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Nasal Obstruction

Nasal obstruction refers to some blockage of the nose or nasal cavity and can be caused by a wide variety of problems. There are several common causes of nasal obstruction:

  • Inferior Turbinate Hypertrophy
    On the inside of the nose there are normal bony structures called turbinates. They are covered by a large amount of spongy mucosa (the pink lining inside the nose). The turbinates are very susceptible to allergy and dust irritation. If they become swollen, it can be difficult to breathe through the nose.

  • Deviated Nasal Septum
    The septum is the structure separating the nostrils inside the nose. A deviated nasal septum is a crooked septum. Symptoms may include difficulty breathing through the nose (especially on one side), and a runny nose. A deviated nasal septum may be caused by trauma to the nose.

  • Foreign Bodies in the Nose

  • Large Adenoids – which block the back of the nose

  • Swelling of the Lining of the Nose from Allergies

  • Choanal Atresia
    This is a congenital (present at birth) condition that is a narrowing or blockage of the nasal airway by tissue.

  • Pyriform Aperture Stenosis


What Treatment Options are Available?

Tubinate reduction is usually indicated when enlargement obstructs other parts of the nose and airways causing symptoms like sleep apnea, congestion and difficulty breathing. The procedure to reduce the size of the turbinates is often accompanied by a septoplasty, (a surgery that is used to correct a deviated septum). Nasal turbinates (or nasal concha) are bony and soft-tissue structures inside the nose. Their purpose is to trap dirt, dust, and particles like pollen so these irritants do not enter your lungs. They also add moisture and heat the air you breathe in which helps your lungs operate more effectively.

Allergies and other conditions can cause irritation, inflammation, and enlargement of the turbinates resulting in a blocked nasal airway (stuffy nose). Blocked nasal airway is a contributor to snoring.



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