Snoring is a major problem worldwide and with increasing fast life and erratic lifestyle factors snoring has become all the more increasing. Several researchers and scientists have invented nose strips and nose inhalers to eliminate snoring problems but it hasn’t been completely successful. One such latest non-invasive treatment for snoring, that has been debated and discussed by doctors across the globe since long is the laser therapy.
The science behind the treatment is that it utilizes a specialized non ablative laser (fractional erbium yag laser or Er:YAG) to heat up the targeted tissue thereby producing collagen and tissue tightening. The airway passage is thus widened and snoring is reduced. It does not cut through any tissue and there is no subsequent suturing or dressing involved,” explains dermatologist Dr Abhijit Desai.
Treatment with the laser helps to strengthen the structures at the back of the throat eg; uvula, anterior tonsillar pillars and soft palate, says laser specialist Dr Gauri Desai. She adds, “This reduces the vibration of the structures while breathing during sleep. The result is reduction of snoring.”
Can laser stop snoring completely? This treatment minimizes snoring to a great extent, claim laser specialists. “It may also stop it completely in some people, depending upon the extent of snoring to begin with, and its causes,” says Dr Gauri. However, Dr Kaushal
Sheth, consultant ENT and robotic surgeon says, “Laser treatment is a type of surgical procedure for snoring, but may not be very effective always. It is painful due to the thermal heat damage to surrounding tissues. It may require frequent applications and the pain remains for a long period of time.”
Time taken for treatment: This treatment consists of three sessions explains Dr Abhijit, adding, “There is a gap of two weeks between the first two sessions and a gap of one month between the second and third sessions. Each session lasts for about 20 minutes.”
The results may be seen from the first day itself and are enhanced over the period of the entire treatment say Dr Gauri. However, this will depend again on the causes and extent of snoring at the beginning.
Now is the treatment safe and secure?.To this query, Dr Kaushal says, “This procedure is relatively safer than conventional methods because it can be performed under local anesthesia and the bleeding is negligible.”
Experts say that around 86% of the population is averse to the idea of curing snoring via surgery. Dr Abhijit says, “Any surgery involves anesthesia and some amount of pain. There is also associated recovery period and downtime. Results are usually seen after the healing of the surgical incisions. Laser does not involve any anesthesia as there is no pain. It is a short procedure and people can go back to their routine immediately.”
“Surgeries for snoring treatment are actually much better and secure technologically and also produces fruitful results with no loss of time, money, energy and efforts as compared to laser surgeries,”Dr Kaushal adds.