Monday, September 18, 2006
If I Were A Hyena I'd Eat Your Head
Snoring is definitely not an evolutionary advantage.
A few hundred thousand years ago emitting a sound like a lawn mower every few seconds would draw every predator within ear shot.
And the snorer is as his most vulnerable. He'd wake up with sabre tooth tiger fangs sticking out of the back of his head.
Snoring is apparently another one of those unexpected results of civilization. We can now safely snore, in the sense that we need not worry about hyenas with sharp ears.
However, loud snoring is associated with obstructive sleep apnea. This is a condition in which your floppy soft palate seals off your windpipe, almost waking you up, over and over and over.
It increases the risk of heart problems, high blood pressure, and falling asleep at any opportunity, sort of like the actors in the mattress ads.
There are non-surgical ways to effectively treat sleep apnea. Basically, you strap a mask over your face connected to a pump that blows air down your throat all night.
What does not work are devices designed to pull your nostrils open. Of course open nostrils are good, but snoring has zippo to do with the nose, and everything to do with the floppy tissue at the back of your throat.
For cripe's sake, get a mask.