Tag Archives: British Snoring & Sleep Apnoea Association

What is Sleep Apnoea?

There has been much discussion in recent weeks about sleep apnoea since John Cleese tweeted a photograph to see if he suffered from the condition. The image showed Cleese covered in wires as part of an experiment to check whether he had the condition. So, what exactly is sleep apnoea?

The NHS describes the condition as one that ‘causes interrupted breathing during sleep‘, with two types of breathing interruption:

  1. apnoea – the muscles and soft tissues in the throat relax and collapse sufficiently to cause a total blockage of the airway; it is called an apnoea when the airflow is blocked for 10 seconds or more
  2. hypopnoea – a partial blockage of the airway that results in an airflow reduction of greater than 50% for 10 seconds or more

Diagnosing the condition

There are many different ways of assessing whether someone has sleep apnoea. People may complain of excessive daytime sleepiness, accompanied by irritability and restlessness. More often than not though, it is usually a partner or someone else who recognises the symptoms before the person does. The British Snoring & Sleep Apnoea Association has identified common symptoms, which include:

  1. Extremely loud heavy snoring, often interrupted by pauses and gasps
  2. Excessive daytime sleepiness, e.g., falling asleep at work, whilst driving, during conversation or when watching TV. (This should not be confused with excessive tiredness with which we all suffer from time to time)
  3. Irritability, short temper
  4. Morning headaches
  5. Forgetfulness
  6. Changes in mood or behaviour
  7. Anxiety or depression

A person with OSA will usually have no memory of breathlessness, so they are often unaware that they are not getting a proper night’s sleep. More often than not, it is a partner or someone else who recognises the symptoms before the person does.

Treating Sleep Apnoea

Fortunately Obstructive Sleep Apnoea  is treatable with a variety of treatment options available to help reduce the symptoms. Making changes to one’s lifestyle, such as losing weight, stopping smoking or cutting down on alcohol , can often help mild cases of sleep apnoea. Sleeping on your side, rather than on your back, may also help to relieve the symptoms of OSA. Other environmental changes  include reducing the amount of light and noise in your bedroom, avoid watching TV or using electronic devices in the bedroom,  and building in some time to relax before going to bed. Of course, it’s important that you are sleeping on the right bed and mattress are providing you with the right comfort and support levels. If you’re not sure if your bed comes up to scratch, take the Bed MOT to find out. For those that experience a more severe condition, breathing apparatus while sleeping may be used.

What to do next

At Dalzell’s of Markethill we want to make sure that you are getting a great night’s sleep. For us that starts with the right bed and mattress so that you get the the maximum benefit from your sleeping environment. Visit in-store today at Dalzells, your local Bedding Experts in N. Ireland. Located in Markethill, with plenty of free on-street parking and just off the A28 between Armagh and Newry, we’re a short 15 minute drive from Portadown, 20 minutes from Dungannon and Banbridge. You can of course always place your order and gain expert advice from our experienced team over the phone on 028 3755 1260 or even by Email.  Whatever way you shop with us you can be assured of A Great Deal and Expert AdviceWhat’s more we offer a Free Delivery and Free Collection and Recycling of Your Old Bed Service across Northern Ireland and Counties Louth, Monaghan and Dublin, with competitive rates across the rest of the UK and Ireland.


Is snoring keeping you awake at night?


Have you ever lain awake at night or been disrupted from your sleep by a partner that snores? Perhaps you are the person that is snoring and it is affecting your partner’s sleeping pattern. Whichever way, snoring can have a significant impact on our ability to get a good night’s sleep and potentially affect our relationships. Help is at hand, however. Monday marked the start of National Stop Snoring Week, an annual event promoting general awareness that nobody need suffer as a result of snoring: it is a condition that can be treated.

What is snoring?

The British Snoring & Sleep Apnoea Association defines snoring as: ‘… a coarse sound made by vibrations of the soft palate and other tissues of the mouth, nose and throat (upper airway). It is caused by a partial blockage of the upper airway.’

Our chances of snoring can be increased by factors such as being overweight, alcohol, and smoking.  People with severe snoring may have obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA)a condition where the airways become temporarily blocked during sleep.


How many of us snore?*

  1. 41.5% of the UK adult population snore.
  2. There are approximately 15 million snorers in the UK.
  3. Snoring affects 30 million people in the UK.
  4. There are 10.4 million males and 4.5 million females who snore
  5. The ratio of male to female snorers is 2.3:1
  6. Figures from a recent survey found men are louder snorers than women.
  7. 58% of snorers are between 50-59 years of age.

* (Credit: British Snoring & Sleep Apnoea Association)

Snoring self-help tips:

There are a number of lifestyle changes and sleep hygiene tips that can help minimise snoring:

  1. Try and maintain a healthy diet and weight.
  2. Try to sleep on your side rather than your back.
  3. Avoid alcohol before going to bed.
  4. Quit or cut down on smoking.
  5. Incorporate exercise into your daily routine as this helps to promote sleep.
  6. Keep your nasal passages clear so that you breathe in through your nose rather than your mouth.
  7. Try and keep your bedroom at the right temperature – between 16 and 18 degrees centigrade.
  8. Keep your bedroom free from distractions – mobile phones, computers / laptops and the television can all contribute to sleep disruption.
  9. Make sure your bed is providing you with the right support. A bigger bed may help with less partner disturbance.
  10. Create a relaxing sleeping environment by keeping the bedroom uncluttered and not too bright at night.

What to do next:

As a Sleep Council Accredited Retailer, Dalzell’s is committed to providing our customers with expert advice and support on getting a good night’s sleep.  If you are concerned about you or your partner’s snoring it may be helpful to talk to your GP, pharmacist or other professional bodies, including the British  Snoring & Sleep Apnoea Association.  Visit us in-store, call 028 3755 1260email or go online where you’ll find lots of information on getting a good night’s sleep, best buys and choosing the right bed for you. A short drive from Newry and located convenient to Lisburn and Belfast, we’re perfectly placed to accommodate your new bed purchase. What’s more, we provide a Free Collection and Recycling of Your Old Bed service and Free Delivery of your New Bed throughout our Free Delivery Zone, which extends across Northern Ireland, and Counties Louth, Monaghan and Dublin, in the rest of Ireland.