Obstructive sleep apnoea is a sleep-breathing disorder that can have physical, emotional, and behavioural effects on your body. It occurs when your neck muscles relax and close off your airway while you're sleeping, preventing you from breathing. You may snore, have difficulty in sleeping or feel exhausted even after eight hours of sleep. If the condition is left untreated, it can cause health complications such as stress, increased blood pressure, heart failure, diabetes, etc. You can improve your condition by making lifestyle changes such as losing weight, exercising, quitting smoking and alcohol, etc.
Lifestyle Changes You Should Follow
People with obesity are most likely to develop sleep apnoea due to the additional fat tissue that results in blocking the upper airways. Therefore, losing weight can help improve your condition, and you can do so by exercising. It is important to stay physically fit and active to manage your weight and improve the overall health condition of your body.
You should maintain a healthy diet low in calories and fats to maintain a healthy weight. You should also avoid foods that contain saturated fats, excess sugar and salt, and cholesterol. In addition, you should include fruits and vegetables that provide you with essential vitamins and minerals.
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Smoking can cause many health complications, one of which is worsening the symptoms of sleep apnoea. People who smoke are more likely to develop sleep apnea than non-smokers. This is because it may worsen fluid retention and inflammation in the upper airway. Therefore, you should quit smoking to prevent sleep apnoea or improve its symptoms.
The muscles in your throat are relaxed when you drink alcohol, which might make obstructive sleep apnea even worse. Moreover, people who consume alcohol regularly also tend to increase their body weight. You need to stop consuming alcohol to prevent and avoid complications caused due to sleep apnea.
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Change Your Sleeping Position
You should change your sleeping position and try sleeping on your side. This may help prevent snoring and ensure that your airway does not get blocked. In addition, you should ensure that your pillow does not put stress or strain on your neck. This will help provide you with good sleep, which people with sleep apnoea usually lack. You should remember not to sleep on your stomach or back as it can worsen the symptoms of sleep apnoea. When one sleeps on their back, there is a greater chance that their tongue and soft palate will obstruct their airway, leading to snoring and sleep apnoea.
Sleep apnoea is one of the common reasons for bad sleep in people, and some may not even realise that they are dealing with it. It can result in daytime sleepiness, difficulty concentrating, irritation, affect your memory, and may even lead to depression. You should consult with your doctor if you are suffering from this health condition to avoid health complications later. Moreover, you should also practise good sleeping habits like having a fixed sleep schedule, reducing screen time before bed, and avoiding daytime naps.