Snoring & Sleep Apnea Treatment Overview
Snoring is the sound produced by upper airway during sleep. An obstruction in upper airway causes the walls of throat to collapse and soft palate flutters violent to produce the sound of snoring. It is more common among elderly and men as compared to women and increases while lying on back as the tongue fall back, blocking the air passage.
Effect Of Snoring & Sleep Apnea
- Fall in oxygen saturation of blood.
- Cessation of breathing for short periods (Apnoea)
- Sudden awakening from sleep, gasping to breathe air.
- Poor quality sleep at night.
- Day time sleepiness.
- Decreased brain and heart functioning.
A combination of all these effects with snoring is known as Sleep Apnoea. The severity of sleep apnoea is assessed by a Sleep Study. Probes for ECG, EEG, SpO2, respiration, BP etc are connected to the patient during a night sleep. Patient will need to undergo ENT examination, endoscopy of nose, nasopharynx and throat in awake & induced sleep and CT of head neck to identify the level of obstruction. Based on these evaluations, patient is advised to either use a CPAP machine or undergo surgery to relieve the obstruction.
Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) machine consists of a mask to be worn on face during sleep. The mask is connected to a machine which pumps air into the airway, prevent it from collapsing during each breathe. Thus, avoiding snoring and sleep apnoea.
Surgery for sleep apnoea is based on level of obstruction and includes a variety of procedures like Septoplasty, Uvulopalatopharyngoplasty (UPPP), Adenotonsillectomy, Maxillary or Mandibular advancement and Base of Tongue reduction. The ENT specialist tailors the surgery to the needs of each patient.
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