Recently Dr. Oz responded to a question about excessive snoring that was posed by Joyce, a member of his audience.
But Joyce wasn’t concerned about her husband’s snoring. She is the one who snores.
“Why am I snoring so much,” Joyce asked. “What is the problem?”
Dr. Oz recommended weight loss as one way to reduce her snoring. He also said that avoiding alcohol can help.
But he surprised Joyce with his final advice. He suggested that she take singing lessons.
“You learn to control the muscles in the upper throat – the same muscles that collapse (and cause snoring),” he explained. “It’s like weightlifting your muscles.”
Last year the Sleep Education blog reported that there are a variety of treatment options for snoring. But snoring is also a common sign of obstructive sleep apnea.
Most often this kind of snoring is loud and frequent. It tends to be followed by silent pauses in breathing. These pauses may end with a loud choking or snorting sound.
Joyce’s own description of her snoring suggests that she might have OSA.
“Snoring enough to disturb the entire family,” she said. “And if I even snore a little louder, I might disturb the entire neighborhood.”
Sleep apnea is a serious health problem that requires medical attention. CPAP and oral appliances are the two most common treatments. Another option is surgery, which is a common solution for children with sleep apnea.
You might be able to reduce the severity of sleep apnea by following Dr. Oz’s advice to strengthen the throat muscles. Studies suggest that it might help to play a wind instrument or use tongue and throat exercises.
But these methods are unlikely to cure sleep apnea. You should contact an AASM-accredited sleep center for help if you or a loved one snores loudly.
Read more about sleep apnea in women. Learn how women may be surprised by sleep apnea. Read about the signs of OSA in women.