Common Causes of Snoring

Since 2009, Dr. John Krehlik has served the Anchorage, Alaska community as a board-certified physician specializing in various sleep issues and disorders. Patients of Dr. John Krehlik may receive a home sleep test in order to diagnose sleep apnea or other causes of snoring.

Snoring occurs when an individual’s airway has, for some reason, relaxed, narrowed, or even collapsed. Once the airway has narrowed, a person’s breathing will become louder and more forceful as it travels through the compressed air passage. This can be caused by external factors or ongoing issues inside the body. For example, consumption of alcohol, particularly later in the evening, can cause the throat muscles to become overly relaxed and allow for airway obstructions that would normally be repelled.

Ongoing or temporary nasal congestion can also lead to a night—or many nights—of snoring. A deviated nasal septum is especially likely to bring about snoring. However, the causes behind snoring are not always so banal. Sleep apnea, for example, is a potentially serious health issue in which a person’s airway tissue can partially or completely block the air path. In extreme cases, sleep apnea can prevent a person from breathing altogether.