Sleep apnea is a disorder in which a person repeatedly stops and starts breathing while sleeping.
It’s incredibly common, affecting hundreds of thousands of people in the United States every year. It can be dangerous, and you should talk to a medical professional if you think you have it.
Unfortunately, sleep apnea is not curable. It can last for a couple of years or your entire lifetime. But there are some things you can do to treat the disorder and find relief from your symptoms.
Make Lifestyle Changes
Sleep apnea is most common among older men and those who are overweight. Smoking or consuming a lot of caffeine are added risk factors.
Getting in shape and eating healthier can help decrease the severity of chronic sleep apnea. Exercise plays an important role in combating symptoms.
First, it helps your body transition into a more relaxed state. Second, certain exercises, such as yoga, strengthen the neck and the airways. This can improve breathing both when you’re awake and asleep.
You should also avoid caffeine, alcohol, smoking and sleeping pills. All these will further exacerbate the problem and leave you feeling tired even after a full night’s sleep.
Stick to a Healthy Sleep Schedule
Another home technique you can try is to create a good sleeping routine. Go to bed at the same time every night and try to wake up at the same time as well.
When your body becomes accustomed to a steady schedule, it’s better able to relax and sleep. As a result, this decreases the frequency of sleep apnea episodes.
Prepare Your Body Before Bedtime
If you struggle with sleep apnea, you can do a couple things immediately before you go to bed that can help. The first is to try to fall asleep on your side. This is the best position for your airway. The worst position is on your back.
Another way you can prepare your body for sleep is by elevating your head to open your airways.
Talk with a Doctor About Sleep Apnea
If after trying all these tips, you still struggle with exhaustion and sleep apnea, you should talk with a medical professional. Oral surgeons can help you with breathing-assisted machines, dental devices, surgery and more.
With new machines and better technology, treatment for sleep apnea is becoming more effective. You don’t have to settle for constant headaches or exhaustion. Instead, talk with someone here at Northeast Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery.
We’ve helped hundreds of patients combat their sleep apnea and we can help you too. Call us to schedule a consultation today.