A certain amount of snoring can occur if there is a mild level of resistance in the upper airways that has an effect on a person’s airflow.
If there is an increase in the resistance of airflow, breathing can cause transient arousal from sleep due to the struggles the person makes to hang onto ventilation that is adequate.
When this happens it is usually not an issue that will cause the blood’s oxygen level to lower, which is known as hypoxia. Instead, this is a problem that is referred to in the medical field as UARS or upper airway resistance syndrome.
When there is even more of an increase in resistance of airflow, sleep is much more fragmented and disturbances happen much more frequently. This is because the effort put forth for ventilation is unable to stay up with the resistance required to keep good oxygen levels.
The result is a reduction in oxygen levels found in the person’s blood. When this problem arises, it is referred to as obstructive sleep apnea hypopnea syndrome.
How is Snoring Determined to be a Medical Problem?
There are quite a few different indications that snoring may be caused from a medical problem a person is suffering from and these are often reported by the patient’s spouse.
Jerking or movements such as leg kicking is often an indication that a person is suffering from restless leg syndrome or periodic limb movement disorder. When a person gasps, stops breathing, or begins choking, it is often a warning sign that they have obstructive sleep apnea.
In order for conditions such as these to be diagnosed, the patient will likely be referred to a physician that specializes in each of these conditions.