Obstructive sleep apnea is one of the most common sleep disorders present in America today. In fact, one in every twenty people gets diagnosed with sleep apnea, so if you find it challenging or currently struggle to get a good night’s sleep, it’s important to know you’re not alone.
Learning how to get rid of sleep apnea, or at least how to manage it more effectively, is important for you to achieve eight hours of sleep each night.
Here’s everything you need to know about the sleep disorder, along with a few home remedies for sleep apnea that are still budget-friendly.
What Is Sleep Apnea?
Before we start exploring some of the more common home remedies for sleep apnea, it’s helpful to start with a basic definition. There are two main types of sleep apnea - obstructive sleep apnea, or OSA, and central sleep apnea, also known as CSA.
OSA occurs when the muscles present in the back of your throat involuntarily relax, thereby blocking your airways. This is why you might wake up in the middle of snoring as a symptom. CSA is a lot less common and occurs when your brain struggles to send the right signals to the muscles to help control your breathing.
The most common reasons for sleep apnea range from the size of your throat or jaw, your weight, as well as your age - men over sixty are most likely to struggle with this. If you’re noticing you struggle constantly to keep your breathing consistent when you fall asleep, check with your physician to confirm whether simple home remedies for sleep apnea will do, or if you require more advanced medication.
What Are The Most Recommended Sleep Apnea Solutions?
If you’ve been diagnosed with sleep apnea by a physician, there are a couple of routes of treatment he might suggest:
- Continuous positive airway pressure: Also known as a CPAP machine, this simple device delivers strong air pressure through a mask while you sleep, ensuring your upper airways remain open throughout the night. Some people find CPAP machines uncomfortable to wear through the night because they restrict movement, and they can be noisy and therefore disruptive if you share your bedroom.
- Nasal attachments: Not unlike the nasal strips you keep seeing advertised on TV, some doctors might prescribe strong nasal attachments that create enough pressure to keep your airways open for easy breathing and deep, high-quality sleep.
- Mouthguards: Another often-prescribed solution to sleep apnea includes mouthguards. These work by snapping over your teeth and allowing your lower jaw to rest forward with ease, so that your muscles don’t block your airways while you’re sleeping.
How Do You Treat Sleep Apnea Naturally?
There are a few home remedies for sleep apnea that can be just as effective in treating this disorder. Here are a few sleep apnea solutions that don’t require more than a few minor lifestyle changes:
#1 - Eat Healthy
Being overweight can leave you more susceptible to sleep disorders such as sleep apnea. One of the easiest home remedies for sleep apnea is simply to try and eat a healthier diet that is rich with foods that help you sleep better. This improves the quality of your sleep while helping you shed excess pounds.
It’s important to remember that eating healthy is not about being restrictive, but choosing foods that are going to fuel your body the right way, and keep your energy levels consistent throughout the day.
#2 - Exercise Regularly
Consistent exercise goes hand in hand with a healthy diet to help combat obstructive sleep apnea. Exercising is also one of the home remedies for sleep apnea that has a positive impact beyond sleeping better.
Studies have proven that exercise isn’t just about maintaining a certain type of physique - it can also help improve heart health, boost mood; and of course, keep your sleep schedule as healthy as possible.
#3 - Avoid Drinking & Smoking
You might notice many home remedies for sleep apnea are just to avoid habits that impact your physical health. Smoking is harmful to your lungs and health in a number of ways. It can also lead to swelling of the upper airways which causes and even exacerbates sleep apnea.
Excessive drinking can also affect your breathing while asleep, relaxing your throat muscles and causing increased snoring. Even if you find a nightcap helps you fall asleep faster, it’s important to keep in mind that drinking does a lot more damage to your sleep cycle in the long term.
#4 - Try Sleeping On Your Side
Though most sleep experts recommend sleeping on your back, if you have sleep apnea, the side-sleeping position is going to be a lot better for you. If you’re struggling to adapt to sleep in your new position, switching up your sleep setup can help.
Whether you choose a memory foam or hybrid mattress, be sure to find something that properly contours and supports your body as you rest. A body pillow can also help support you as you sleep on your side, without causing discomfort.
#5 - Add A Pillow To Your Sleep Setup
Propping your head using a comfy pillow can help clear your airways and prevent any trouble breathing you might experience in your sleep. Sleeping at an angle of 60 degrees can be helpful if you’re trying to keep your airways clear.
Willing to invest in a little extra? An adjustable bed frame can be set to different, custom positions that can help make resting better a lot easier than you might expect.
Other Sleep Apnea Solutions You Might Find Useful
If you’ve tried some or all of the above suggestions, don’t fret - there are a few other simple changes you can make for an improved chance of better sleep. Yoga has a positive impact on mood and respiratory strength and has been shown to lead to deeper sleep.
Some home remedies for sleep apnea focus on a more holistic approach to healing. Some people have found the use of acupuncture useful in improving their sleep apnea. Others have found better luck in herbal supplements, such as valerian root and passionflower, when treating their sleep apnea.
These home remedies for sleep apnea can be done with minimal effort, but are still highly effective when it comes to achieving a good night’s sleep. Whether it’s finding the right position to sleep in, or incorporating a simple workout into your daily routine, these sleep apnea solutions are going to encourage you to get into a better rhythm with your sleep.
Are you experiencing sleep apnea? Share your thoughts in the comments.
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Disclaimer. We love sleep and we want you to get the best sleep possible. But we do not provide medical advice. This blog is intended for informational purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional medical info, diagnosis, or treatment. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on our blog.