What You Need to Know About Nightlase.
What is Nightlase?
Nightlase is a non-invasive laser treatment used to increase a patient’s airway, resulting in better sleep and reduced snoring. The treatment induces tightening of the soft tissues in the back of the throat and airway, contracting these tissues and expanding the airway. A Nightlase treatment consists of 3-4 treatments over 9-12 weeks. Each appointment is approximately 45 minutes long. The final results often last up to a year and treatments may be repeated as needed.
Am I a Candidate for Nightlase?
Is Snoring more than just an annoying sound?
Snoring generally masks a more serious health condition such as sleep apnea. Snoring occurs because there’s a partial blockage of the airway which creates the snoring sound, whereas sleep apnea is characterized by a complete blockage of the airway which lasts for at least 10 seconds. When a person experiences a sleep apnea event, they are actually not breathing for those 10 seconds or more.
Diagnosis of Sleep Apnea is Crucial.
Your dentist is often sufficiently trained to identify when there are anatomical risk factors which might contribute to sleep apnea issues or to snoring. Before embarking on Nightlase treatment, your dentist will conduct a thorough oral examination and take images of the oral cavity to see if you are a good candidate for the treatment. This oral examination will generally identify factors such as a large tongue or an enlarged pallet, or any other factors which might contribute to sleep apnea or snoring.
Nightlase may Eliminate Snoring, but Sleep Apnea may Persist.
Snoring is actually one of the most common symptoms experienced by people who have sleep apnea, but it’s also possible for people bothered by sleep apnea to not snore all. This means it’s entirely possible that if you don’t have a thorough examination before treatment, that your snoring problem might be eliminated, but that you could still have sleep apnea which remains undiagnosed. The truth is, that most people who persistently snore are probably also afflicted with sleep apnea, so it’s important to have a full diagnosis before proceeding with Nightlase treatment.
Nightlase is not a quick fix
The full process for Nightlase treatment generally takes a few months, so you may not experience immediate results after one or two treatments. Nightlase therapy is effective because it makes use of laser energy, and after soft tissue is exposed to laser energy, it regenerates and tightens up. The Nightlase treatment at the Breathing and Sleep Center of Colorado Springs is a package of 3-4 treatments, which provides our patients the opportunity for maximum results. Some patients may require additional or touch up treatments after these initial 3-4 treatments.
Is the Nightlase Treatment Painful?
Some patients have reported having a dry throat and mouth after their treatments. Soreness and/or restrictions have not been reported, and patients can eat and drink immediately following the appointments. Staying hydrated can be helpful before and after the treatment to reduce dryness.