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Snoring is a chronic problem that has long-term health effects and can impact both you and your partner’s ability get a restful night of sleep. In recent years, sleep experts have focused on treating snoring with a wide variety of medical and natural methods. As more information has been gathered about the causes and effects of snoring, new technological advancements have been introduced which offer relief from snoring and can help you get a better night’s sleep.
One of the biggest causes of snoring is nasal congestion that builds up during the night. There has been a significant success with nasal strips and sprays that help to keep your nasal passages open and unobstructed while you sleep. Most people are familiar with the strips that go across the bridge of the nose, but recent advancements have added the Expiratory Positive Airway Pressure (EPAP) method to the list of nasal strip products. These EPAP devices act as a valve that moderates your breathing and the air pressure in your nasal passages to keep your throat open, preventing up to 76% of the vibrations that cause snoring.In addition to nasal strips and sprays that treat congestion, many doctors also recommend seeking treatment for ongoing allergies. Treating congestion by itself is merely dealing with the symptoms, but will not relieve the actual cause. By getting help with your allergies you will actually get rid of the problem at the most basic level, preventing congestion altogether.
Some doctors recommend the use of a mouthpiece or chin strap to stop loud snoring. The basic premise of the chin strap is that it forces your mouth closed, causing you to breathe through your nose and preventing the passage of vibrations through your open throat as you sleep with your mouth open. These devices have been met with some resistance as they can be uncomfortable and difficult to keep in place while you sleep.By contrast, there are now numerous mouthpiece options available on the market. Mouthguards come in two varieties: mandibular advancement devices (MAD) and tongue stabilizing devices (TSD). The MAD mouthguard uses pressure to push your lower jaw up and away from your throat. When most people sleep on their side or their backs, the muscles in the neck and throat relax, allowing the passageway to get blocked. By keeping your jaw muscles tense and out of the way, your throat will stay open allowing for easier breathing. The TSD mouthguard has a similar goal as the MAD one, but it is designed to create suction that holds your tongue out of the way while you sleep. These devices are relatively inexpensive and can be a long-lasting and comfortable solution that has been proven effective.
For people who are looking for a permanent and effective means of reducing their snoring immediately, there are several procedures available. Many sinus clearing treatments are designed to widen and strengthen the nasal passages so that they are no longer susceptible to blockage from mucus and other buildup in the body.Balloon sinuplasty is the latest technological advancement that involves inserting a tiny elastic balloon into the sinus passages and inflating it until it forces the walls of the sinus passage to open up and stay widened through pressure and restructuring. Other surgical procedures include the correction of deviated septums to correct air passages and uvulectomy to remove the tissues in the back of the throat that contribute to snoring.As doctors continue to study the short- and long-term effects that snoring has on health, there are more and more treatment options becoming available to the general public. In cases where simple over-the-counter nasal strips or medications are not effective, certain medical devices may prove successful. Either a MAD or TSD mouthguard is one inexpensive way to physically modify the throat and airways for better breathing and sleeping. However, people who still struggle with snoring after trying these medical devices may seek out sinus and airway procedures that can provide immediate and long term relief of symptoms.If you are interested in balloon sinuplasty and would like more information about how it can help you sleep better, please contact the American Sinus Institute today. We will be happy to answer any questions you have about the procedure and its benefits for your health and sleep.