If you have a hard time breathing through your nose or breathe with your mouth open, you may have a deviated nasal septum. At Beach Cities ENTS, in Torrance, California, the board-certified team of ear, nose, and throat specialists provides expert diagnosis and treatments for a deviated septum. Get the treatment you need to breathe easily; call Beach Cities ENTS in the South Bay or schedule a consultation online today.
Your septum is cartilage and bone that separates the left and right nasal cavities.
If your septum deviation is too far to one side, it can cause nasal obstruction, which leads to disruptive symptoms, including:
You may also notice the changes in your nasal cycle. When you breathe, you alternate between nostrils. This change shouldn’t be perceptible, but if you have a deviated septum, the structural obstruction to your nasal cavities could create a noticeable difference when your respiratory system switches nostrils.
Some patients are born with deviated septums. You could also develop a deviated septum later in life. For example, the aging process can affect your nasal structures, or you could have an injury that moves your septum off-center.
Colds and sinus infections cause inflammation in your sinus and nasal cavities. This decreases the already narrow space for airflow created by a deviated septum and makes your congestion and troubled breathing even more disruptive.
The team at Beach Cities ENTS offers a variety of solutions for a deviated septum. Before recommending any treatment, the physician will perform an exam to confirm that your symptoms are due to a deviated septum and assess its severity.
Depending on your condition, treatments will be suggested to relieve your symptoms and, if necessary, straighten your septum.
For example, if your septum deviation is mild, you may benefit from a steroid nasal spray to reduce inflammation and congestion in your nose. However, if you have a severely deviated septum, your doctor may suggest septoplasty — a surgical procedure to correct your septum. During the procedure, your surgeon trims and repositions your cartilage or bone to allow for better airflow.
A septoplasty takes about an hour and is a minimally invasive outpatient procedure so you can go home the same day.
You may have some mild and temporary discomfort following septoplasty. It’s also common to experience congestion, sensitivity to the upper teeth, and bloody nasal drainage.
You should avoid blowing your nose after your procedure and elevate your head at night to minimize swelling. You should be back to your regular activities within a few days.
If you’re concerned about a deviated septum, call Beach Cities ENTS or make an appointment online today.