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The most common sleep disorder is snoring.
Snoring effects 18-20% of infants, which is a higher percentage than other childhood snoring – they seem to grow out of it gradually, and then only return to snoring as adults.
Children and adolescents
The data coming through indicates that children with poor sleep and snoring will have a lower IQ, not just during the sleep deprivation period, but subsequent to that.
A study in America found that children who were identified by their parents as snorers at ages four and five had lower than average IQs.? (Up to 10.3% of all children experience snoring occasionally and approximately 5.6% of children are habitual snorers.)
Growth spurts have also been known to happen after children with apnoea have been treated.
Snoring afflicts about 44 percent of men and 30 per cent of women.? (About 44 percent snore occasionally, and around 25% snore habitually).
Snoring is linked with sleep deprivation, depression and aggression, daytime exhaustion, hypertension and cardio-vascular disease, hearing loss, digestive dysfunction and even impotence.
Nearly 85% of snorers exceed 38 decibels of sound, with loud snorers getting up to about 90 decibels, which is similar to a loud yell!
People tend to snore when they are on their backs according to Edward Stepanski, director of the Sleep Disorder Centre at Rush-Presbyterian-St. Luke’s Medical Centre in Chicago.? He suggests placing a tennis ball in a sock and pinning it to your pyjamas right between your shoulder blades.? It sounds punishing, but he says it will prompt you to roll back on to your side, without waking you up.
Numerous studies indicate that it is more likely in overweight people, and generally gets worse with age.
About one third of adults over the age of 30 are snorers, that number increasing to about 40% by middle age. Source: The British Medical Journal, 1997.
If you feel that you are being woken up by your snoring, you wake up a number of times during the night, or you have disturbed breathing patterns, please refer to the section on Sleep Apnoea for further information.
The British United Provident Association has stated that not all individuals who snore have sleep apnoea, and that not all individuals with sleep apnoea snore.
According to the American National Sleep Foundation sleep apnoea may be present in up to 40 percent of those adults who experience snoring.