What is a deviated septum?
A deviated septum is a condition in which the nasal septum -- the bone and cartilage that divide the nasal cavity of the nose in half -- is significantly off center, or crooked, making breathing difficult. Most people have some sort of imbalance in the size of their breathing passages. In fact, estimates indicate that 80% of people, most unknowingly, have some sort of misalignment to their nasal septum. Only the more severe imbalances cause significant breathing problems and require treatment.
Deviated Septum Causes
Some people are born with a deviated septum. Other people develop a deviated septum after injury or trauma to the nose.
Deviated Septum Symptoms
The most common symptom of a deviated septum is nasal congestion, with one side of the nose being more congested than the other, along with difficulty breathing. Recurrent or repeated sinus infections can also be a sign of a deviated septum. Other symptoms include frequent:
A deviated septum may also cause sleep apnea, a serious condition in which a person stops breathing during sleep.
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