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Snoring can be one of the biggest
bugbears in relationships, as partners struggle to drop off while
their loved one rests peacefully, but not quietly. A story in
today's Daily Mail has found that there is, however, a more serious
side to this, as chronic snoring is often a sign of sleep apnoea.
The condition affects nearly one in 20 people and causes the
tissues in the throat to collapse, blocking the airways.

Not only can this result in loud
snoring, but it can cause you to stop breathing for short periods,
depriving the body of oxygen.The over-70s are particularly at risk
- the condition affects one in five in this group - as are people
who are overweight, as extra tissue around the neck puts pressure
on the airways.

One of the most common treatments is
a type of mask worn at night, called a continuous positive airway
pressure (CPAP) machine. This delivers compressed air to prevent
the airway from closing.
However, many
sufferers find the masks uncomfortable and simply stop using

However, a new generation of CPAP
machines, which are lighter, quieter and more comfortable, may
help. These include the Philips Nuance mask, which is placed on the
end of the nose, rather than completely over it.

Another new CPAP mask is the Nasal
Aire II, from InnoMed Technologies, which consists only of a nose
piece with inserts for the nostrils, removing the need for
headgear. It costs £139. 

What do you think? Is your partner a
snorer? Is it worth the investment? Let us know on Facebook
or Twitter.