Snoring and Sleep Apnea in Tampa and Spring Hill, FL
Guess what the third leading cause of divorce is in the United States? Snoring, and it’s not just men who are keeping their spouses awake at night. At Suncoast ENT Surgical Specialists, our board-certified Otolaryngology/Head and Neck Surgeons know all too well how snoring can affect relationships as well as the quality of life. We have helped many men and women in the Tampa, Spring Hill and surrounding areas who are just like you — desperately wanting a solution to the late night disruptions caused by snoring and sleep apnea.
What is the Connection Between Snoring and Sleep Apnea?
Of the 90% of Americans who snore, only about half are affected by sleep apnea. Unfortunately, this may mean that you simply have a noisy sleeper next to you each night. But for those who are living with sleep apnea, there’s hope. Obstructive sleep apnea is a chronic condition in which a person’s breathing is temporarily disrupted. Breathing patterns may include periods of no breathing or shallow breathing. The breathing interruptions can last only a few seconds or longer than one minute.
People with sleep apnea snore for the same reason as those who do not have the condition. The muscles of the throat relax and block part of the airway. Breathing causes the soft tissues to vibrate.
Diagnosing the Cause of Snoring and Sleep Apnea
An ENT specialist is able to delineate symptoms of snoring and sleep apnea. People with sleep apnea tend to snore louder and more frequently. Because symptoms only occur during rest, our ENT specialist may recommend a sleep study to monitor your breathing during sleep.
Treatments for Snoring and Sleep Apnea
Suncoast ENT Surgical Specialists offer treatments for the most common causes of snoring and sleep apnea.
Deviated Septum/Septoplasty: The septum is the bone and cartilage inside your nose that separates the two chambers. A deviated septum may be crooked or off-center and cause breathing problems, snoring and sleep apnea. Your ENT specialist may recommend septoplasty, a procedure that corrects anatomical flaws in the septum.
Tongue Base Reduction Procedure: Suncoast ENT Surgical Specialists offers one of the newest treatments for sleep apnea — tongue base reduction procedure. The procedure changes the size of certain anatomical structures that lead to sleep apnea.
Palatoplasty: Palatoplasty is recommended for patients who suffer from sleep apnea due to issues with the soft palate and uvula of the mouth.
Uvuloplasty: The uvulo is the soft tissue mass that hangs down in the back of the throat. Surgical modifications to the uvulo have proven effective for treating sleep apnea in certain patients.
Turbinate Reduction: The turbinates are structures inside the nose that often impede properly breathing during sleep. Through surgery, the ENT surgeon reduces the size of the turbinate to improve breathing.
Uvulopalatopharyngoplasty (UPPP): Sleep apnea and snoring may be caused by several anatomical abnormalities, so your ENT surgeon may recommend surgery to correct the palate, uvulo, and other soft tissue.
Airway Restriction: Not all patients transition from simple snoring straight to sleep apnea. Airway restrictions typically develop over time. Your ENT physician may recommend treatments to prevent your airway restriction from advancing to sleep apnea.
How to Reduce Snoring Not Caused by Sleep Apnea
Even if you do not live with sleep apnea, Suncoast ENT Surgical Center still wants to improve your sleep:
- Avoid eating before going to bed
- Reduce alcohol consumption
- Improve your diet and exercise to maintain a healthy weight
- Follow a routine of going to sleep and waking up
- Lift the head of your bed four to six inches
- Side sleepers tend to snore less than those who sleep on their backs
Snoring and sleep apnea disrupt your sleep, leaving you feeling chronically tired. The conditions can also cause problems between you and your significant other. If you or a loved one have trouble sleeping due to snoring or sleep apnea, contact our Tampa or Spring Hill office to schedule a consultation with our ENT physicians.