Good sleep is an essential part of our lives. That’s why we are always advised to get enough sleep (at least 7 hours a night for adults). Without enough sleep, you face the risk of developing major health problems, such as diabetes, depression, obesity, heart disease, and many others. One of the main reasons why some people don’t get enough sleep is sleep apnea.
This is a serious sleep disorder that involves periodic disruptions in breathing when the patient is sleeping. There are different types of sleep apnea, depending on its severity. However, the most common one is obstructive sleep apnea. It occurs when throat muscles relax intermittently during sleep, thus blocking your airway. Continue reading to know the most effective treatments for sleep apnea.
Treatments for Sleep Apnea
For the less severe cases of sleep apnea, your doctor may advise you to make lifestyle changes like losing weight, quitting alcohol and cigarettes, among others. You may also be asked to seek treatment for nasal allergies if you are allergic. But if these remedies don’t work for you, other more advanced treatment options will be recommended.
There are different types of therapies that can be used to treat sleep apnea. For instance, you may be given continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP), which involves using a device to supply you with air through a face mask during sleep. If this device doesn’t work, you may be given an Auto-CPAP device that automatically adjusts the pressure or a bi-level PAP, which provides different amounts of stress when you inhale and exhale.
Another type of therapy is keeping your throat open during sleep with an oral device. This device is designed to keep your throat open by pushing your jaw forward. However, make sure to try different devices to choose the one that works for you. You can also try to use supplemental oxygen while you sleep. Fortunately, there are various forms of oxygen that you can use.
Alternatively, you can use adaptive servo-ventilation (ASV). This is an airflow device that studies your breathing pattern and stores the data in an integrated computer. The device then uses this information to normalize your breathing pattern and prevent pauses when you are asleep.
Surgery should only be considered when all other treatment options have failed. Different types of surgical procedures can be used to treat sleep apnea, including tissue removal, tissue shrinkage, jaw repositioning, implants, nerve stimulation, and a new airway (tracheostomy). Make sure you talk to a qualified medical doctor before you try any of these treatments.