Deviated Septum Affects your Life

How a Deviated Septum Affects your Life

It is estimated that a deviated septum affects about one-third of people throughout the world. In many cases, people with this condition do not even realize that they have it. However, for others, it can affect their ability to breathe normally.

It is estimated that a deviated septum affects about one-third of people throughout the world. In many cases, people with this condition do not even realize that they have it. However, for others, it can affect their ability to breathe normally. Learning more about how a deviated septum affects people can aid you in determining if you suffer from this condition.

What is a Deviated Septum?

Your nose is separated into two chambers and the septum is what separates them. It is a wall of cartilage. Normally, it is midline in your nose, but when it deviates, it shifts away to the right or the left. There are two primary causes of this condition:

  • In some cases, a deviated septum occurs when you have a nose injury. Some types of injuries can move the septum out of its normal position. Injuries that can cause this can occur as a result of automobile accidents, rough play or sports injuries.
  • Some people are born with this condition. It will be apparent at birth and occur during fetal development.

If you have a deviated septum, it is possible that it could get worse as you get older. This is because the nasal structures are affected as a result of aging.

If you have allergies or issues like chronic sinusitis these could worsen your deviated septum symptoms. This is because these conditions can cause the sinus and nasal cavities to become irritated and swelling. As a result, you can experience nasal obstruction due to the nasal passages narrowing.

Symptoms of a Deviated Septum

Many people who have a deviated septum do not have noticeable symptoms, so they are unaware that they have the condition. When symptoms do occur, they can range from mild to severe. If you do have symptoms, they may include the following:

  • Obstruction: It is possible to have a blockage in both nostrils or just one. This issue can make it hard for you to breathe. The difficulty breathing can be more pronounced when you have allergies or an upper respiratory infection since these issues can further narrow your nasal passages due to swelling.
  • Facial pain: If your deviated septum is severe, it is possible for it to cause pain in your face. When it causes pain, you usually only notice it on one side of your face. It may occur when pressure results from the surfaces inside your nose start to touch.
  • Sleeping on one side: People with a deviated septum may find themselves favoring one side when they sleep because it allows them to breathe easier. This generally indicates that one of your nasal passages is narrower than the other which obstructs airflow in that nostril.
  • Nasal cycle awareness: It is possible for one nostril to be obstructed and then feel clearer while the other side is obstructed. This is referred to as the nasal cycle.
  • Nosebleeds: Nosebleeds can occur when your septum becomes dry.
  • Noisy breathing: This condition can cause you to have noisy breathing when you are sleeping due to intranasal tissue swelling.

If you notice any symptoms of a deviated septum, you should consult with your doctor. It is especially important to consult with a doctor if you have the following symptoms:

  • Your nosebleeds are occurring frequently
  • Despite treatment, your nostril blockage does not get better
  • You have sinus infections that keep coming back

Deviated Septum Complications

When a nasal blockage occurs as a result of your deviated septum, it can cause a few complications. This is generally seen in people who have a severely deviated septum. These complications include:

•           Nasal passage congestion or pressure

•           Not being able to breathe easily can make it harder to sleep at night

•           If you cannot breathe well through your nose, you will breathe through your mouth which can lead to dry mouth

Diagnosing a Deviated Septum

Your doctor can usually diagnose a deviated septum and its severity with a physical examination of your nose and learning about your symptoms. The examination generally consists of your doctor shining a light into your nostrils to get a better look. They might also use a lighted scope to examine the area further back in the nose. In some cases, they will apply a decongestant spray and compare how your nasal passages look with the spray versus without it.

Treating a Deviated Septum

Initially, your doctor may focus on symptom management to see if this helps to alleviate them enough to keep you comfortable. This generally consists of medications which may include:

Antihistamines can help to reduce a runny or stuffy nose

Decongestants may help to keep your airways open by reducing nasal tissue swelling

Nasal steroid sprays may help with drainage and to reduce nasal tissue swelling

If medications are not enough to reduce your symptoms, your doctor might recommend a septoplasty. The surgeon will reposition and straighten your septum so that it is in the middle of your nose.

Rhinoplasty is another option for treating this condition and may be performed alone or with a septoplasty. So, how is a deviated septum fixed during rhinoplasty? This procedure works to change the cartilage and bone of your nose to alter its size, shape or both. When you have a deviated septum, this procedure can help to adjust the structure of your nose to ensure better alignment. After the components of your nose are properly aligned, you can breathe easier.

If you think that you might have a deviated septum, consult with your doctor. Diagnosis is relatively simple and straightforward, so it does not take much time to determine if you have this condition. From there, you and your doctor can discuss the proper treatment options so that you can breathe easier.

Write a Comment