18 September 2015

Today's #Sleeptember FACT --- Snoring as a result of allergies

If you've been sneezing a lot lately and you're certain you don't have a head cold, you probably have allergies or sensitivities to particulate matter in the air. Pollens and grasses are problematic all the way to the end of the fall, but people who live in areas where wildfires are a problem will also suffer from rhinitis caused by the added smog caused by them.

At SHC we often talk about snoring in the context of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) or upper airway resistance syndrome (UARS), but allergies can also commonly lead to snoring. After all, the mucous membranes are swollen or inflamed as they do their work battling histamine responses and filtering external pollutants and allergens. When you have a swollen upper airway, and your nasal passages are congested, you naturally have an increased chance of snoring while you sleep.

"20 Minute Fix for Nasal Allergies."
Turbinate coblation procedure on video (snip).
Aside from treating the allergies so that you don't have strong reactions to particulates that lead to airway restrictions, you can also treat  chronic snoring related to allergies by a procedure known as turbinate coblation. This outpatient treatment shrinks the swollen turbinate tissues within the nasal passages to achieve better air circulation in the upper airway, which can lead to fewer problems with snoring. Patients receive the procedure and then immediately return to a normal day of work or family; there is no downtime associated with turbinate coblation.

See the video about how this procedure is performed here. 

Note: the procedure, which lasts between 10 and 20 minutes and can be done during one's lunch hour, can cost up to $1500 and may or may not be covered by insurance. However, patients who've received this treatment say it does work immediately and the results are positive and noticeable.

If you are interested in learning more about turbinate coblation, please consult your general practitioner to determine if you are a good candidate for this procedure.