Sleep Apnea Prevention & Treatment

Published: April 21, 2010

a a a

How to Prevent Against This

In many situations, sleep apnea is not preventable. Many people experience sleep apnea because of heredity and environmental risk factors. Sleep apnea also tends to run in the family, so a genetic link might be a possibility for some patients. You may experience sleep apnea for a variety of reasons, including the shape of your air passageways, bones, and nasal passages. Even though you may not be able to prevent sleep apnea, measures can be taken to reduce the impact of problems related to sleep apnea. If you keep your symptoms under control, and if you catch the condition early, you should be able to treat your sleep apnea with success.

To prevent sleep apnea, you need to maintain a healthy body weight. When a person is overweight, their windpipes can become constricted. Maintaining a healthy body weight reduces this risk. If you are overweight, you should work with a dietician or doctor to find a plan that can help you get your weight under control.

You can also prevent symptoms of sleep apnea by keeping your allergies under control. Many people experience sleep apnea because of inflammation and problems related to allergies. Talk to your doctor about options that are available to kept you control your allergies, especially if you notice them becoming worse in the day time.

Lifestyle changes can be sufficient in regulating mild sleep apnea. Avoid alcohol and medications than cause drowsiness. These substances can interfere with the throat's ability to stay open when a person is sleeping. Sleep apnea patients should also avoid smoking.

If you have central sleep apnea, you should avoid taking sleep aids. These medications can be fatal for people with neurological conditions.

If you have obstructive sleep apnea, you should get it under control as soon as possible. Sometimes, obstructive sleep apnea can cause central sleep apnea. By catching obstructive sleep apnea early, you can eliminate the possibility that you will develop more serious conditions in addition to the one that you already have.

If you think that you might have sleep apnea, or if you feel unexplained fatigue, you should talk to a doctor about undergoing a sleep test to monitor your sleeping cycle. You will benefit from a conclusive diagnosis for your sleep apnea or other sleep disorder.

Diet Tips

Obesity is a major cause of sleep apnea. When a person is overweight, their windpipe can become constricted, reducing air flow to the lungs. For this reason, it is important to maintain a healthy weight and balanced diet. If you are overweight, you can prevent and treat sleep apnea by getting in shape and losing weight. A dietician can work with you to create a diet plan that can help you lose weight.

Treatment & Relief Methods

A continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) device is the most common treatment for sleep apnea. Sleep apnea patients must wear this device whenever they sleep in order to regulate air pressure in the throat. The CPAP machine is portable, so it can be used at home and during travel.

Obstructive sleep apnea occurs when the windpipe narrows as a result of the muscles becoming relaxed during sleep. As a result, blood oxygen levels become lowered, and sleeping patterns are disrupted. The CPAP machine treats this problem by blowing air at a prescribed pressure. In general, a physician determines the prescribed pressure during an overnight sleep test in a sleep laboratory. This pressure will counteract obstructive sleep apnea and help maintain healthy sleeping patterns. Many patients will notice an improved quality of life after a single night's CPAP treatment.

Some patients with mild sleep apnea do not need CPAP treatments at all. Nasal sprays and allergy medicines can help keep breathing passages open.

A mouthpiece can help people keep their airways open by regulating the jaw and tongue. Mouthpieces may require frequent adjustments.

If sleep apnea is a result of an underlying neurological condition, the patient may need to take medication that facilitates breathing. These kinds of patients should avoid taking sleeping pills or sedatives.

Common Surgeries

Some sleep apnea patients need surgery to widen the airways. These surgical procedures generally involve removing, shrinking, and stiffening excess tissue. Surgical procedures for sleep apnea result in painful side effects. If you are considering surgery, it is important that you consult with a doctor.

More in Diseases & Conditions

  • Bronchitis

    Bronchitis is a condition caused by inflamed air passages. the disease can be chronic... more

  • Swine Flu (H1N1)

    With the global spread of swine flu, it's very important to stay up to date regarding... more

  • Armpit Lump

    Some types of armpit lumps do not require treatment, but you should always visit your... more

New on SymptomFind

a a a