Sleep apnea can kill you. The condition literally stops your breathing for short periods of time in your sleep. The list of celebrities who died from sleep apnea includes Carrie Fisher, James Gandolfini, John Candy, Jerry Garcia, and even William Howard Taft.
Fortunately, there are many things you can do to change and lessen your sleep apnea. We have collected some of the most pertinent sleep apnea tips in this guide.
Read on to find out how to combat this condition naturally.
3 Sleep Apnea Tips to Help You Sleep at Night
You may have heard the tip about losing weight to combat sleep apnea. While it is true that weight loss can lessen the symptoms of sleep apnea, we did not include this tip in the following list. That is because not all people with sleep apnea need to lose weight, and we do not want this to be another health-oriented list telling you to lose weight.
Instead, we will focus on solutions you may not have considered. Yet when you see them, many of them will seem like common sense.
See for yourself.
1. Use a Mouthguard
A mouthguard can align your jaw and breathing passage to reduce the symptoms of sleep apnea. A custom mouthguard, like the ones you get from the dentist, can work wonders. But if you can’t spend the money to get a custom mouthguard made, you can even see relief by seeking out the mouthguards you might find in a sporting goods store.
A CPAP machine, the standard treatment for sleep apnea, is a much fancier version of a mouthguard. Sometimes insurance will even help you cover a CPAP. You can find out more about insurance and sleep apnea in this guide.
2. Cut Back on Booze and Substances
Cutting back on alcohol and drugs will improve many aspects of your life. Your sleep apnea systems are included in that list.
One reason for this is that alcohol can change the composition of your throat so it has less muscle tone. Your biceps aren’t the only muscles that need relief. This can interfere with your air flow when you sleep.
Drugs and sleep apnea make a deadly combination as well, and all sorts of drugs are part of that equation. Legendary Houston rapper Pimp C died because of the effects of sleep apnea in combination with abusing cough syrup.
3. Change Positions
Anyone with sleep apnea can tell you that it is worst when you sleep on your back. Even if there were no science behind it, you can tell from the heaviness you feel in the back of your throat.
It turns out there is science behind this heaviness. It is the weight of your tongue and palate tissue pressing up against your throat.
Changing your sleep position can reduce this symptom and lessen snoring. Experts call this positional therapy. We call it sleeping on your side or your stomach.
We hope this collection of sleep apnea tips has shown you some simple solutions to a common problem. Sleep apnea is unpleasant and even dangerous, but it does not have to go untreated.
To continue your self-help journey, check out our other health tips.