Is snoring a symptom of sleep apnea?

This question was asked in Boynton Beach, Florida on 07/03/2012.
I snore and sometimes it wakes me up. Could I possibly have sleep apnea?

Doctors Answers (2)

J. Douglas Hudson, MD, DABSM
Answered on: 7/10/2012

Snoring is the most common symptom of obstructive sleep apnea. It is present to some degree in 99% of persons with the disorder. You can snore and not have sleep apnea but your awakenings with snoring strongly suggests that you have sleep apnea. You should discuss this with your physician who will likely arrange a sleep study to make a definitive diagnosis.

Richard J. Schumann Jr., MD
Answered on: 7/9/2012 1

Yes, snoring is commonly associated with sleep apnea. When the upper airway muscles relax during sleep they can narrow the airway passage space between the base of the tongue and the soft palate and hypopharynx. When air is inspired through this narrowed airway the vibration make the familiar snoring sound. When the narrowed airway collapses and recurs more than 5 times per hour then sleep apnea occurs and need to be treated with an oral appliance or PAP ( positive airway pressure ) system to remedy the problem.