Radiofrequency Ablation of Tongue
One of the causes of loud snoring or sleep apnea is a blockage of the airway by the tongue. If your tongue is larger at the base or has a high arch, it can fall backward against the back of the throat when you sleep, creating a blockage of your airway. One of the alternatives to CPAP masks for sleep apnea or oral appliances for snoring is radiofrequency ablation of the tongue procedures. At Julie Zweig, MD Integrative Sleep & ENT, we offer a radiofrequency-of-tongue treatment at our center in Alpharetta, GA.
The tongue is a major contributor to sleep disorders involving breathing. Many of the sleep apnea and snoring treatments available involve moving or controlling the tongue to manage these sleep disorders. For some patients, wearing a CPAP mask or oral appliance is not feasible to control their condition. Another option is changing the size of the tongue to limit vibration that causes snoring and the likelihood of blocking the airway when sleeping.
Minimally Invasive Sleep Apnea Treatment
With radiofrequency ablation of the tongue, we use a hand-held device that delivers radiofrequency energy to the base of the tongue. We numb the tongue with a local anesthesia before the procedure to ensure there is not any discomfort for the patient. The energy used can shrink the tissue in the base of the tongue to reduce the chance of noise or blockage while sleeping.
There is no downtime needed after a radiofrequency ablation of the tongue. It can take several weeks for the changes to occur, but as the tissue begins to shrink, there is usually a noticeable difference in snoring and sleep apnea symptoms. This can be a minimally invasive option to control snoring noise and reduce breathing issues when sleeping without needing to wear a sleep device. The procedure does not impact the normal function of the tongue.
If you want to sleep better and breathe easier, radiofrequency ablation of the tongue may be right for you. If you are looking for an alternative to CPAP masks or oral appliances for snoring or sleep apnea, come see us at Julie Zweig, MD Integrative Sleep & ENT. Contact our center in Alpharetta, GA, to schedule your consultation with our experienced sleep medicine specialists.