Find out the facts about sleep apnea and also the effective natural sleep apnea remedies that will do wonders for this respiratory system condition!
What is Sleep Apnea?
This respiratory system condition is a sleep disorder that occurs when the breathing of the person pauses continually during his sleep. One or more breaths could be missed during the entire sleeping cycle. It is said that this condition stop breathing while sleeping which could be quite scary for the people sleeping next to the person with this condition. This condition needs further investigation because it is clinically significant and could be a symptom of another medical condition.
There are three types and they are:
- Obstructive – the most common type and occurs when the soft tissues in the back of the person’s throat relax while sleeping. This could cause a blockage in the airways and cause loud snoring.
- Central – not as common type since it involves the central nervous system of a person instead of the airway being obstructed. This happens when the person’s brain doesn’t signal the muscles that control the breathing. People with this type seldom snore.
- Complex – this type of is a combination of the two mentioned types above.
Since this condition affects the way people breathe when they’re sleeping, the question comes into mind “can you die from it?” The answer to that is: it won’t quickly result to death of a person but the side effects and symptoms may be fatal if left untreated. Researchers have said that yearly 1,400 people suffer from fatalities during car accidents because of the driver being too sleepy and drowsy while driving. Also, if left untreated it can cause other major health issues. Some of these health issues are high blood pressure, diabetes mellitus, problems with memory, sleep apnea and obesity, heart diseases, strokes, headaches and impotence.
What are the signs and symptoms?
People with this condition may be completely unaware of having it which is very common. Other people may notice this problem instead because it occurs while the person is asleep.
- Loud and chronic snoring
- Choking and snorting during sleep
- Long pauses in breathing
- Dry throat on awakening
- Sudden waking up and gasping for a breath
- Waking up repeatedly all throughout the sleep cycle
- Morning headaches
- Fatigue during the day due to lack of sleep
Another question people have on their minds is “can this medical condition cause seizures?” The answer to that is sleep apnea and seizures sometimes are connected to one another. Since lack of sleep can occur when a person has this condition, the constant lack of sleep can decrease an epileptic person’s capabilities for fighting off the occurrence of a seizure. Medications taken to treat seizures can also affect respiratory function and relax the airway passages.
What are the risk factors?
- Over the age of 40 years old
- Race: African American, Hispanic, Pacific Islander
- Family history
- Neck size above 17 inches (men) and 16 inches (women)
- Cigarette smoking
- Heavy drinking
- Obstruction of the nasal passages
- Large tongue or tonsils
- Cranial structure which includes a small airway
The question comes into mind “how do I know I have sleep apnea?”
Here are ways to diagnose this condition?
A sleep study (“polysomnogram”) – this study is conducted by technicians at a sleep center. This is a method that record 11 sets of data collected while the patient falls asleep, during sleep and once the person wakes up. Equipment that is generally used during a polysomnogram are the following: EEG (“electroencephalogram”) measures and records brain waves, EMG (“electromyogram”) tracks movement of muscles, EOG (“electro-oculogram”) tracks eye movements to help classify what stage of sleep person is in and EKG (“electrocardiogram”) tracks the activity of the heart.
How do you know if it’s just snoring or if it’s sleep apnea?
Do keep in mind that not everyone that snores has it and not everyone who has sleep apnea snores. The way to really tell if the person is suffering from this medical condition interfers with the quality of sleep of a person while normal snoring doesn’t. People who just snore are least likely to suffer from fatigue and sleepiness during the day.
Here is a list of natural sleep apnea remedies:
- Valerian root. This is one of the best sleep apnea natural treatments for this medical condition. This herb is used because it has calming and sedating properties. It is useful for insomnia and chronic sleep disorders. The best way is to combine this with lemon balm. It will take a few weeks for maximum effects. Make sure not to use this with conjunction with prescription sleep aids.
- Passionflower. An effective way to cure sleep apnea. This plant is used to commonly improve sleep conditions. It is known to be a mild hypnotic and sedative that calm the nervous system and promote relaxation and sleep. This herb could be combined with other plants to increase effectiveness. This herb isn’t recommended to patients with depression because it could make the condition more severe. how?
- St John’s Wort. One of the effective natural remedies especially when combined with Valerian. This herb promotes sleep in people with sleep disorders and depression. It could be taken in capsule, pill form, teabags, liquid extracts and tinctures that could be bought in herbal stores. It might take at least 10 days before it really takes effect. Don’t take this herb if you are already taking antidepressants and antibiotics. Consult your doctor first.
- Omega-3 Fatty Acid. This essential fatty acid has many advantages to our bodies. You can take this in capsule form and it could help out in treating this condition.
- Primrose, chamomile and lavender oil aromatherapy. These essential oils are effective in aiding in sleep and said to be effective natural sleep apnea remedies. You can buy these oils in herbal stores and help promote relaxation and sleep.
- Walnuts. Walnuts are known to help in breathing. Try adding this to your daily diet. You can add seeds to milk and consume this before bedtime.
- Garlic cloves. This helps treat it by relieving enlarged tonsils. It also helps to alleviate inflammation in the respiratory system. Crush a garlic clove and create a paste with it. Mix it in with warm water and consume before bedtime. One of the effective natural remedies for asthma.
- Indian gooseberry. One of the effective natural sleep apnea remedies. This helps enhance breathing during sleep. Steep some pieces in hot water and wait till it boils. Strain and drink it when it cools down. Try grinding the leaves of this herb into a powder and consome it with warm water.
- Yoga. Since yoga focuses on controlling breathing therapeutically, it could cure sleep apnea (at its mildest stage) since it benefits in opening up the airway passages.
- Lose Weight. Obesity is a contributing risk factor and it is recommended to talk to your doctor about the proper weight for your body type. Even a small amount of weightless can open up the throat and improve sleep apnea symptoms.
These natural help for sleep apnea work wonders for patients with this medical condition. Make sure to have this ailment properly diagnosed by your healthcare professional to get the proper treatment. If your doctor approves and says that natural sleep apnea remedies could help out with your condition then go right on ahead and try these natural treatments out.
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