Sleep apnea can be a difficult condition to live with. This particular sleeping disorder occurs when the airways used for breathing are blocked or partially blocked while sleeping, causing the patient to sometimes stop breathing for periods of time, snore loudly, choke or gasp in the middle of the night and have a generally restless sleep. People who have sleep apnea often suffer from morning headaches and constant fatigue which can be challenging to deal with. There are a number of devices used to help treat sleep apnea, but they may not be appropriate for everyone. There are a number of different alternatives, however, including the option for surgical procedures aimed at resolving the issue.
Surgery for obstructive sleep apnea is often treated as a last resort and is not an option explored until other methods have failed. There are several different procedures that may be implemented, so it really depends on the patient when it comes to determining which approach will be best. One of the more common procedures undertaken in order to improve sleep apnea in adults is Uvulopalatopharyngoplasty or UPPP. A tonsillectomy or adenoidectomy are often used in order to treat children who have sleep apnea because the condition is often caused by enlarged tonsils or adenoids in kids. Tracheostomy is another option but is often only used when other treatment options have failed or when treatment is required as soon as possible. Maxillo-mandibular advancement or MMA can be implemented in order to increase the size of the airway. Alternatively, radiofrequency ablation or RFA can be used to reduce the size of the tongue and other tissues that may be blocking the passage to the lungs.
There are other surgical procedures which may help to facilitate better breathing while sleeping but may not pertain specifically to sleep apnea itself, such as surgeries for weight loss.
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