4 Reasons Snoring May Pose A Health Risk

4 Reasons Snoring May Pose A Health Risk

If you or someone you know snores incessantly through the night, it may be time for a health re-assessment. Even though there are scores of anti-snoring products on the market, most don’t work and even if they do they only attempt to mask the problem rather than address the root cause. 

When someone constantly snores they are probably struggling with sleep apnea. Sleep apnea, also known as OSA (obstructive sleep apnea), is when a person’s airway becomes partially blocked or obstructed during sleep. This can be caused by many things including excessive fat in the throat, trauma, or illness. When the airway is blocked the individual must wake themselves to regain control of their breathing. This constant sleep/wake cycle which may occur a few times to several hundred per night results in never being able to fully enter rapid eye movement (REM) the deep sleep we all need for optimal health.  

Find out why you should be concerned about your snoring. These 4 reasons snoring may be a health risk are why having a professional medical practitioner check your snoring could increase your quality of life and, in some cases, possibly save your life as well. 

High Blood Pressure

One of the most dangerous risks of heart attack or other serious health problems is high blood pressure. 

According to the American Heart Association, 

  • In the United States, about 77.9 million (1 out of every 3) adults have high blood pressure.
  • A higher percentage of men than women have high blood pressure until age 45. From ages 45–54 and 55–64, the percentage of men and women is similar; after that a much higher percentage of women than men have high blood pressure.
  • About 69% of people who have a first heart attack, 77% who have a first stroke, and 74% who have congestive heart failure have blood pressure higher than 140/90.

For some people, snoring could be an indication of chronic high blood pressure. A paper citing a national multi-center study published by Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health found that OSA has a significant impact on your health. It stated that, 

“The results of the study showed that people with more than 30 pauses per hour of sleep were more than twice as likely to suffer from high blood pressure than those with no breathing pauses. An increased risk of high blood pressure was found even at moderate levels of sleep apnea.”


Chronic indigestion or acid reflux can be placed under the category of GERD and snoring could be one of the culprits. The Mayo Clinic describes the mechanism of GERD, 

“Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) occurs when stomach acid frequently flows back into the tube connecting your mouth and stomach (esophagus). This backwash (acid reflux) can irritate the lining of your esophagus.”

GERD can cause all sorts of painful symptoms during digestion prompting some people to reach for any over-the-counter (OTC) or prescription drug just to make it stop. However, sometimes all you may need to do is address your snoring. 

A study by researchers from Turkey published in the journal Sleep Breath consisted of a prospective, cross-sectional, multi-center analysis of 1,104 patients recruited for a polysomnography (a multi-parametric test used in the study of sleep and as a diagnostic tool in sleep medicine). The study concluded that,

“In this large cohort, the prevalence of GERD was significantly increased in those with primary snoring and OSAS [obstructive sleep apnea syndrome] compared to the general population,”


Depression is another tricky condition that can be addressed from many different angles. Conventional medicine often treats depression with pharmaceutical intervention while holistic remedies use herbs, vitamins, and more natural options. However, increasing the ability to sleep soundly may be a better approach.

Harvard Health School cited a multitude of studies that showed links between various mental illness presentations and OSA. It was found that,

“Studies using different methods and populations estimate that 65% to 90% of adult patients with major depression, and about 90% of children with this disorder, experience some kind of sleep problem. Most patients with depression have insomnia, but about one in five suffer from obstructive sleep apnea,”


Maybe, if you suffer from chronic headaches, you could stop taking ibuprofen or strong pharmaceuticals and treat your snoring issue instead. Constant waking and sleeping can significantly affect the severity and duration of headaches. 

The American Academy of Neurology (AAN) stated in a published paper that, 

“People with chronic daily headache were more than twice as likely to also be chronic snorers than the people with occasional headaches. The result was the same even when adjusting for factors that can affect breathing in sleep, such as body mass index and alcohol intake.”

What to Do About Snoring

If you or someone you know chronically snores it is best to be checked by a doctor. This may include sleeping with a home testing device that digitally transports data to your doctor to determine if you have OSA or other sleep issue causing a chronic sleep/wake cycle. Once this is determined there are various treatment choices. Aside from taking pharmaceuticals which could be addicting and, in the long run, possibly detrimental to your health, you can try a few natural remedies which may include,

  • CPAP – The continuous positive airway pressure machine (CPAP) is a device you wear to bed that forces airflow into your nose to stop the snoring.
  • Weight Loss – Gaining weight could cause fat deposits to develop in your throat that impede breathing. Losing weight has been found to significantly decrease or eliminate snoring.
  • L-Theanine – This amino acid has been found to increase sleep inducing brain chemicals enabling a deeper sleep that surpasses breathing that causes snoring.
  • Melatonin – This natural hormone is produced when it gets dark outside. However, sometimes adding a supplement of melatonin can increase production and induce deeper sleep which may reduce snoring.
  • Lavender – Rubbing this essential oil on certain points (temples, between the eyes, earlobes, wrists) has been linked to calming the CNS (central nervous system) which could help control breathing.

These 4 reasons snoring may be a health risk should make you aware that it is not just an annoying condition, snoring is a warning sign produced by your very own body.