Nasal blockage can be extremely uncomfortable and can lead to mouth breathing, snoring and obstructive sleep apnoea. The common causes of nasal obstruction include allergic rhinitis, which is a reaction by the nose to irritative particles such as tree and grass pollen and house dust mite. Other causes include septal deviation which is when the nasal septum that divides the nose into left and right cavities, becomes bent blocking the airflow through one or both nostrils. Acute and chronic sinusitis also cause nasal congestion.
Treatment of rhinitis invariably involves medical treatment such as nasal sprays and antihistamines. Septal deviation would usually be treated with a day case operation called a septoplasty. This is done under a general anaesthetic with all the wounds hidden inside the nose.
Treatment of chronic and acute sinusitis usually begins with a course of antibiotics and drops/sprays for the nose to help with decongestion. Failing this surgery may be indicated. The surgery can be done as a daycase under general anaesthetic. Endoscopic sinus surgery involves the use of telescopes inside the nose to help widen the natural sinus openings to allow their better drainage. The surgery is performed with balloons that gently expand the natural sinus openings. There are no scars on the face with these operations