Being a loud snorer could weaken your skull, researchers have found.
People with the bedtime disorder sleep apnea, linked to noisy nighttime breathing, have much less bone protecting their brain.
An estimated 22 million people in the US have apnea — and about 80 percent go undiagnosed, according to sleepapnea.org.
Now it has been found sufferers are prone to thinning of the skull — raising the risk of a potentially fatal condition known as spontaneous cerebrospinal fluid leak (sCSF-L).
In sCSF-L, a colorless, odorless substance streams from the nose, caused by a hole in tissue surrounding the brain and spinal cord.
US scientists at the University of Indiana studied 114 participants and found those with apnea had “significantly thinner” skulls — by up to 1.23 mm. Surgeon Dr. Rick Nelson called the erosion “clinically meaningful” as thinning of 1 mm may be enough to cause sCSF-L.
He said: “Patients with skull thinning may be at increased risk of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) and should be considered for screening.”
“OSA may contribute to the development of disorders related to skull thinning.”