The Social Impact Of Sleep Apnea And Snoring

Heavy snoring can often be a symptom of obstructive sleep apnea which is a common serious condition that causes interruptions in breathing during sleep. The symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea can significantly reduce a person’s quality of life and have an obvious impact on work, family, and social life.

Snoring affects the sleeping cycle therefore reducing deep, quality sleep becoming more shallow, fragmented, and un-refreshing. This is then translated into poor daytime function. The person may appear to be lazy, drowsy, and not helpful around the house. Intimacy levels are also affected; this can cause a lot of conflict and difficulty in the relationship where the bed partner may experience sleepless nights and fatigue. Excessive daytime sleepiness is frequent in patients with sleep apnea, this can make it difficult for them to be productive, and their employment might be in jeopardy.


Patients with sleep apnea are more likely to fall asleep at inappropriate times such as driving a car while being sleepy and sometimes the results are fatal. Moreover, depression, anxiety, and irritability are very common among people with untreated sleeping apnea. Depression makes it hard for them to maintain relationships with those around them.

People with sleep apnea are less likely to engage in social activities, especially physical exercise because they are too tired. Impaired cognitive functions such as memory loss, amnesia of events and lack of concentration are also very common.

In summary, sleep apnea is associated with several daytime symptoms, significant deficits, and negative impacts on personal, intellectual, and physical performance combined with the well-being and quality of life for both the patient and his family. It can also affect finances since patients with sleep apnea could have greater rates of hospitalization and other healthcare costs. The importance of resolving any snoring issue should not be swept under the rug and needs to be taken care of as soon as possible.


A Different Approach

A holistic approach to healing.

Complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) is defined by the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine as “a group of diverse healthcare systems, practices, and products that are not considered part of conventional medicine”. Many patients with asthma use CAMs as an attempt to reduce asthma-related impairment.

The appeal of treating asthma with vitamins, natural herbal treatments, exercise programs, and acupuncture are some of the many non-traditional approaches to asthma care. These unconventional treatments offer an approach that feels more wholesome, using substances found in the natural world seems safer to patients, and also consistent with their culture and beliefs.

The evidence is still insufficient to recommend most complementary and alternative medicines for asthma. The most commonly reported CAM used among Asthma patients was breathing techniques. These techniques include Buteyko breathing and inspiratory muscle training, both which provide the tools to consciously reduce the rate of breathing, as well as increase the overall volume of air taken in with each breath (increasing lung capacity).

Caffeine appears to improve airways function and relieve the symptoms of asthma for up to four hours after consumption.

Herbal remedies which include the use of plants and plant extracts to treat asthma.

Note: patients must be aware while using some herbal treatments because they may contain harmful ingredients or may interact with other pharmaceutical products.

Antioxidants such as magnesium, vitamin C, and vitamin E may have some effect on asthma. Also Omega-3 fatty acids and vitamin D.

Meditation and yoga (relaxation therapy) tend to improve breathing and help relieve some symptoms.

Acupuncture: commonly used due to low cost and ease of accessibility, no reliable data supported the efficacy of it and its limited effect of treating asthma.

In summary, CAM interventions have been reported to provide a form of benefit in terms of relieving symptoms, scientific evidence exists with regard to some CAM therapies, yet there are many questions that remain unanswered.