Snoring is common, but it can be problematic. Snoring makes sleeping hard for people in the same bed, room, or even house. It can also be a health problem. Of course, snoring is commonly linked to sleep apnea. But even if a person has simple snoring without sleep apnea, they might experience low quality sleep. In addition, the vibrations of snoring can cause micro-injuries to blood vessels. These then scar over, increasing atherosclerosis (hardened arteries) and stroke risk.
Many people look for snoring treatment options. However, few find the right combination of an affordable, effective, and noninvasive treatment for them. If you’re looking for a great snoring treatment, consider Nightlase. Nightlase is minimally invasive, gives proven results, and reduces your snoring over the long-term without needing to mess with a nightly oral appliance.
Here’s what you need to know to decide whether Nightlase is the right snoring solution for you.
Get a Sleep Test
If your snoring is loud enough to bother other people, it’s important to get tested for sleep apnea. Your risk of sleep apnea increases if you snore loudly. Sleep apnea is a serious health condition with dangerous, potentially lethal complications.
It’s also a condition that Nightlase doesn’t treat. So before you consider Nightlase, you need to eliminate the possibility that you have sleep apnea, which you can only do with a sleep test.
At the Center for TMJ & Sleep apnea, sleep dentists Dr. Larry Pribyl and Dr. Jim Kleoppel can connect you with a sleep test. The good news is that most people can take a home sleep test in the comfort of their own bed. This is not only more comfortable and convenient, it’s less expensive.
Are You a Candidate? It Depends on Your Anatomy
If your sleep test shows that you have simple snoring without sleep apnea, we will evaluate your snoring to see if you’re a good candidate for Nightlase.
Nightlase targets snoring caused by your soft palate. The soft palate is the back part of the roof of your mouth. When you breathe, a large and floppy soft palate can vibrate. These vibrations create sound–snoring.
However, this is not the only source of snoring. Snoring can be caused by vibrations in the nostrils or in the throat. Your sleep dentist will evaluate your soft palate to see if it is the likely cause of your audible snoring. If you have a large, floppy soft palate, we may recommend Nightlase.
How Nightlase Works
Nightlase works by shrinking and firming the soft palate. Using our erbium-doped yttrium aluminum garnet (er:YAG) laser–the Fotona Lightwalker–your sleep dentist will gently heat your soft palate. This laser-induced heating causes minor injuries to the soft palate. As the soft palate heals, the tissue shrinks and firms. This should reduce or eliminate your snoring.
Nightlase takes three treatments a month apart for full effectiveness. Each treatment only takes 20 minutes. The injury from the laser is so minor that it doesn’t hurt. People don’t need anesthesia for this treatment, so you can easily get treatment on your lunch break, then go back to work.
Effects from Nightlase are almost immediate. Starting the first night after your first treatment, you should experience a reduction in your snoring. This reduction will increase over the first month. Then you will have your follow-up treatments until you complete your full course of treatments.
Once you reach maximum improvement, the results should last for a year or more.
How Effective Is Nightlase?
Several studies have looked at how effectively Nightlase reduces snoring. None of the studies are very high-quality (mostly because they’re small), but they are consistent with each other and with our experience treating patients at the Center for TMJ & Sleep Apnea in Lee’s Summit, MO.
In one study from 2015, 10 patients had Nightlase. After three treatments, these patients saw an 85% reduction in their snoring. Long-term follow-up for up to 36 months (three years) showed that these results were stable.
In a second study from 2016, 33 patients had Nightlase. About 65% of patients were satisfied with the results, with higher satisfaction rates among people who were 50 years old or above.
In a 2019 study, researchers looked at the results from 40 consecutive Nightlase patients. In this study, 85% of patients were very-satisfied with their results. Patients saw significant improvement in snoring, dry mouth in the morning, and choking during sleep. This study had a follow-up of up to 24 months, and results were stable in 72% of patients.
Compiling the results from these and other studies, a 2020 systematic review found that the treatment had an overall satisfaction rate of 80% with significant reduction in snoring.
Get Started with Nightlase Today in Independence, MO
If you are looking for an effective way to reduce your snoring without a nightly appliance or other daily treatment, consider Nightlase. This easy, minimally invasive treatment takes only about an hour of total treatment time over two months. It effectively reduces snoring, and the results last at least a year, and possibly two or three years.
To find out if Nightlase is right for you, please call (816) 795-1000 or use our contact form today to schedule a consultation with a sleep dentist at the Center for TMJ & Sleep Apnea in Lee’s Summit, MO.