Saturday, August 23, 2008

Treatments for Snoring

Treatment of snoring does not include which of the following

a. weight reduction
b. avoidance of alcohol at night
c. injection of botulin toxin into soft palate ( the back of the roof of the mouth)
d. placement of implants into the soft palate palate
e. peppermint oil inhalation

Snoring is a common condition. In the Wisconsin Sleep Cohort Study, habitual snoring was present in 44 percent of males and 28 percent of females between 30 and 60 years of age. Snoring may be associated with obstructive sleep apnea or it may be primary and not associated with any underlying conditions. It is caused by partial airway collapse with vibration of the upper airway. Most vibration of the soft tissues occurs at the level of the soft palate.

There are several treatments for primary snoring which are mainly for the benefit of the snorer's partner. Some of these treatments include the following.

1. Weight Loss - Obesity is thought to contribute to snoring by reducing the airway dimension.

2. Alcohol and Tobacco Avoidance - Alcohol worsens the condition by decreasing the tone in the pharyngeal muscles. The same is true of sleeping pills. Alcohol should be avoided for several hours before sleep. it is not clear how smoking contributes to sleep-disordered breathing - nightly nicotine withdrawal or increased nasal congestion may contribute.

3. Positional Therapy - Some individuals snore more when they are lying flat on their back.
Turning to a lateral position has been shown to decrease snoring in these snorers. A foam wedge can be used to maintain the position.

4. Medication - Nasal steroids can be used to decrease congestion. Protriptyline has been used but it may have side effects such as impotence.

5. Reducing Nasal Resistance - Mechanical devices may be used to dilate the anterior nasal valve. One that works well is a stiff adhesive strip that is applied externally across the nasal alae where it serves to retract and stabilize them.

6. Surgical Procedures - The newest technique which has been recently approved by the FDA is the placement of polyethylene terephthalate (PET) implants into the center of the soft palate to stiffen the area and to reduce fluttering. This procedure is less invasive and less painful than the traditional surgeries which include uvulopalatopharyngoplasty (shortening of the uvula and removing part of the soft palate) by scalpel or laser and radiofrequency treatment (which induces scar formation of the palate).

The correct answer is e.


Katie said...

I found my better half only snores when asleep on his back - but on his side - slience is golden

Anonymous said...

I have to say most of them apply to me: I used to snore a lot, but losing just a few kilos improved the situation a lot. Also, sleeping on the side slightly improves the situation, but not so much as weight reduction in my case.

Anonymous said...

You didn't mention the CPAP machine which I use.
BTW my wife only snores when she faces me :(

Dr. Taraneh Razavi said...

Yes, CPAP is another mode of treatment but many patients find it difficult to tolerate. There is more of a necessity for its use when the snoring is associated with sleep apnea. So how about switching sides of bed so that you can face your wife :)

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Jon said...

I also have to sleep on my side to avoid snoring. I cannot sleep on my back now even if I try.