Sleep apnea is a condition which causes blockage in breathing for short periods while a person is asleep. People who suffer from sleep apnea don’t take in enough oxygen. That is why they gasp and often wake up. What is complicated about this condition is that often times people are unaware that their breathing stops, and they consider their sleep cycle normal.
Sleep apnea sounds a lot like snoring, and those who are experiencing it might actually be quite unconcerned. After all, some snoring doesn’t seem like a serious health problem. And this is where we may be mistaken. Sleep apnea can cause a number of health complications additionally to leaving you more tired in the morning.
If left untreated, this sleeping condition can weaken your immune function, contribute to memory loss, increase your risk of heart failure and lead to mental health problems. Some treatments that work for people with sleep apnea include breathing devices, medication, and even surgery. However, there are a lot of things you can do to help yourself by creating a lifestyle that suits people who have to live with sleep apnea.
Maintain a Healthy Weight
Obesity, especially in the upper body, can boost the risk of airway obstruction and narrow nasal passages. These obstructions can cause you to stop breathing suddenly or for lengths of time while you are asleep. So, if you are overweight and struggle with sleep apnea, it would be optimal for you to lose weight, and of course, to maintain a healthy weight. Research Trusted Source shows that weight reduction in people with obesity can rule out the need for upper airway surgery or long-term CPAP therapy. If this is the case for you, you should have in mind that if you gain weight, you are at risk for the condition to return.
Bring Yoga into Your Life
Sleep apnea is connected to decreased oxygen saturation in the blood. If you practice yoga on a daily basis, it will improve your oxygen levels through its abundant breathing exercises. As you probably know, any regular exercise increases your energy level and strengthens your heart, and any exercise would do you good, but the reason why we recommend yoga is that it specifically improves respiratory strength and encourages oxygen flow. The result would be reduced sleep interruptions and better sleep. Yoga will bring peace to your mind and improve your health overall, so you should definitely try it.
Use a Humidifier
Dry air can irritate the respiratory system. A humidifier can open your airways and encourage clearer breathing. That is why you should get a humidifier to add moisture to the air. Especially if you live in an area with polluted air, do not hesitate to get one. You can add lavender, peppermint, or eucalyptus oil to a humidifier. These brilliant oils are well known for their anti-inflammatory and soothing benefits.
Avoid Alcohol and Smoking
Alcohol relaxes the throat muscles that control breathing. This might cause snoring and an interrupted sleep cycle. It might also provoke inflammation in your airways, blocking your airflow. Alike the alcohol, tobacco usage can also contribute to inflammation and swelling in your airways. These habits can worsen your snoring and your sleep apnea. A 2012 study Trusted Source spotted smoking as a risk factor for developing sleep apnea. So, it is best to avoid alcohol and smoking entirely. Quit these vices and lead a healthier life that will reduce sleep apnea complications.
Alter Your Sleep Position
A 2006 study says that more than half of obstructive sleep apnea cases are actually dependent on sleep position. StudiesTrusted Source advises sleeping on your back, known as the supine position can take a turn for the worse. For some adults, sleeping on the side can ease breathing and return it to normal. On the other hand, a 2002 StudyTrusted Source suggests that children who experience sleep apnea actually sleep better on their backs. Seemingly a small thing, your sleep position might hold the secret to your good night’s sleep.
We strongly recommend you to try the above-mentioned lifestyle remedies. However, the essential thing to remember is that traditional treatments are of utmost importance. Prescribed medications and sometimes surgery are part of the necessary approaches to treat this sleep condition. Our advice is to absolutely follow your doctor’s orders, and additionally, try these lifestyle remedies to help with your sleep issues.