ALTERNATIVE DOCTOR, LLC
People with sleep apnea stop breathing for short periods of time while they are asleep. You generally don't wake up fully when this happens, but in the morning you don't feel rested, and you feel sleepy during the day. Sleep apnea can be caused by a blocked upper airway (called obstructive apnea), by your brain not signaling your lungs to breathe (central apnea), or by a combination of these two problems.
Signs and Symptoms
The symptoms of sleep apnea include the following.
What Causes It?
Apnea is caused by many physical conditions (such as obesity, or large tonsils and adenoids). The typical person with sleep apnea is an overweight, middle-aged man who has allergies, but apnea can occur at any age and in women as well as men. Sometimes drugs such as alcohol, sleeping pills, or heart medications can trigger apnea. It can also be inherited.
What to Expect at Your Provider's Office
People who have sleep apnea often seek medical help because they feel tired all the time or because their partner complains of loud snoring. Your health care provider will check your weight and blood pressure and ask about allergies. He or she may send you home with a device to check your oxygen levels while you sleep. Your provider may also refer you to a sleep clinic for overnight testing.
Most of the drugs available for sleep apnea have quite serious side effects. Various ventilator devices are available to keep airways open. Tongue- or jaw-retaining devices worn in your mouth at night may be helpful. Surgery is available but does not have a high degree of success. Making the following lifestyle changes helps stop obstructive apnea.
For central apnea:
For obstructive apnea:
Over the Counter
Complementary and Alternative Therapies
Alternative therapies may be useful in treating sleep apnea caused by allergies. Homeopathy and nutrition are most likely to have a positive effect. While many supplements are touted as good for weight loss, none have proven to be as effective as eating less and exercising more.
Some of the most common remedies used for sleep apnea are listed below. Usually, the dose is 12X to 30C every one to four hours until your symptoms get better.
May be helpful in treating sleep apnea.
Sleep apnea is a serious condition that can cause fatal heart problems, so it's crucial to stick with your treatment plan. If you are using a mask and ventilator equipment, be sure to take care of them. Keep in contact with your health care provider or sleep clinic to make sure your treatment is working.
If you are pregnant, you may have nasal congestion that makes you snore in a way that people with apnea do, but this is not apnea. If you have apnea and become pregnant, be sure to continue your treatment so that your condition will not affect your baby.
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