Cancer is a forbidden word that no one wants to talk about. Everyone knows that it is always lingering there in the darkness, waiting to pounce on its next victim, but for some reason we often think that if we do not talk about it, then we will remain hidden from it somehow.
You are probably familiar with many contributors to this potentially deadly disease, such as smoking, obesity, aging, sunlight, chemicals, hormones, some viruses and bacteria, and poor diet, but there is one that many are not aware of: snoring!
Snoring has long been associated with sleep apnea and other health conditions. What many do not realize is that sleeping disorders that disrupt your oxygen flow are directly linked to cancer.
Snoring is not a laughing matter. You may joke about it with your spouse and friends, but it is not a funny condition. It is destroying your health and putting you at risk for cancer.
A study that revealed that people diagnosed with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) have an increased risk of cancer was released by the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health on 20 May 2012.
In previous years, studies have associated sleep disorder breathing (SDB) issues with cardiovascular disease, depression, hypertension, and early death. However, it was not until this case study was released that there was evidence linking it to cancer.
The findings are based on data obtained over the course of 22 years on 1,522 subjects. In addition to this collected data, laboratory tests completed on mice showed that regular oxygen starvation promoted cancerous tumor growth.
Dr. F. Javier Nieto
Dr. F. Javier Nieto from the university’s Department of Population Health Sciences filled the role of lead author for the team. He made some really interesting comments to the “Daily Mail” and “American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.”
A few worth mentioning include:
“If the relationship between SDB and cancer mortality is validated in further studies, the diagnosis and treatment of SDB in patients with cancer might be indicated to prolong survival.”
“The consistency of the evidence from the animal experiments and this new evidence in humans is highly compelling.”
“Ours is the first study to show an association between Sleep Disordered Breathing (SDB) and an elevated risk of cancer mortality in a population-based sample.”
Findings of the study were revealed at the 2012 American Thoracic Society in San Francisco. The presentation focused on sleep disordered breathing, but further explanation was given directed at snorers. Mild snorers had a reduced risk of cancer mortality, but in moderate snorers the risk doubled. Individuals considered to be severe snorers, such as those with OSA, were at a five times greater risk of dying from cancer.
The unveiling did acknowledge previous findings already known, linking sleep apnea to heart attack, stroke, and diabetes. Then, it was revealed that the study showed that individuals with sleep apnea are five times more likely to die from cancer compared to those who do not have a sleeping disorder.
It is no secret that individuals with sleep apnea stop breathing on more than one occasion throughout the night. In some cases, this pause can be minutes. This is extremely dangerous. When the brain is cut off from oxygen blood vessels develop in tissues that are needed to fight disease. When there is an increase in blood vessel production, these vessels can develop into tumors.
Dr. Cynthia Anderson, a Radiation Oncologist with Memorial Hospital discussed the study undertaken by Dr.F.Javier Nieto:
The National Center for Research Resources, National Institute on Aging, and the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) all support the findings of Dr. Nieto’s study.
Dr. Susan B. Shurin, Director of the NHLBI commented on these findings by saying, “These findings provide clues to help further our understanding of the relationship between sleep and health … It will be important to understand the relationship and mechanisms, if the association is confirmed.”
Dr. Ramon Farre participated in this comprehensive study alongside Dr. Nieto at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Farre is University of Barcelona’s professor of physiology. He also presented a study at the San Francisco conference that was separate from Nieto’s, but still relevant. Farre demonstrated that in leaner mice, intermittent hypoxia on cancerous tumor growth is stronger than in obese mice.
Can Sleep Apnea Be Cured By Anti-Snoring Devices?
Approximately 28 million Americans suffer from OSA on some level, but it often goes undiagnosed. So, the common question that often arises is, “Can mouthpieces cure sleep apnea?” The answer is, “No.” Sleep apnea goes beyond snoring; it is a sleeping disorder that involves breathing issues.
The majority of anti-snoring mouthpieces on the market focus solely on snoring, which is resulted from restricted air flow in the throat. This is what causes snoring in most of us.
Anti-snoring oral appliances, such as Good Morning Snore Solution and ZQuiet are effective at controlling snoring. I have personally tried them both with positive results and have provided thorough reviews on them on this site.
Manufacturers of anti-snoring devices are well aware that there are people diagnosed with sleep apnea who use their products to stop snoring. However, due to the delicate nature of this topic it would not be responsible of any mouthpiece manufacturer to market their product as a sleep apnea cure.
Snoring is a common symptom of sleep apnea and many individuals now diagnosed with OSA were once nothing more than simple snorers. However, although sleep apnea and snoring do share similar characteristics they are completely different conditions. I am well aware that individuals with sleep apnea can use mouthpieces, but the products are not designed or marketed to cure OSA.
The study proves that there is a direct link between cancer and snoring, which is pretty scary. Basically, you are at higher risk for developing cancer if you are a moderate to heavy snorer. Based on my own research I truly believe that by taking steps to stop snoring you also reduce your risk for sleep apnea. In return, this reduces your risk for cancer. That is a powerful chain reaction.
If you have been diagnosed with OSA, you may be interested in a discussion regarding mouthpieces in the forum on the Apnea Board Products Reviews website. One gentleman in particular speaks of the positive results he had using SnoreRX for his sleep apnea. Prior to this he used a CPAP machine, which he did not like.
My Final thoughts
Many years ago, snoring was joked about a lot. No one took it seriously because it was not actually associated to any diseases.
Things are different today. This condition is being taken much more seriously because it truly is dangerous. The fact that moderate snorers are twice as likely to die from cancer and heavy snorers are at a five times greater risk is frightening.
If you have been thinking about choosing a solution to finally do something about your snoring, but you have been putting it off, maybe this study is the motivation you need to take action.
If you still need something a little convincing, read my article discussing the link between snoring and heart disease. The study was completed over six years and released in 2012. It is also worth a read.