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by cr-admin May 26, 2017

y father emitted thunderous rumbling when he slept and it got louder as he aged. According to Nancy Collop, M.D., a pulmonologist and director of the sleep clinic at Johns Hopkins University Hospital, this happens when airways narrow in sleep, creating resistance in the passageways that connect the nose and mouth to the lungs. The narrower the tube, the greater the pressure needed to establish enough flow. “As we get older, we put on weight. The pattern of weight gain changes and we often gain weight around the neck, so the throat space becomes narrower,” says Rafael Pelayo of the Stanford Sleep Medicine Center. “Muscle tone also decreases, that’s why we snore more.” Though snoring is often the butt of jokes about spouses driven crazy by the noise, the truth is, it can signal obstructive sleep apnea, a cessation of breathing during sleep. (NOTE: Not everyone who snores has apnea.) Hypertension and diabetes, as well as headaches and chronic exhaustion, and more, have been linked to apnea, described by Patrick Strollo, M.D., assistant professor of medicine at the University of Pittsburgh, as being woken by your own snoring five times per night, as well being the root of daytime sleepiness or memory loss – serious problems when performing activities that require alertness. While the typical apnea patient is an overweight, middle-aged/senior adult male. Luckily, there are treatments and serious snorers – male and female, of whatever age -- should consult a physician for help. – Helen Susan Edelman, LiveSmart Project Director, livesmart@classroomenrichment.org; www.facebook.com/crlivesmart

Times Union - Edited and written by Helen Edelman

LiveSmart supports the Classroom Enrichment Fund at the Community Foundation for the Greater Capital Region and is made possible by donations from St. Peter’s Health Partners and Price Chopper, with promotional services provided by the Times Union and WNYT/NewsChannel 13. LiveSmart is compiled by Helen Susan Edelman, Project Director. This project ensures 70,000 students and teachers in the Capital Region have equal access to news content during the school year.