How Can Oral Surgery for Sleep Apnea Help You?

How can oral surgery for sleep apnea help you?

Do you suffer from sleep apnea, and haven’t found a treatment that works? Oral surgery for sleep apnea may be the answer. Close to 18 million Americans report suffering from the sleep disorder, where breathing repeatedly stops and starts during sleep.

There are several forms of sleep apnea, some mild. However, serious side effects can arise if sleep apnea is left untreated. Headaches, fatigue, and irritability occur with continuous oxygen deprivation.

Oral surgery for sleep apnea may be your best option. It may alleviate symptoms and return the benefits of a full night’s sleep to you. Keep reading to learn about 3 common types of oral surgery for sleep apnea.

3 Oral Surgery for Sleep Apnea Options

There are several types of oral surgery that we can use to treat sleep apnea if other treatments are unsuccessful. Let’s briefly go over what your oral surgeon may consider to be the best surgery and treatment plan.

1.    Uvulopalatopharyngoplasty (UUP)

Don’t be scared off by this mouthful of a word! This procedure is the most commonly performed surgery for sleep apnea. It involves trimming the soft palate and repositioning the throat tissue and muscles. Your oral surgeon may explain this as removing excessive amounts of tissue from the soft palate. UUP surgery is performed in two phases, and the first will usually involve a tonsillectomy as well (removal of the tonsils.) Due to the fact that it is a more invasive surgery, an overnight hospital stay is often required with a UUP.

2.     Septoplasty

If your oral surgeon determines that the cause of your sleep apnea is a deviated septum, a septoplasty will likely be your best option for sleep apnea treatment. A deviated septum is simply a displacement of the nasal septum that can often block one nasal passage. Septoplasty will straighten the deviated septum, and can allow breathing to be smoother and easier once more.  

3.     Genioglossus Advancement

Another great word in oral surgery options is the genioglossus advancement – which simply refers to advancing the tongue muscle (genioglossus) forward. One of the causes of excessive snoring during sleep apnea is the rolling of the tongue backwards during sleep. This surgery involves cutting into the jaw bone where the tongue muscles are attached and moving it forward with a titanium plate inserted. This surgery will also require an overnight stay in a hospital.

So, how can oral surgery for sleep apnea help you (and the millions of others who suffer from it)? The surgical procedures may slightly vary, but all performed may return you to restful sleep by fixing oral abnormalities. At East Brainerd Oral Surgery, a consultation with an oral surgeon will help us determine the best treatment for your sleep apnea. If you’re seeking oral surgery for sleep apnea, schedule an appointment with East Brainerd Oral Surgery by calling (423) 296-8210 today.

[Related: read the Mayo Clinic’s definition of Sleep Apnea for more information. Then, contact us for help.]