Snoring is a vibration of your airway that creates sound. This vibration can come from any part of your airway, with the nose and the throat being the two main sources. Custom oral appliances from our Detroit sleep dentist Dr. Jeffrey S. Haddad are effective for most snoring in the throat, but won’t work if snoring comes from your nose.

So how do you know if your snoring comes from your nose? Here are a few factors to consider.

Is Snoring Because of A Deviated Septum?

woman plugging her ears while man snores next to her

Deviated septum is one of the main reasons why people in Detroit have chronic nasal snoring. The septum is the bone that divides the nose into two halves. If your septum is deviated, one side is larger than the other or perhaps both are narrowed at different points. This restricts the airflow and leads to turbulence, which creates vibration and therefore the sound of deviated septum snoring.

A deviated septum is usually a developmental condition, and most people who have it have a family history of it. Of course, your parents or grandparents might not have been diagnosed.

How do you know if you have deviated septum snoring? The main way is to talk to a doctor. However, you might suspect deviated septum snoring if you consistently have difficulty breathing through one or both nostrils. You might also get frequent nosebleeds, and nasal snoring is a common symptom of the condition.

Deviated septum snoring responds well to surgical treatment in Detroit. The procedure is called a septoplasty. It straightens the septum to improve breathing day and night. Once you finish recovery from your septoplasty, deviated septum snoring should resolve.

Did You Break Your Nose?

Another reason why people in Detroit develop nasal snoring is that they broke their nose at some point in the past. When the broken nose heals, it doesn’t always restore the full size of the air passages. This can lead to constriction of the nose, which then leads to snoring. Sometimes breaking your nose leads to deviated septum snoring.

This includes breaking your nose as part of a rhinoplasty (nose job). While sometimes a nose job can be used to fix constricted airways, not all plastic surgeons are paying attention to airway architecture when they’re focused on changing the appearance of your nose.

If you’ve noticed trouble breathing and more snoring since your rhinoplasty, it’s likely that your surgeon created an obstruction in your nasal passages.

Do You Breathe Through Your Mouth?

Healthy breathing should be through your nose most of the time. People in Detroit who breathe through their mouths most of the time have some type of obstruction in their nasal passages. This obstruction means that you likely have nasal snoring whenever you are breathing through your nose.

Symptoms of mouth breathing at night include:

  • Dry mouth
  • Sore throat
  • Foul taste in the mouth or bad morning breath
  • Frequent tooth decay or gum disease

However, sometimes people breathe through their mouths because of obstructive sleep apnea. If you have symptoms of mouth breathing most mornings, consider whether you might have sleep apnea.

Do You Have Chronic Allergies or Illness?

Another reason why your nose might cause snoring is that chronic allergies and illness could restrict the airways in the nose because of inflammation and mucus buildup. Of course, this can lead to restriction anywhere in the airway, but since the nostrils are narrower, they tend to become constricted first.

It’s a good idea to take steps to address common household allergens to combat snoring in Detroit. Change furnace filters regularly, bathe pets as recommended, and dust frequently. If you suspect allergies, consider getting an allergen test. It might turn out that you have some minor food allergies that play into your snoring. If you do have food allergies, avoid eating these foods in the evenings.

Snoring Has a Whistling High-Pitched Sound

The sound of snoring relates to the vibrating tissue. Smaller airways tend to create higher-pitched sounds. Think about a small instrument like a piccolo and the sounds it makes, compared to the sound of a larger instrument like a bassoon. It’s the same with your airway. When your nostrils are vibrating, the sound is more likely to be higher-pitched. Vibration in the throat, which is a much broader air passage, tends toward a more bass, penetrating rumble.

This is why louder snoring is more likely to signal sleep apnea risk. It means snoring is more associated with the throat, which is where serious airway collapse is more likely. This airway collapse is what causes obstructive sleep apnea.

Don’t Waste Time and Money on Nasal Solutions

You shouldn’t ignore snoring, especially if someone is complaining about it. Looking at these different aspects of nasal snoring should give you a good idea of whether your nose is responsible for your snoring or not. If your nose isn’t the problem, don’t waste time or money on snoring solutions in Detroit that focus on the nose, such as nasal strips, or sprays. Surgery is a good choice for deviated septum snoring or snoring caused by a broken nose. If your snoring isn’t likely linked to your nose, look at solutions designed to open up your throat, including oral appliances.

To learn whether an oral appliance can improve your snoring, please call (248) 480-0085 today for an appointment with Detroit-area sleep dentist Dr. Jeffrey S. Haddad at the Michigan Center for TMJ & Sleep Wellness in Rochester Hills.