Obstructive Sleep Apnea and Snoring Treatment

Snoring is very common – approximately one quarter of women snore and one third of men snore. Snoring is due to turbulent airflow with vibration of the tissues of the throat. We understand that excessive snoring can cause some sleepless nights for you and your partner, impacting your day-to-day life. 

Obstructive Sleep Apnoea (OSA) occurs when someone who is snoring stops breathing. You may have seen someone who is snoring loudly, then stops breathing, makes a big snorting sound and then starts up breathing again. If this happens frequently, this person gets very poor-quality sleep and wakes up feeling unrefreshed.   

Obstructive Sleep Apnoea is caused by collapse of the throat. This condition can result in chronic tiredness, underperformance and may predispose a person to accidents. When left untreated, obstructive sleep apnoea is associated with high blood pressure, heart attacks and strokes. 

How is excessive Snoring and Obstructive Sleep Apnoea (OSA) diagnosed?

This involves a visit to an ENT surgeon and a sleep study. Dr Francis Hall is a highly trained ENT surgeon with extensive experience treating snoring and obstructive sleep apnoea. He will take a careful history, perform a thorough examination, and arrange a sleep study. A sleep study involves sensors that track sleep patterns, breathing, and oxygen levels.  The sleep study can be conducted at home. We will show you how to set it up and will give you the device to take home. 

Obstructive Sleep Apnea and Snoring treatment:

Once you have been diagnosed with the condition, there is a range of obstructive sleep apnea treatment options to consider. Every patient’s case is individual, and the treatment options may vary depending on the diagnosis. 

Dr Francis Hall may offer the following treatments: 

1.   Propose lifestyle changes – exercise, healthy diet, weight loss, decreasing alcohol consumption and stopping sleeping tablets.  

2.  Instruct you to wear devices – There are two main types of devices that help with OSA and snoring. The first is a Mandibular Advancement Splint which is a therapeutic mouth guard which pulls the bottom jaw forward a few millimeters relative to the top jaw. The other device is called a CPAP machine. This machine uses a mask for the user to wear to help keep the breathing passage open. 

3.  Obstructive Sleep Apnoea Surgery – Nose and throatDr. Hall will advise and guide the patient into what type of sleep apnoea surgery is best for their individual condition. For example, children with obstructive sleep apnoea usually respond best to tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy. If an adult has a blocked nose from a deviated nasal septum, septoplasty (straightening of the nasal septum) should be considered. For some adults tonsillectomy and expansion palatoplasty is the way to go. Palatoplasty is an operation where the throat is widened so that air flows more freely. Sometimes the collapse is at the (base of tongue), in this case removal of tissue from the back of the tongue is recommended.   

Dr. Hall and Obstructive Sleep Apnoea and Snoring treatment

Whatever treatment you decide on, it is important to follow up with a repeat sleep study and ensure that the obstructive sleep apnoea has been resolved. This is usually done after three months and again every year or two. 

If you are experiencing excessive snoring or OSA, Dr Francis Hall will gladly assist you. If you’d like a consultation or have been referred by your GP, please contact us on (09) 281 2963 or book an appointment online.