The septum is the wall of cartilage and bone that separates your nostrils from one another. When this wall becomes misaligned or crooked, it is classified as a deviated septum which can make breathing difficult for some people.
Almost nobody in the world has the perfect nose, ‘perfect’ meaning that the left and right half of the nose is completely equal. In fact, the majority of people have some degree of imbalance in the diameter of their breathing passages. Estimates suggest that 80% of individuals, most of who are unaware, have some form of incorrect alignment to their nasal septum. Only the more severe misaligned nasal septums cause serious breathing problems and need treatment.
What Causes a Deviated Septum?
Deviated septums often arise in individuals who suffer trauma to the nose from injury from car accidents, fighting or sports. In others, it can be due to a congenital disorder, caused by compression during childbirth.
Here are five symptoms to help you recognise a deviated septum.
In some cases, a deviated septum can lead to frequent nosebleeds. That’s because the arch of the septum creates a disturbance as air passes through the nostril. Think about your septum like a wing of a plane or a hood of a car. The more aerodynamic the surface area is, the easier it is for air to pass by the septum. In noses, the more disturbance on the septum, the drier it becomes, which can lead to nose bleeds.
Nearly all deviated septum symptoms can lead to trouble sleeping. When you come down with a cold, the frustration of trying to sleep when you’re heavily congested is hard to manage. Now imagine that congestion almost every time you lay down to sleep at night. A deviated septum can cause you to lose sleep, and that can make you very irritable. More critically, a deviated symptom can contribute to sleep apnea, which is a severe sleep disorder and in some cases can become fatal.
People with a deviated septum tend to feel “blocked up.” That feeling can lead to headaches and facial pain. In some individuals, nose and facial pain are caused by the nasal septum reaching out to the outside wall of your nose. This would be classified as a severely deviated septum and one that would need an exam by a nose job surgeon. If you are in Brisbane area, we recommend to visit Dr Scamp cosmetic clinic.
An out of proportioned septum makes it harder for air to pass through the nostrils and into your lungs. Consequently, you may have a hard time breathing—especially if you have allergies or develop a cold. Those conditions make your nasal passages narrow and swell, which further constricts your breathing ability.
Impaired breathing or a blocked airway through your nose often leads to post-nasal drip, sinus infections, or the common cold. If medication does not help improve these symptoms, you should seek medical advice as soon as possible.