Noisy breathing during sleeping has been believed to be a nuisance and one of the most intolerable of human habits; this is what we call snoring. Epidemiological studies show that 50% of snores are not just any simple snoring but have relatively some uncontrolled sleep disruption. To some, it may just be a simple nuisance when not accompanied by other symptoms. Moreover, it may be a part of a symptom indicating a disease of sleep-disordered breathing. Here are some factors that make a person snore:
- Nasal obstruction – causes may be conditions such as colds or sinusitis.
- Poor muscle tone in the throat or tongue – it occurs during deep sleep or taking of sleeping tablet that may cause the muscles to relax.
- Being overweight – it can make the throat larger and requires extra pressure on the breathing passages.
Surgical method is not recommended until a non-surgical treatment is proved unsuccessful. Below are different types of surgical approaches to snoring:
- Tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy – if the cause of airway obstruction is found to be enlarged tonsils and adenoids; to take them out, surgery is suggested.
- Injection snoreplasty – when snoring is caused by floppiness of soft palate, injecting scleroses is recommended.
- Laser assisted uvulopalatoplasty (LAUP) – in order to widen the airway and to prevent the structures to vibrate during breathing, the surgery to remove the uvula and part of the soft palate is suggested.
- Septoplasty and trimming of nasal turbinate – if structural abnormalities in nasal passages are identified, this surgery is applied. The surgery straightens the cartilage partition that divides the nostrils and reduces the size of turbinate.
- Palatal stiffening or somnoplasty – this procedure uses laser or cauterizer to make small burn areas on the soft palate.
- Pillar procedure – this is a minimal operation that involves insertion of palatal implants. The procedure can be performed in an outpatient setting.
Snoring can be a form of sleep-disorder disease. Nevertheless, it can be prevented, and if symptoms persist and all other treatments are used, surgical approach is the last resort.