Did you know that deviated septums affect about 80 percent of the human population? It’s actually a more common condition than you might think.
The most common cause is blunt-force trauma to the nose – this could be during contact sports or auto accidents. However, it can also occur at birth or after surgery.
No matter how your deviated septum came to be, there are a number of treatment options available to help you breathe more easily and live more fully.
Keep reading as we take a look at some of these treatments.
While some cases of deviated nasal septum don’t even require treatment, sufferers may take medication to alleviate symptoms;
- Allergy medications and decongestants
- Saline nose sprays
- Nasal steroid sprays
While these medications aren’t curative, they may allow someone with a deviated nasal septum to live with minimal symptoms.
Septoplasty is a surgery to correct a deviated septum. It typically involves resecting the deviated portion of cartilage and bone from the septum to improve airflow through the nose.
Your surgeon will usually perform the surgery under general anesthesia. In some patients, local anesthesia with a sedative is an option.
Your doctor may encourage you to consider local anesthesia if you are currently pregnant, or if you have had previous sinus surgery that included the use of general anesthesia.
Local anesthesia does not require the patient to be put to sleep, so it is typically safe for children as well as adults.
Endoscopic surgery involves using tiny instruments to create a small incision in the nostrils and then surgically straightening the septum. Recovery time is shorter than with traditional surgery and the procedure is less invasive.
However, although endoscopic surgery results in fewer complications, it may not be as effective at correcting severe cases of nasal obstruction as traditional methods.
Radiofrequency surgery uses an electric current to heat gentle tissue that has been inserted into the nose (similar to how a cauterizing pen works). This causes scarring in that area, which can effectively shrink or straighten a deviated septum over time.
Because this method does not require general anesthesia or hospitalization, patients are able to go home right after their procedure ends.
Other Surgical Procedures
Other surgical procedures that may be performed with septoplasty are turbinate reduction to open air passages in the nose and rhinoplasty to improve the aesthetic features of the nose. If you are considering either of these procedures, let your surgeon know during your initial consultation.
Make use of a resource like Sinus Health to help make an informed decision on which treatment is right for you.
Which Treatment for Deviated Septums Is Best for You?
We hope that you now have a better understanding of deviated septums and the treatment options available to you. It can be frustrating to live with the symptoms of a deviated septum, but there are ways to manage it and even correct it permanently.
We hope you found this article helpful. If so, why not check out more like it on our blog?