Cmdr. John J. Ross, and he reported that Gardner’s behaviour changed dramatically. Lack of sleep caused Gardner problems with his concentration and even short term memory loss. On the eleventh day, when asked to subtract 7, starting from 100, Gardner stopped at 65 and replied that he had forgotten what he was doing.
There are so many sleeping facts about animals that are super interesting. Here’s a list of a few our faves. Three eye-opening facts about how the animal kingdom sleep.
We've all been there. You've felt fine all day, but as soon as your head hits the pillow...BAM! Your nose has transformed into a dripping tap and even breathing is a struggle.
Check out our 7 top tips for falling (and staying!) asleep when you've got a cold.
There's nothing worse than struggling to drift off because you feel all bunged up. Raising the level of your head while you sleep can really help to solve this problem by draining your sinuses. Adding a few more pillows under your head may seem like a good idea, but this can force your neck to be at an uncomfortable angle, causing pain the following day. Instead, try putting a few large books underneath your mattress. This should raise your body from the waist up, rather than just raising your neck.
You’ll probably need some sort of decongestant or flu medication before bed. But beware; many of these kinds of medications contain caffeine or other stimulants. That’s great during the day when you’re feeling run down and nee a pick-me-up, but taking them too close to bedtime can really disrupt your sleep. Try to avoid any caffeinated drinks or medications after 3 or 4pm and opt for a special night-time cold and flu medication that will make you drowsy.
It's natural for most of us to breathe through our noses while we sleep, but this can be almost impossible if you're full of cold. Nasal sprays are a great way to decongest your nasal passages when you’re all bunged up, helping you to breathe more easily throughout the night. Many of these sprays contain stimulants, so many end up having a negative impact on your sleep. Snoreeze Nasal Spray is made from natural ingredients. So, while it still decongests your nasal passages effectively, it won’t keep you awake at night.
Repeatedly blowing your nose can irritate the skin on your face and leave you with a headache. Having a hot shower or bath can help to clear your sinuses before bed. Placing a bowl of water on the radiator overnight can help to keep the room humid, stopping your throat from drying out and hopefully easing your tickly cough.
We mean nasal strips, of course! These little beauties work wonders when you’re struggling to breathe through your nose. You apply one to the top of your nose and it works by holding your nostrils open to help the air get through. Snoreeze Nasal Strips are hypoallergenic, latex free, and come in two different sizes. They’re great because you can safely use them in combination with nasal sprays or decongestant medications.
It’s difficult to sleep if your room is the wrong temperature, or if you have thin curtains letting outside light in. Try and create a space that is perfect for sleep. Get rid of all sources of light. The darker your room is, the better. Banish all gadgets, making sure to not look at any devices like smartphones or tablets just before bed as the blue light they emit has been proven to disrupt sleep.
Sleeping on your back can also increase your chances of snoring; something many people find themselves doing when suffering from a cold. Try sleeping on your side instead. If you're a natural back-sleeper, prop yourself up with a few pillows to make sure you don't roll back during the night. (You might want to put a tissue or hand towel under your face to catch any mucus throughout the night...YUM!)
Alzheimer's Research UK say keeping active and maintaining a healthy diet are two ways to reduce your risk of dementia, but did you know that reducing your snoring can have an impact too?
Age is the biggest risk factor for dementia, with 1 in 6 people over the age of 80 suffering with the condition. Life expectancy in the UK is rising every year, meaning that dementia is set to become a bigger problem than ever.
Poor sleep has been found to be a risk factor for cognitive decline and dementia. This means that getting a decent amount of uninterrupted sleep is vital not only for our physical health, but our mental health too.
Snoring is a problem that can get worse with age. As we get older muscle tone decreases all over our bodies, even in our airways! This means that the soft tissues in your upper airway are much more likely to vibrate as you breathe; causing the snoring sound.
If you sleep next to a partner, snoring can become a real bugbear in your relationship. Not only does your partner get woken by your snoring, but they probably wake you to stop you snoring too!
Recent studies have shown links between sleepiness and sleep inadequacy and Alzheimer's disease. So, waking your partner throughout the night with your snoring could not only be affecting your relationship, but their health too.
If you snore heavily, it can be a sign of an obstruction in your airway. If you suffer from obstructive sleep apnoea, this obstruction is so severe that the flow of oxygen is reduced or completely stopped while you sleep.
The diagram below shows just how snoring and sleep apnoea (OSA) can be a sign of your problems breathing properly at night.
A study published in the journal Neurology this year found that sleep disordered breathing advanced cognitive decline in the elderly, so making sure your breathing is not obstructed is important to your health.
Products from the Snoreeze Oral Range are designed to tighten and lubricate the soft tissues at the back of the throat, reducing or preventing the snoring that can worsen as we age. These products can help those with a mild to moderate snoring problem to sleep quietly, reducing the impact snoring has on you and your partner.
For those with a more severe snoring problem, sprays and other similar treatments may not prove effective. If you are suffering from severe snoring or mild to moderate sleep apnoea, the Snoreeze Oral Device can really help by making sure you airway does not collapse, creating free space at the back of your throat and ensuring air can flow through easily while you sleep.
The good news is that studies show treatment of sleep apnoea decreases the cognitive decline in patients with Alzheimer's. So, it's never too late for snoring and sleep apnoea treatment to have a positive impact on not only your sleep, but your mind and body.
A huge part of parenting is about teaching your children the valuable lessons you've learned in life. But when it comes to sleep, it seems kids have got it sussed!
Check out the top 5 sleep tips you should be learning from your little ones.
In the UK, afternoon naps reserved for toddlers and the elderly. Unless your workplace is incredible, asking your boss if you could have a nap would result in a big, fat “no”. When in actual fact, everybody should be embracing the lunchtime siesta! An afternoon snooze can really help to put the spring back in your step. Make sure to set an alarm though; if you nap for over 30 minutes, your body will think you've turned in for the night and you'll wake up drowsy.
‘The Rabbit Who Wants To Fall Asleep’ has been all over the news lately, and appears to be some sort of literary sleeping potion for small children. But, what about us grown-ups? The truth is that reading almost anything can help you drift off to sleep. Just make sure your reading is old school – using a real book, and not a tablet. Tablets, smartphones, TVs, and other devices can give off a blue light. This light can stop our bodies producing the sleep hormone; melatonin. So, instead of your ebook helping you drift off, you'll actually feel more awake.
Only parents understand the utter horror of a child yelling “GET UP” while physically prising your eyelids open at 6.03am on Sunday morning. But, the kids have been right all along; getting up at sunrise is great. It’s natural. It’s evolutionary. It can revolutionise your morning routine. Now, unless you’re your own boss, waking up at sunrise might prove difficult in the winter months when the sun doesn’t rise until mid-morning. There are alarm clocks available that mimic sunrise, waking you blissfully…before even the kids are awake!
Life is so rushed that not many of us take time out to relax in the bath. But, if you struggle to fall asleep, the bath could be your secret weapon. As you sit soaking in the tub, your body temperature rises. The cool-down period your body goes through when you get out helps to relax your body and get it to the prime temperature for sleep.
We send the kids to bed as soon as the first yawn appears, but we don’t play by the same rules ourselves. Your body is designed to let you know when it needs sleep, and holding your eyelids open at 3am to reach the end of your TV episode just isn’t wise. However, if you’re getting 7 or 8 hours of ‘good’ sleep a night and still feeling tired during the day, it could be an indication of health issues.
Daytime sleepiness can be a sign of sleep apnoea, a condition where your airway closes at night for up to 10 seconds at a time. This repeatedly stops airflow to your lungs, meaning you wake lots in the night (usually without realising) and don’t get the oxygen you need to feel refreshed. The condition is usually accompanied by loud snoring. If this sounds like you, check out our Snoreeze Oral Device website and see how our discreet mouthpiece could help you get your energy back!
Snoring could not only have a negative impact on your personal life, but your professional life too.
Here are 5 reasons why your snoring problem could end up getting you the sack:
38% of people struggle to get out of bed after a disturbed night’s sleep. The bedtime battle where your partner repeatedly nudges you to silence your snores leaves you both getting little sleep. No wonder your get-up-and-go has got-up-and-gone the next morning. Risk factors like smoking and drinking alcohol can increase your chance of snoring. If you find that you snore more whilst on your back, try sleeping on the side and placing a pillow behind you to stop you rolling back.
54% of people say they are more irritable after a disturbed night’s sleep. After being jabbed in the ribs 47 times in the night, it’s no wonder you’re more likely to snap at your boss. And with 24% of people claiming to be more emotionally sensitive than normal, you can’t rule out an emotional breakdown by the watercooler. For most people, snoring is caused by relaxed muscle tension at the back of the throat. Products like throat sprays and throat rinses can help to tighten and lubricate the soft tissues, preventing snoring.
If you are sat staring into space, your boss might be under the impression that you are slacking. But perhaps they should be blaming your partner for whacking you with a pillow each time you let out a snore. 48% of people surveyed said they found it harder to concentrate after a disturbed night’s sleep, with 34% admitting they are less productive at work. If you snore when you’ve got a cold or are suffering from allergies, nasal snoring relief products can really help. Nasal spray helps to decongest your nasal passages and nasal strips help to open your airways, so you can breathe more easily and shouldn’t snore.
Even if you don’t have a partner to wake you at night, recent studies have found that snoring alone causes the snorer to suffer daytime sleepiness[i]. The exact reason for this is still up for debate. It could be down to fatigue caused by the increased effort of breathing, or being in a constantly light sleep due to the noise you’re making. If you regularly travel with work, taking a snoring spray in your bag can be a bit inconvenient. Things like oral strips and lozenges would give you a more practical solution. They fit easily in to your hand luggage and work on the same principal as other throat products, tightening and lubricating the soft tissues to stop you snoring.
Sleeping on the job is always going to get you in big trouble with your boss. But, if you snore and find yourself drifting off when you don’t intend to (like at your desk or while driving), it could be a sign of something serious. Sleep apnoea is a condition where your airway relaxes and narrows so much that airflow to your lungs is stopped. You end up having broken sleep as your brain wakes you to reopen the airway. Sleep apnoea is linked to heart disease, type 2 diabetes, stroke, and depression – so there is much more at stake than losing your job. If you’re suffering from mild/moderate sleep apnoea, something as simple as the Snoreeze Oral Device (it’s a bit like a gum-shield) can keep your airway open at night, helping you to breathe normally and stopping your snoring.
All figures, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov Plc. Total sample size was 2,058 adults. Fieldwork was undertaken between 15th - 16th October 2014. The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all UK adults (aged 18+).
[i] Daniel J. Gottlieb, Qing Yao, Susan Redline, Tauqeer Ali, Mark W. Mahowald. "Does Snoring Predict Sleepiness Independently of Apnea and Hypopnea Frequency?" American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, Vol. 162, No. 4 (2000), pp. 1512-1517.