What Is the Pillar Procedure, and Is It Right for You?

At the very minimum, chronic snoring is troublesome for everyone who has a bed partner. At worst, it can pose huge health risks for the snorer, including high blood pressure, arrhythmia and heart disease and stroke, especially if it’s associated with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA).

Not all causes of chronic snoring are the same, but often it’s a result of a soft or flabby palate, which vibrates when air is breathed in, resulting in snoring sounds and disruptions of the sleeping pattern.

One of the best and most widely used — and successful — treatments for a soft palate is the Pillar Procedure, one of the treatments that The Snoring Center specializes in and excels at.

How does the Pillar Procedure work? Basically, through a 20-minute in-office procedure, sleep physicians use implants into the soft palate to cause both scarring and stiffening of the palate, which means that breathing will not cause the palate to vibrate and cause snoring and other difficulties.

According to the developers of the procedure: “A specially trained sleep doctor or oral maxillofacial surgeon places three tiny implants into your soft palate, using a special delivery tool. Over time, the implants work with the body’s natural response, which causes tissue around the implants to anchor, encapsulate, and connect them — adding structural support to stiffen the soft palate. This structural support and stiffening help reduce the tissue vibration that can cause snoring. They also help decrease the palatal tissue collapse that can obstruct the upper airway and cause or contribute to sleep apnea.”

There are thousands and thousands of success stories involving people with snoring and/or sleep apnea problems who not only got better but thrived sleep-wise after the Pillar Procedure.

After the Pillar Procedure, one patient stated: ““I think one of the things for me with the Pillar Procedure is that it provides me with the peace of mind at night to know that he [her spouse] is not going to be snoring in my ears. Because one of the things for those of us that have lived with a snorer for many years is that you develop an anxiety about getting to sleep, because you know that the snoring is going to be there. And you never know when it’s going to happen. And whether or not it does, it’s that build-up of anxiety. And I’m starting to feel that anxiety go away at night, because it’s not going to be there.””

At any rate, if you suffer from chronic snoring and/or suspect you’re suffering from sleep apnea, you need to examine all your options. The Pillar Procedure is certainly one of your premier treatment options, especially if a soft palate is to blame. Bottom line: seek evaluation today if you have sleep difficulties associated with snoring. And if your partner is keeping you awake at night with snoring, suggest that he or she seek help. Just 20 minutes can make a huge difference in people’s lives.

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