Are you one of the couples experiencing snoring and relationship troubles? Sleep apnea can significantly impact your well-being and quality of life. It is a severe sleep disorder that causes breathing to stop and start repeatedly during sleep. Left untreated can lead to high blood pressure, heart disease, and other health problems.
But did you know there are ways to manage this condition without relying solely on machines?
Read on to learn more.
What Simple Changes Can You Make to Tackle Sleep Apnea More Effectively?
Here are six easy lifestyle changes and alternatives you can implement today to alleviate sleep apnea symptoms and improve the quality of your rest without CPAP treatment.
Lose Weight to Breathe Easier
Obesity is a common risk factor for sleep apnea. Losing those extra pounds can help reduce or eliminate sleep apnea symptoms if you’re overweight. Every pound you shed reduces the fat deposits around your upper airways, helping you breathe more comfortably at night. Consult a sleep apnea specialist for weight loss strategies that suit your situation.
Boost Your Physical Activity
Increasing your physical activity helps with weight loss and can directly improve sleep apnea symptoms. Regular exercise helps tone muscles, including those responsible for keeping your airway open. Additionally, engaging in daily physical activity helps provide the bonus of improved sleep quality and increased energy levels.
Limit Alcohol Consumption and Quit Smoking
Both alcohol consumption and smoking can exacerbate sleep apnea symptoms. Alcohol relaxes the throat muscles, worsening airway obstruction, while smoking causes inflammation in the airways, making breathing harder. Reducing your drinking and quitting smoking can significantly improve sleep apnea symptoms and lead to a better night’s rest.
Change Your Sleep Position
Many people experience worsened sleep apnea symptoms when sleeping on their backs. By shifting to a side-sleeping position, you may reduce these symptoms significantly. You can use pillows explicitly designed for side sleepers or try a different mattress type, such as one that elevates your head. However, remember that changing your sleep position is not a one-size-fits-all solution – consult a sleep expert to find the best approach.
Consider Dental Devices as an Alternative
A dental device, or oral appliance therapy, is a potentially effective alternative to CPAP therapy for some individuals with sleep apnea. These appliances help open the airway by bringing the lower jaw forward or pulling the tongue forward. While dental devices can be more expensive than a CPAP machine, they are less intrusive and can significantly improve sleep apnea symptoms for suitable candidates.
Prioritize Quality Sleep Hygiene
Practicing good sleep hygiene may not directly treat sleep apnea, but it can help improve overall sleep quality. Set a consistent sleep schedule and avoid stimulating activities such as using electronic devices close to bedtime. Incorporate relaxation techniques, like meditation or deep breathing exercises, to help unwind and prepare for a restful night’s sleep.
By taking an active role in your health, you can significantly progress in addressing your sleep apnea symptoms. At the same time, not all these suggestions are guaranteed to work for everyone. These minor lifestyle adjustments can lead to a better night’s sleep overall.
Remember to consult with a sleep apnea expert and involve them in your journey to improve rest quality.