The Pillar Procedure and Sleep Apnea

About 75 million Americans — one in four! — snore at night, and of those an estimated 59 million suffer from mild to severe obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). OSA is characterized by repeated bouts of breathing cessation throughout the night, and the result can be serious health problems, including high blood pressure and possible stroke. So OSA is not something to be taken lightly.

If you suspect you have sleep apnea, you need to see a sleep specialist immediately, and a sleep test will no doubt be ordered to diagnose your condition. The most common treatment involves the prescription of a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) device, which is a mask worn over the mouth and nose that supplies a stable air supply throughout the sleep experience.

The problem with CPAP masks, however, is that about 50 percent of those prescribed the device cannot tolerate its use. Other options for OSA treatment do exist, depending on the exact cause of one’s OSA.

The PillarProcedure, offered by The Snoring Center, is one such option. What exactly is this procedure, and what does it entail?

The Pillar Procedure is often prescribed when the air intake problem is associated with flabbiness in the soft palate at the rear of the mouth. The flab, often associated with being overweight but not necessarily so, causes the soft palate to vibrate when air is taken in. The result is snoring and often obstruction of the air intake itself.

The Pillar Procedure is done in-office in about 15 to 20 minutes. The doctor will place three tiny woven implants into the soft palate to strengthen it over time. Since the Pillar Procedure doesn’t involve the surgical removal of any tissue, there is minimal discomfort, and patients generally resume a normal life-style the next day. Results will be felt over the next few weeks.

The first step in treatment of your OSA, if you suspect you have it or if you simply want to know why you feel fatigued everyday, is to seek an evaluation with a sleep professional Call today and get started.

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