Nasal & Sinus Center

Snoring Treatment Options

How will my physician investigate my snoring?

If you are considering treatment for your snoring, it is essential to rule out obstructive sleep apnea. A careful examination of your medical history will be done. An overnight sleep test is the accepted method of evaluating your snoring and breathing patterns. Your doctor will discuss the diagnostic alternatives available and recommend the best test for you.

Am I a candidate for radio frequency of the soft palate?

If you snore loudly and frequently, and do not have other breathing disorders, the somnoplasty procedure may be the solution for you. Your physician will be able to evaluate your situation and determine whether or not you are a candidate for the somnoplasty procedure.

How will my snoring be treated?

Non-surgical approaches include weight loss and other lifestyle modifications or the use of an oral appliance to reposition the jaw during sleep. A variety of traditional snoring remedy surgeries are available to reduce the excess tissue. A revolutionary procedure treating snoring is now available. The somnoplasty procedure gently reduces and stiffens the tissues in the soft palate and uvula, and does so without the pain associated with conventional and laser-assisted surgeries.

What is radio frequency of the soft palate?

Somnoplasty uses low-power, low-temperature radiofrequency energy to treat a well-defined area in the uvula or soft palate. The procedure takes place in either a physician's office or an outpatient setting. The procedure is performed under local anesthesia, and typically takes less than 30 minutes. Radiofrequency energy is delivered beneath the surface layer of the soft palate called the mucosa. The treated tissue is heated just enough to create an area of coagulation. Over the next four to six weeks, the treated tissue is naturally removed by the body, reducing the volume and stiffening the area responsible for your snoring. There may be some swelling and discomfort for a few days following the procedure, not unlike the feeling of an oncoming cold. During the next month or two you should experience a gradual decrease in your snoring. Depending on your level of snoring, the Somnoplasty procedure may need to be repeated. Since the delicate lining of the palate is protected, the Somnoplasty procedure is virtually painless and allows for a quick recovery.

What causes snoring?

Snoring occurs when floppy tissue in the airway relaxes during sleep and vibrates. Most snoring is caused by an enlarged soft palate and uvula at the back of the mouth, though the tongue, tonsils, adenoids and congested nasal passages can also contribute to the sound. The level of snoring can be aggravated by excess weight, alcohol intake and smoking.

Is snoring dangerous to my health?

Snoring may be a sign of obstructive sleep apnea, a serious disorder in which the snorer stops breathing several times an hour during sleep. Your physician will perform a full examination to determine whether you are a "simple snorer" or if you have a more significant breathing disorder.