Nasal Obstruction Scottsdale


While nasal obstruction or congestion is often a temporary symptom of allergies or viral infections that will go away with home treatments and time, some chronic problems can create more long-term, expensive and painful issues for patients. People with chronic nasal symptoms often deal with issues such as prolonged difficulty breathing, sinus infections and overuse of antibiotic medications. This also leads to a lower quality of life and missed work or school days that negatively impact a patient’s future financial stability. This section seeks to address the long-term, chronic nasal problems experienced by patients and how a nose surgery can permanently correct these symptoms for better quality of life and long-term health and wellness.

What Causes Nasal Congestion?

revision rhinoplastyNasal congestion commonly affects many people across the United States. While nasal congestion can stem from conditions such as the common cold or influenza, it can also be a sign of a deeper problem. Four main reasons for nasal congestion have been identified by medical institutions; these include allergic rhinitis, non-allergic rhinitis, infections and structural abnormalities.

Allergic Rhinitis

“Rhinitis” comes from the word “rhino,” meaning nose, and “itis,” meaning inflammation. Allergies are defined as inflammatory reactions to certain substances. In the instance of allergic rhinitis, the cause for the allergic response differs for everyone but is often associated with things like pollen, pet dander, the presence of dust mites, mold, household dust, etc. While household dust allergies are often most apparent in the winter, mold allergies can cause allergy symptoms year round. People who suffer from allergic rhinitis often take over-the-counter medications such called antihistamines, and others also take steroid nasal spray to help reduce inflammation further. These medications can often be obtained without a prescription and are also available in combination with a decongestant.

Allergy shots are sometimes used to treat severe or chronic allergy symptoms. SLIT skin tests and blood tests are used to create a unique profile of the patient’s allergy-inducing substances. These substances are then injected into the patient, where they cause the formation of antibodies in the patient’s bloodstream. These antibodies block the allergic reaction, bringing much-desired relief.

Non-Allergic Rhinitis

Non-allergic rhinitis is known as vasomotor rhinitis in the medical world. The word vasomotor refers to the nerves that control the action of the blood vessels. The blood vessels and capillaries in the nose have the ability to expand and to constrict. While they are usually half-open, vigorous exercise causes them to constrict further, allowing for a greater intake of oxygen. Colds and allergic responses, on the other hand, cause them to expand, leading to congested membranes and a stuffy or clogged nose.

There are certain circumstances that can lead to vasomotor rhinitis. These include psychological stress, low thyroid function, pregnancy, overuse of decongesting nasal sprays and irritants such as perfumes or tobacco smoke. If vasomotor rhinitis is corrected early on, the associated discomfort can be reversed. If the condition is left untreated, the blood vessels and capillaries may lose their ability to constrict, leading to discomfort when lying down. A person suffering from vasomotor rhinitis can often benefit from surgery.

Infections

Infections are caused by the presence of a virus or foreign bacteria. Histamines released to fight the infection cause the nasal tissues to swell, leading the common “stuffy nose.” Antihistamines and decongestants can be helpful in relieving the symptoms of the “common cold.”

Infections of the nose and sinuses often follow on the heels of a cold. Severe sinus infections can cause pain in the upper teeth and cheeks, behind the eyes and in the forehead. Chronic sinus infections involve nasal obstruction and nasal or postnasal discharge, as well as the formation of polyps. Surgery may be required to remove the polyps.

Are There Any Risks to Treating Congestion?

Those who have a tendency to become drowsy when taking antihistamines should refrain from operating heavy equipment or driving vehicles following a dose. Failure to do so may result in serious injury or death.

Because decongestants elevate blood pressure and increase the pulse rate, patients who suffer from high blood pressure, glaucoma or difficulty urinating should consult a physician before taking these substances. As with all other medications, consult a doctor before taking a combination to avoid overdosing and unsafe drug interactions.

Steroids are often used in nasal decongesting agents. These powerful decongestants are administered as a spray to avoid the side effects of internal dosage. Because these medications are extremely potent, be sure to follow the directions carefully and to consult a doctor if vision changes or nasal bleeding develops.

Structural Abnormalities

Deformities of the nose or the nasal septum often require surgical correction. Deformities of this nature are often the result of childhood injuries. Seven percent of all newborn babies suffer from a significant nasal injury as a result of the birth process. Other injuries include sports injuries, trauma to the head and face, abuse, and the intentional inhalation of harmful substances such as cocaine or toxic household substances.

A common cause of nasal obstruction in children is the presence of enlarged adenoids. These tissues are located at the back of the nose, behind the palate. Children who suffer from enlarged adenoids may have noisy breathing and snore at night. Chronic mouth breathers may develop a sagging face and orthodontic deformities. A medical professional will often advise surgery to remove the adenoids and/or tonsils to correct this problem.

Other problems in this category include nasal tumor and the presence of foreign objects. Young children have been known to insert foreign objects into their noses. The presence of a foreign body can cause pain, swelling, bleeding and bad breath. It is important to remove the object as soon as it is noticed to prevent infection and possible aspiration into the lungs.

Is Nasal Surgery Beneficial?

Nasal surgery is a viable option for those who dislike the appearance of their nose or who have a structural abnormality that needs correction. These include a drooping nose tip, a nose that’s too large or too small, a structural nasal blockage, a birth defect, crookedness or misalignment.

Nasal surgery, also known as rhinoplasty, nose surgery, nose reshaping or a nose job, can help reposition a nose that is out of proportion to the rest of a person’s face or that features some other deformity. Nasal surgery that is performed with the sole aim to restore normal function to the nose is called functional rhinoplasty.

When selecting a facial plastic surgeon, it’s a good idea to ensure that he or she is certified by an organization such as the American Academy of Facial Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery and the American Academy of Otolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery. Certifications such as these represent a certain amount of credibility on the part of the plastic surgeon and ensures that they understand not just the form of the nose, but the function as well, providing good cosmetic and functional results.

Contact our staff for more information, schedule a consultation with Dr. David Hecht in Scottsdale, and get information about financing options and insurance coverage.

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