What’s behind snoring? Find out, sleep better

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Dr. Erin Elliott of Sleep Better Northwest has seen it time and again: Tired people denying that they sleep poorly — and these same people realizing how wrong they were after experiencing a truly restful night’s sleep.

“Snoring and insomnia are not normal, and there is a solution,” she said, adding that both conditions are often linked to sleep-disordered breathing. “Most people underestimate how tired they are as well as deny snoring or poor sleep. Even if they are getting the quantity they need, they should also be getting the quality.”

Snoring and insomnia are not normal, and there is a solution.

Dr. Erin Elliott, Sleep Better Northwest

Dr. Elliott has seen insomnia treated with sleeping pills, which often masks the underlying problem. She has seen snoring dismissed as annoying but harmless. But the potential for oxygen interruption in both cases is a very dangerous condition.

The solution starts with a sleep test that can be done in the comforts of one’s own home.

“Other than a lack of awareness, the three big things that hold people back from a solution are testing, treatment and money,” Dr. Elliott said. “The testing can be done at home, treatment could be an appliance (not a CPAP machine or surgery), and medical, not dental, insurances cover it, minimizing out-of-pocket expenses.”

NOTE: A version of this article first appeared in the 2019 Liberty Lake Yearbook.

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