If you snore, be warned! According to a recent study, people who snore are more likely than smokers, obese individuals, or even those with high LDL levels to have carotid artery problems. When the lining of this artery grows thick, it is actually a precursor to hardened arteries which subsequently result in many vascular complications.

Therefore, it is necessary to recognize snoring as a warning sign, and not just something that aggravates your spouse. No, switching to the couch isn’t going to solve the underlying medical problems that could be brewing – a better solution to your snoring is to seek medical attention. The reverberations caused by snoring actually damage the carotid artery, even if you don’t have a condition like sleep apnea.

This really should not be a surprise – after all, sleep apnea has been connected to heart problems for quite some time. Now this latest study has taken things a step further and shown that snoring itself does damage.

The study consisted of patients of varying ages – none of them had OSA (apnea), so the study focused only on the effects of snoring. Over 50 patients participated in the research. Snorers showed a more significant thickness in the carotid than those who did not snore, while other risk factors like diabetes, heart disease, and high blood pressure did not seem to have any effect on this thickness according to the results.

We spend so much time thinking of snoring as an embarrassing personal problem without any other real side effects that many of us choose to ignore it, hide it, and find ways to cover it up. The fact is that it can be a serious medical condition with future implications for health, and it needs to be taken care of.

Hopefully, this study will remove some of the stigma of snoring by showing that it is a significant health concern, thus motivating more snorers to seek treatment. Research aimed at trying to connect snoring with various potential heart problems continues.