5 Signs of a Deviated Septum

Do You Need Septoplasty to Fix Your Crooked Septum?

5 Signs of a Deviated Septum

The septum is the thin wall of cartilage and bone that runs vertically between the two nostrils to separate them. This piece of bone rarely runs straight up and down, as 80% of Americans have a septum that is crooked in some way. Most Americans are not affected by this deviation and may not even notice.

However, if you have a deviated septum in Los Angeles that obstructs your breathing your causes you some other kind of discomfort, you definitely notice it. A deviated septum can be something you’re born with, or it can occur as the result of a facial injury. A deviated septum is often a sign of a broken nose.

What can start off as a minor inconvenience can become a legitimate health concern. Realizing that you have a deviated septum may not be as easy as you think. Many people do not notice their deviated septum. Our ENT specialists in Los Angeles have compiled some of the most common symptoms of deviated septums. If your condition fits one or more of the symptoms below, then it may be time to see an ENT doctor in Los Angeles about your crooked nasal septum.

Difficulty Breathing

The biggest sign of a deviated septum is when someone has difficulty breathing through their nose. When the septum is off-center, it can obstruct either one or both nostrils, thus obstructing airflow and making it difficult to breathe.

If you have a deviated septum, you may find breathing in Los Angeles always difficult, or it may show itself when you’re working out or experiencing a cold. Difficulty breathing can interfere with your life.

One of the ways breathing issues can affect your life is when you’re trying to sleep. If your nasal airways are obstructed, then you may snore or momentarily stop breathing, referred to as sleep apnea. These conditions can cause daytime drowsiness, potentially putting you at risk of a car crash or workplace accident. Snoring can also affect your relationships if it’s so loud your partner has to sleep in a separate room.

Some people do not notice their deviated septum until they are suffering from a cold. When you have a cold or the flu, it’s normal for your nasal cavities to become congested. This can cause breathing difficulties in normal noses, so it will be even harder to inhale if your septum is off-center.

Nasal Congestion and/or Headaches

As stated above, a deviated septum blocks one or both airways, and this blockage gets worse if you are suffering from nasal congestion. Whether that nasal congestion is due to seasonal allergies, air pollution, or an illness, it can be extremely uncomfortable. Nasal congestion often leads to headaches due to the buildup of pressure in your sinuses, and this pain sometimes can’t be treated with ibuprofen or aspirin.

Research has shown a link between having a deviated septum and experiencing migraine conditions. There’s no known cure for migraines, but if your migraines are caused by your blocked nasal passage, then getting deviated septum repair in Los Angeles may be your ticket to migraine relief.

Frequent Nosebleeds

Nosebleeds can happen when your nasal passageways are dry or when the nose is hit too hard. They are the result of irritation of the nasal blood vessels, especially the Kiesselbach’s plexus area near the bottom of the nose.

Someone with a deviated septum could suffer frequent nosebleeds. Chronic nosebleeds occur in patients with deviated septums because its bent or curved shape creates turbulent airflow. This level of airflow can make your nose dryer, and therefore, it may bleed frequently.

Nosebleeds that occur on a regular basis may be a sign that something is wrong in your nasal cavity. You should contact a septoplasty expert in Los Angeles at Westside Head & Neck if you are suffering chronic nosebleeds.

Sinus Infections

Sinus infections are a natural occurrence in most people, especially if you live in Los Angeles, one of the worst U.S. cities for allergy sufferers. A sinus infection occurs when bacteria starts to breed in the warm, humid nasal cavity that is created by the buildup of mucus.

If you feel like you almost always have a cold or sinus infection, this is a huge sign you could have a deviated septum. With an obscured nasal passageway, mucus can easily build up to block the passageway. The buildup of mucus can provide the perfect environment for bacteria to breed, causing a sinus infection. If you suffer severe allergies or sinus infections, then you could be living with a deviated septum.

Snoring and/or Disrupted Sleep

As stated above, many people with deviated septums have trouble sleeping or snore when they sleep. Snoring is caused when your airways become obstructed in some way, so someone with a deviated septum could frequently snore.

Trouble sleeping can have serious consequences. You may be drowsy during the day, and this can cause slow reaction times and poor judgment skills. These skills are essential for actions like operating a motor vehicle or pulling off a successful and productive work day. If you are snoring, then it can negatively affect your relationship if your partner must sleep in another room.

No matter how your snoring affects your life, you may be able to treat it with a septoplasty procedure. Treating your septum with surgery will open up your airways, allowing you to breathe easier. This will come into play while you’re asleep, as easier breathing can give you a better night’s sleep.

Seeing a Doctor

You can start breathing better if you undergo a septoplasty procedure. This is an outpatient procedure that our doctors have performed many times. We can meet with you during your initial consultation to tell you in detail how we are going to open your airways.

After your surgery, you will be provided with a list of post-operation instructions with a few limitations to ensure that the healing process is not interrupted. It’s normal to experience some crusting and bloody drainage for the first few weeks after surgery.

The ENTs of Westside Head & Neck will ensure that you get the best treatment possible so that you can get back to your normal activities. Contact our office to have your nose assessed and to receive a treatment plan.

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