There are an estimated 18 million adults in the United States who suffer from Obstructive Sleep Apnea. Sleep apnea causes your breathing to stop and start as you sleep, which can have a negative impact on your quality of life.
Symptoms of sleep apnea include making choking or gasping noises during sleep and excessive tiredness throughout the day. To help reduce symptoms, here are 5 self-care strategies for obstructive sleep apnea.
Maintain a Healthy Weight
One of the best ways to reduce symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea is by maintaining a healthy weight. Obesity in the upper body can increase your risk of narrow nasal passages and airway obstruction, causing you to stop breathing for short intervals while you are asleep. Keeping in control of your weight will reduce the symptoms of sleep apnea.
There has been a lot of research carried out that proves the benefits of regular exercise for those with obstructive sleep apnea. Regular exercise can strengthen your heart, increase energy levels, and reduce anxiety. Yoga in particular encourages oxygen flow and boosts your respiratory strength. In addition to the benefits listed, yoga can increase flexibility, protect you from injury, and improve athletic performance.
Follow a Balanced Diet
Some research suggests that those living with sleep apnea are more likely to pick unhealthy foods at mealtime. When you don’t get plenty of sleep, you may be more prone to eating foods full of carbohydrates. Feeling tired and fatigued are common symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea, meaning you may want to eat more and be less satisfied when you do. Following a balanced diet packed with fruits, vegetables, and protein will ensure you get the nutrients and vitamins you need, as well as potentially help with symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea.
Develop a Good Sleep Routine
For your general health and wellbeing, it’s vital that you get plenty of shut-eye. Unfortunately, those living with obstructive sleep apnea may find it difficult to get a good night’s rest. With more than half of those with the condition having trouble with their breathing when they sleep, it’s advised to sleep in other positions aside from your back. There are devices that you can use to improve your breathing for obstructive sleep apnea, such as a CPAP machine. You may want to visit medgurumedicalsupply.com to find out more about CPAP machines.
Avoid Smoking & Alcohol
There are several lifestyle changes that you can make to improve your sleeping habits and boost your health. Try quitting smoking or lowering your alcohol intake, both of which can contribute towards reducing sleep apnea complications. Alcohol is known to relax the throat muscles that control your breathing, causing you to snore and have an interrupted sleep cycle. Like alcohol, smoking can contribute to swelling and inflammation in your airways, making your snoring worse.
If left untreated, obstructive sleep apnea can heighten your risk of a stroke, heart disease, and blood pressure, therefore, using all the tips listed above can improve your general health and wellbeing and potentially reduce symptoms.