If I Snore, Do I Have
Sleep Apnea?


Please note: Sleep apnea is a chronic medical condition. The information in this article is not intended to diagnose sleep apnea. If you think you have sleep apnea, consult your doctor.

While not all snoring is related to sleep apnea, snoring combined with pauses in breathing can be a symptom of sleep apnea.

According to an article by Sleep Specialist Lynn D’Andrea, published in Scientific American, data from a sleep study conducted in Wisconsin showed “that 44% of all men surveyed and 28% of all women surveyed were habitual snorers. Overall, 4% of these men and 2% of these women had snoring that was associated with obstructive sleep apnea.”1

What is sleep apnea?

According to the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, “Sleep apnea is a common disorder in which you have one or more pauses in breathing or shallow breaths while you sleep.”2

Symptoms of sleep apnea include loud snoring followed by periods of silence, which are pauses in breathing that can last from a few seconds to minutes.

The most common type of sleep apnea is known as obstructive sleep apnea, which means the breathing pauses are caused by airway blockage. The airway is blocked by soft tissue in the back of the throat collapsing, which either partially or completely closes the airway.3

When you pause in your breathing, your level of oxygen saturation—or the amount of oxygen in your blood—decreases. The lack of oxygen causes you to wake enough to open your airway and, as a result, you can breath again. A loud snort or choking sound often occurs when breathing resumes.4

Because it occurs during sleep, most people who have sleep apnea are not aware they have it. They may notice daytime sleepiness, or may sometimes be awakened by their own loud snoring, but generally, a family member or bed partner notices the symptoms of sleep apnea.

Are some people more at risk for sleep apnea?

Certain factors can increase your risk of sleep apnea. The following is excerpted from the National Institute of Heart, Lung and Blood Institute’s website5:

  • More than half of those with sleep apnea are overweight.
  • Sleep apnea is more common in men.
  • Your risk of sleep apnea increases as you get older.
  • Ten percent of those over 65 have sleep apnea.
  • Women are more likely to have sleep apnea during pregnancy and after menopause.
  • Sleep apnea is more common in African Americans, Hispanics, and Pacific Islanders.
  • If someone in your family has sleep apnea, you’re more likely to develop it.
  • People who have small airways in their noses, throats, or mouths, or who have allergies or congestion are more likely to have sleep apnea.
  • Children with enlarged tonsil tissues, or who are overweight may have sleep apnea.

Can Brez anti-snoring device help
with sleep apnea?

There are two types of snoring:

  • Primary snoring, or snoring without sleep apnea
  • Apneic snoring, or snoring accompanied by pauses in breathing

Brez anti-snoring device can help significantly reduce or stop primary snoring, or snoring without sleep apnea.

If you think you may have sleep apnea, consult your doctor.

Fit Brez
If you snore without spleep apnea: Start your snore-free life today.

1“Why Do People Snore?,” Scientific American Website, www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=why-do-people-snore, September 21, 2010, Lynn A. D’Andrea, Sleep Specialist, University of Michigan Medical School
2 “Your Guide to Better Sleep,” National Institute of Health’s National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute: Item No.: 06-5271, p.42, published 2006, Margie Patlak.
3 National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute website, September 21, 2010; www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/dci/Diseases/SleepApnea/SleepApnea_WhatIs.html
4 Mayo Clinic website, September 21, 2010; www.mayoclinic.com/health/snoring/DS00297/DSECTION=causes, Mayo Clinic Staff
5 National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute website, September 21, 2010; www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/dci/Diseases/SleepApnea/SleepApnea_WhoIsAtRisk.html