Are you facing trouble sleeping? Are disturbed sleeping cycles leaving you cranky and exhausted? You might have something called sleep apnea. Before we get into the discussion on home remedies for sleep apnea, let us understand the condition in detail.
What is sleep apnea?
A condition when you stop breathing for brief time periods in your sleep is known as sleep apnea. Those who have been diagnosed with sleep apnea are unable to breathe inadequate oxygen and this leaves them gasping for breath.
Many people confuse sleep apnea with snoring. On many occasions, people do not realise that they are not breathing. Hence are not aware of their disruptive sleeping cycles.
A lot of health complications have their root in sleep apnea. Apart from you feeling tired after poor sleep cycles, untreated sleep apnea can lead to mental health problems; compromised immune system; accelerated memory loss; and increased risk of heart failure.
Physicians mostly prescribe breathing devices and medication to treat sleep apnea. Some cases might require surgery. However, there are a number of home remedies and lifestyle changes that can bring positive changes in your sleep and life.
How can changes in your lifestyle help treat sleep apnea?
As we mentioned, there are some effective home remedies and traditional treatments available to treat sleep apnea. Lifestyle changes have a huge impact on your overall health which helps you treat the symptoms of sleep apnea.
Watch your weight
Research shows that obesity, mainly in the upper part of the body can enhance the risk of blocked airways and narrow nasal airways. Such obstructions do not let you breathe while you are asleep. Hence, your physician will tell you to maintain a healthy weight to reduce the symptoms of sleep apnea.
In a number of cases where patients were able to reduce their weight could avoid surgery altogether. Or did not have to opt for CPAP therapy in the long term.
Give yoga a go
The benefits of yoga are not limited to weight loss. Yoga is proven to help strengthen hearts, your respiratory system and stimulate the flow of oxygen. These improvements are beneficial to the reduction of symptoms of sleep apnea.
With the help of breathing exercises, oxygen saturation in your blood improves and hence the interruptions in your sleep also reduce subsequently.
Try using humidifiers
If you are living in a dry climate, use a humidifier in your bedroom. The respiratory system and nasal passages can get more irritated when you continuously breathe in dry air. Humidifiers can help you open up the airways and decrease congestions.
You can also add a couple of essential oils to your humidifiers such as lavender, eucalyptus, or peppermint. A couple of drops will help you soothe your airways and decrease inflammation.
If you are using a humidifier, please make sure you are cleaning it at regular intervals. Since humidifiers bring in moisture, fungus and bacteria infect them very easily.
Pay attention to your sleep positions
Did you know that sleeping on your back can worsen your sleep apnea? It might seem to be something vaguely insignificant. But altering your sleep position can bring a drastic change in your sleep apnea.
Studies have confirmed that children with sleep apnea experienced more difficulty breathing while laying on their backs (also known as supine position). Ask your doctor about alternate sleep positions as a method of treating your sleep apnea.
Avoid alcohol and quit smoking
If you have the habit of smoking, this is a good time to consider quitting! Limit your consumption of alcohol as much as possible.
Alcohol and tobacco are responsible for the inflammation of your airways. It leads to a disrupted sleep cycle and snoring. If not controlled or limited, it can worsen your sleep apnea. These are huge changes in your lifestyle. Consult with your doctor if you require any advice or assistance.
Try oral appliances
SomnoMed has a great range of oral appliances to help improve the symptoms of sleep apnea. An oral appliance resets the position of your jaw or your tongue (depending on the problem area) and opens up the airway while you are asleep. There are two broad categories of oral appliances when it comes to treating sleep apnea — mandibular advancement device, and tongue stabilizing device.
You can choose from their affordable range or opt for dentist fitted devices to meet your needs. Oral appliances are great choices for those who cannot tolerate CPAP devices.
To wrap up, sleep apnea is a treatable condition. With a few lifestyle changes, you can effectively manage its symptoms. However, traditional methods of treatment and any medical advice from your physician should not be ignored.
If you are considering any of these alternative treatments, discuss them with your doctor. In case of symptoms begin to worsen, do not delay or hesitate in seeking medical attention.
Wilbert Bail is a sports and health enthusiast. He has an adventurous mind but seldom travels as he would rather be in the gym working out. He likes techie stuff and enjoys the weekend watching basketball.