Sleep apnea is normally managed by making adjustments in one's lifestyle. The lifestyle changes include a focus on reducing alcohol intake and weight loss. Sleep apnea treatment is aimed at alleviating symptoms. In situations whereby the measures fail to treat sleep apnea, surgical intervention may be considered. Jaw surgeries can be done by highly skilled and experienced maxillofacial surgeons to help open the airway as well as prevent blockages in the airway.
Commonly used Sleep Apnea Surgeries
Various apnea surgeries have proven helpful in the management of sleep apnea disorder. First, there is uvulopalatopharyngoplasty, or UPPP, which entails the alteration of the soft tissues located behind the throat. The soft tissue in this case gets tightened or the excess tissue removed to aid in opening the airway and improving the patient's breathing function, especially during the night. Other soft palate surgeries that are laser-assisted can also be used to create an air-way opening effect similar to the UPPP procedure.
The second surgical intervention for sleep apnea is genioglossus muscle advancement. This procedure entails bringing the point of attachment of the tongue muscles to the lower jaw slightly forward. This alteration helps open the airway by creating more room for the tongue.
Lastly, sleep apnea can be managed surgically through a procedure called maxillomandibular advancement or MMA. This procedure is considered the most effective in resolving serious cases of sleep apnea. It entails movement of the upper or lower jaw forward to help open up the airway. It is an extensive procedure and the patient takes a longer time to recover.
The outcome among patients includes increased alertness, breathing easily, and significantly reduced mental fog. A success rate of approximately 95 percent has been reported for MMA surgeries done to correct obstructive sleep apnea.
If you have sleep apnea disorder, please reach out to our professionals to schedule an appointment. Our maxillofacial surgeons are highly experienced in reviewing and providing appropriate care bound to help resolve your sleep apnea as well as dental concerns.
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