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PutanEndtoSnoring Newsletter

Snoring Factoid:
27% of Americans say they
snore almost every night
(National Sleep Foundation’s 2002 Sleep in America poll)

February 2003  Issue 12


NewsNew palatal implant promises
one-stop cure for snoring

Snoring is caused by the vibration of tissues in your mouth, soft palate and throat.  As we get older and fatter, our throat muscles get flabby, so the tissues vibrate more noisily. If you can prevent the vibration, you'll stop snoring. 

You can do that, potentially, by stiffening that flabby tissue. That's the goal of three relatively low-cost outpatient procedures that address the problem of snoring.

The first is Radio Frequency Tissue Reduction.  Your physician will insert an instrument into your palate or uvula and deliver low levels of heat via radiofrequencies.  A portion of your tissue will literally be burned away and the resulting scar tissue stiffens the palate.

A second method is called injection snoreplasty.  In this case, your doctor injects a chemical into your throat tissues which has a similar effect to the heat; that is, your tissues are scarred and stiffened.

Both these methods are relatively quick but by no means painless.  Repeat visits are often needed to get a satisfactory reduction in snoring.  And, over time, it's possible that your body will "remodel" the scars and your snoring will resume.

Which brings us to the newest approach to tissue stiffening: small, polyester implants that are inserted through a special device into three places in your palate. According to the developers, Restore Medical Inc. of St. Paul, MN, this implant procedure can be completed in 10 minutes and is virtually painless.  No return visit is needed. The implants are designed to be permanent but are removable if necessary.

Late last month, Restore received FDA approval to start marketing what it calls the Pillar Palatal Implant System and is planning a general commercial release of the system in the second quarter of 2003, initially focusing on otolaryngologists (ear, nose and throat physicians).

It remains to be seen which of these three approaches (RFTR, snoreplasty, Pillar) will prove most popular (and effective) over time..  But habitual snorers can be hopeful that these solutions are likely to be less painful, less costly and at least as effective as surgical treatments for snoring.

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Note that PutanEndtoSnoring is not written by a medical professional. We welcome comments and supplementary research from any physician or sleep specialist reading this.

Is this information useful to you?
Send us questions or feedback.  And remember,
information provided by PutanEndtoSnoring does not substitute for the advice of your physician. 

PutanEndtoSnoring highlights

Latest news: Anything we can find that would interest snoring sufferers

Snoring basics: why is it important to deal with your snoring?

Snoring remedies: numerous ways to address your snoring problem

Snoring types: are you socially incorrect?

Glossary: quick definitions of snoring-related words you'll run into.

Message board:.Discuss remedies on the PutanEndtoSnoring Forum

Favorite Links
TalkAboutSleep, for news, forums and chat on all types of sleep disorder

American Sleep Apnea Association. Contains a wealth of sympathetic information for apnea sufferers.

Nanci Griffith -- one of our favorite singer-songwriters has a newly-redesigned site.

 Paid Links

Learn about Empathology - the process of studying Self with care -- in a FREE Empathology Introductory eBook.  http://empathology.com

Try this snoring remedy from GetVitamins.com:: Anti-Snoring Nose Drops (Vitamins & Nutritional Supplements)

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This Newsletter's Featured Product: SnorePlugs

Most readers of this newsletter may have no use for this product -- but your long-suffering bed partner will!  Direct from Taiwan, SnorePlugsTM are next-generation hydrophilic foam earplugs, with very high noise reduction (SNR 37db), softer and more comfortable than non-hydrophilic plugs.  They absorb moisture in the ear canal, keeping them comfortable for longer periods. They're also long-lasting, keeping their shape no matter how much you scrunch them up each night when you put them in.  Add these to your partner's Christmas stocking and you'll sleep through the night with your partner by your side!  Buy SnorePlugs at The Snoring Shop

Feature  Hey, FDA, it's not a dental appliance, it's
 an athletic mouthguard!

Effective December 12, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration formalized its regulations for anyone marketing a dental appliance as an anti snoring/sleep apnea device.  As you'd expect, the FDA requires products to carry such warnings as: may cause intra-oral soreness, obstruction of oral breathing, loosening or flaring of lower teeth, and general tooth movement. 

It's hard to object to the FDA looking out for our welfare. The catch, however, is that the FDA has declared that dental appliances must be made available by prescription only -- which is why the Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine rushed to inform us of the FDA ruling.  While dentists may be needed to fit some of the higher end, custom-molded devices, most people are perfectly capable of fitting the type of soft plastic, low-cost mouthpiece that many of us have found very effective in reducing our snoring. 

If you think a mouthpiece may help reduce your snoring, you can go see your dentist and spend several hundred dollars on a prescription-only product -- or, you can order a product from outside the U.S. (we recommend one of our loyal advertisers, Therapy Control Products in Canada).  Or -- and here it gets amusing -- you can buy an athletic mouthguard at your local sports store.  These are pretty much the same things as mouthpieces designed for snorers -- they help reposition your jaw so that your airways are unobstructed during sleep. But they are not FDA regulated.  One of our readers recommends the Brain Pad, available from sports chains nationwide.

Are these cheap plastic devices as good as the expensive dentist-fit appliances?  Probably not, and if you suffer from obstructive sleep apnea, you should certainly have a discussion with your dentist.  But for primary snoring, you have little to lose (and lots to save) by at least trying the less expensive solution.  

   Advertisement Check it off your list (486x60)

ForumFrom the PutanEndtoSnoring Forum:
This section features some interesting posting to our forum.  This issues relates reader Mark's positive experience with a common over-the-counter remedy for congestion.

Has anyone found Vicks Vaporub to be effective in stopping snoring? I have had bronchial congestion and have been rubbing my chest and throat with Vicks before going to sleep. The vapors seem to clear my nose and throat and my wife says I have not snored since using Vicks. I am now putting a small amount on my upper lip just below my nose and it seems to work. Anyone else had any experience with Vicks?

Editors comment: a few other readers chimed in to agree that Vicks has worked for them.  The conclusion readers should draw is that for many people, anything that helps you breathe easier at night will alleviate snoring.  If you don't like the smell of Vicks, try aromatherapy. You can also get Breathe Right nasal strips embedded with Vicks (click on the drugstore.com ad above to find these online).

Add your comments or Read About Aromatherapy for Snoring

Snoreeze Now Available in U.S.

Throat sprays typically work the same way; they coat your throat with natural oils, so that your throat tissues vibrate less loudly. What sets the sprays apart is quality of ingredients -- and price. The Snoring Shop is delighted to offer Europe's market-leading anti-snoring throat spray, Snoreeze, and proud that we can offer it at a very competitive price.  Snoreeze has all-natural ingredients including peppermint oil for a breathe-freshening taste.  Order here.


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