Sleep apnea is a condition distinguished by irregular breathing during sleep. Many of those who have it will stop breathing while sleeping, which results in gasping for air and waking up at specific points throughout the night. Sometimes, you might not even know that you have it until someone points it out.
But leaving it unchecked means that it will disrupt your sleeping patterns, cause excessive daytime sleepiness, and increase your risk for heart disease. Those who suffer from it will often visit an oral surgeon to get major invasive surgery to fix it, or they’ll purchase breathing devices that they wear at night.
Those are perhaps the most effective ways to treat it, but these methods can be quite expensive. Thankfully, there are effective alternative treatments if you’re on a tight budget. Here are some of the best natural home remedies you can try:
Keep the extra weight off
Being overweight causes your nasal passages to narrow and puts extra pressure on your respiratory tract, thus obstructing your airways and making it difficult to breathe. This makes it more likely for you to stop breathing suddenly. Regularly exercising and following a healthy diet will help you lose weight and keep that extra weight off. This will ease some major symptoms of sleep apnea.
Put a humidifier in your room
The dry air that circulates in your home can irritate your lungs and airways, thus making it harder for you to breathe. You can remedy this by putting a humidifier in your room, or wherever you spend most of your time. This adds moisture in the air, which will, in turn, relieve the congestion in your sinuses and open up your airways.
You can get the full benefits of your humidifier with the use of aromatherapy oils. Certain oils like eucalyptus, peppermint, pine, lavender, and thyme put you in a state of calm and help facilitate a good sleep. Just be sure to clean your humidifier often since it can get moldy quite quickly, which is not good for your lungs.
Try positional therapy
Positional therapy is the treatment of sleep apnea by way of correcting your sleep position. Sleep apnea symptoms can be exacerbated when you sleep on your back, also known as the supine position. What positional therapy does is keep you from sleeping on your back through the use of various devices ranging from stacked pillows, adjustable beds, wedges, and bumper belts. These can help you sleep on your side to reduce sleep apnea symptoms.
Perform regular throat and breathing exercises
Throat and breathing exercises can help strengthen your lungs and throat muscles to prevent it from collapsing while you’re asleep. Some common exercises include blowing a balloon up with deep breaths, gargling with water for several minutes, singing, and playing wind instruments.
Give up smoking and drinking
Smoking can cause fluid retention and inflammation in the airways, while alcohol relaxes the throat muscles. Both of these can exacerbate snoring and sleep apnea symptoms. Giving them up will not only lessen the severity of your symptoms but also improve your overall health.
Sleep apnea might cause discomfort, particularly when it comes to getting a good night’s rest, but these alternative treatment options can help you reduce these disruptive symptoms to help you get tons of shut-eye.