Snoring is a noise (obviously!) produced by a person while they sleep. What you may not realize is that the noise production is actually an orchestra of sounds from different regions of a person’s airway from the tip of the nose to the windpipe and not just the soft palate alone… So for one person, snoring may be due to: 10% deviated septum 20% back of nose vibrating 10% sides of throat vibrating 20% uvula and palate vibrating 40% tongue vibrating 100% TOTAL Whereas another person’s snore may be the result of: 80% deviated septum 5% cheeks vibrating 5% lips vibrating 10% uvula and palate vibrating 100% TOTAL For this last individual where 80% of the snore is due to the deviated septum, over the counter solutions such as breathe-rite strips may help, but definitely would do little to improve the first person’s snoring which is mostly due to tongue vibration. Because of this variability in anatomic sources of snoring, treatment is not easy or straightfoward. Many of the surgical procedures performed attempt to alleviate snoring by either removing the problem (ie, UPPP removes the uvula & trims the soft palate; septoplasty corrects the deviated septum) or scarring the tissues so they won’t vibrate as easily (somnoplasty or pillar procedure). That said, for most people, most of the snoring originates from the soft palate/uvula and base of tongue. Regarding the pillar procedure, it promotes scarring which stiffens and therefore minimizes unwanted vibration leading to snoring. The ideal candidate is a patient with a large and thick soft palate. This procedure is performed under local in an office setting. No sedation is required and there is minimal downtime. However, even with these maneuvers, snoring may not completely go away as snoring is due to many different levels of the airway and if one person’s snore is not predominantly from the soft palate, the pillar procedure will do NOTHING for the snore. 

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