Treatment Options for Sleep Apnea

If you have recently been diagnosed with sleep apnea, chances are you are looking for treatment options that will help you to better your health and to get a good night's sleep. Treatment for sleep apnea depends on the individual, and you may have to try a few methods before you find something that works for you. Here are some options that you may want to explore with your doctor's supervision.

One of the things that can worsen sleep apnea and other sleep disorders is the position that you sleep in. If you tend to sleep on your back, your apnea could worsen, since it is easier for your tongue to fall over the airway in your mouth, which will make it difficult to breathe, and it is easier for the tonsils to relax themselves and block the airway as well. You can keep yourself from remaining asleep on your back by pinning a small ball, such as a tennis ball to the back of your pajamas, so that you feel it each time you roll over onto your back.

Losing weight is another treatment for sleep apnea you may want to consider.

Extra fat around the neck area may be making it harder to breathe, which means obstructions in the airway are more likely to take place on a more regular basis. If your sleep apnea cause is not particularly severe, making sure that you lose weight could even keep your condition from worsening. Weight loss will require certain changes in your diet, as well as a regular exercise program--your doctor will most likely have great suggestions to help you stay on track.

You should also be careful about taking certain medications if you know that you have sleep apnea.

Avoid drinking alcohol, since this substance affects the central nervous system of the body, and can relax the airway muscles.

Treatment for sleep apnea can also include staying away from medicines like painkillers and muscle relaxers. These substances make the whole body relax, including the muscles that control your airways, so if you must take these medications, try to take them during the day, and as far away from bedtime as possible.

You can also get a CPAP mask from your doctor in order to help with sleep apnea. CPAP or Continuous Positive Airway Pressure blows air from the room you are in through your airway at a high pressure, so that the throat can stay open. The pressure is set according the severity of your treatment for sleep apnea, and this has been the most effective method for sleep apnea for most folks.