Sleep apnea is a serious sleep abnormality in which the breathing suddenly stops and starts again, when sleeping. An estimated 7% of men and 5% of women in the world have sleep apnea. Also, globally, about 100 million people suffer from sleep apnea. Symptoms Of Sleep Apnea The most common… ...Show more
Sleep apnea is a serious sleep abnormality in which the breathing suddenly stops and starts again, when sleeping. An estimated 7% of men and 5% of women in the world have sleep apnea. Also, globally, about 100 million people suffer from sleep apnea.Symptoms Of Sleep ApneaThe most common signs and symptoms of sleep apnea include:
Headache that occurs only in the morning
Gasping for air during sleep
Trouble with sleeping
Causes Of Sleep ApneaMedically, sleep apnea occurs when the muscles located at the end of the throat are relaxed.This relaxed muscle makes your airways narrower whenever you breathe in which reduces the amount of air flowing in. The brain detects your struggle with breathing and rouses you from sleep so the airways can be reopened. The awakening process is so brief that you may not remember it.In some other severe (and rare) form of Sleep Apnea, the brain refuses to send signals to the breathing muscles.Who can be affected:The sleep disorder can affect anyone, not leaving out children. But a number of factors that trigger its occurrence include:Obesity: Excessive weight increases the risk of sleep apnea. Fats present in the upper airway can disrupt proper air flow.Narrowed airway: People with narrow throat (which are often inherited) have a higher risk of sleep apnea.Male: The possibility of males having sleep apnea is twice or thrice that of females. Also, women, after menopause have a higher risk.Age: Sleep apnea is most common among older adults.Family history: Having a family history of sleep apnea might trigger the possibility of having one too.Other factors include smoking, excessive alcohol intake, and heart disorder.Lifestyle changes for the treatment Of Sleep ApneaFor mild cases of sleep apnea, a change in lifestyle is recommended. They include:
Shed off some pounds
Losing weight can open your throat and reduce sleep apnea.
Smoking increases inflammation in the throat. So it's advisable to stop smoking.
Avoid using sleeping pills or taking alcohol before sleeping. It disrupts smooth breathing.
Maintain Regular Exercise: Regular exercise has a major influence on the quality of sleep. Yoga is also a good practice that will strengthen your airways.
Avoid caffeinated drinks and heavy meals at night.
Maintain a consistent sleep hour. It keeps you relaxed and you sleep better.
Bedtime steps to reducing sleep apnea
Sleep on your side
Don't sleep on your back. It makes it easier for your soft tissues and tongue to interfere with smooth breathing.
Move your head up
Raise your bed's head by up to 6 inches. You can also use a cervical pillow for the elevation.
Use a nasal dilator or nasal irrigation system to keep your nasal passage open at night.
If these steps don't improve your symptoms or if you're suffering from a severe level of apnea, medical treatment might be recommended. There are certain devices that can aid free breathing during sleep. Other forms of treatment include surgery and therapy.Going beyond in the holistic approachLouise Hay, Motivational leader and empowerment coach who has done pathbreaking work in supporting HIV/AIDS patients and their families, has said that, “Illness however mild or severe is an indicator of your emotional state, caused by your thoughts and focus.” According to her, the main cause of Sleep Apnea is: Fear, anxiety, and feeling threatened. One of the ways of healing this is through saying or writing affirmations. Her affirmation for healing Sleep Apnea is: I lovingly protect myself with thought of joy and peace. The past is forgiven and forgotten. I am free in this moment.Show less