How Can Sleep Apnea be Treated?

How Can Sleep Apnea be Treated?

According to the CDC, untreated sleep apnea will increase your risk of many different health complications including type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, depression, and cardiovascular disease. Even though this disorder can be devastating, treatments are more effective than ever. If you have recently been diagnosed with sleep apnea, then you need to spend a little bit of time researching all of your treatment options.

Lifestyle Changes

Obesity is a major risk factor for sleep apnea, and that is why many specialists suggest that patients start by making some lifestyle changes. In addition to exercising for at least 150 minutes a week, those who have sleep apnea should also alter their diet. Patients who are having a tough time losing weight should consider speaking with a registered dietitian. One of these specialists can help you come up with an effective meal plan to safely lose weight and keep the pounds off.

CPAP Machines

Continuous positive airway pressure machines are one of the most common treatments for obstructive sleep apnea. These devices consist of a small motorized box, a tube known as a cannula, and a soft mask that fits over the nose and mouth. When the machine is turned on, it will gently blow air down the individual’s throat to keep their airways open. Getting used to sleeping with a CPAP mask can take some time, but these machines are extremely effective when used regularly.

Dental Devices

Those who have mild to moderate sleep apnea might benefit from a night time dental device. There are many types of dental devices for sleep apnea, and each is designed to address a different obstruction in the mouth. Some mouthguards simply push the lower jaw forward while others keep the tongue in place. Smile on Chicago, a dentist offering sleep apnea treatment suggests, “In order to be as comfortable and effective as possible, these devices must be made custom for each patient.” You will need to schedule an appointment with your dentist or orthodontist to be fitted for your mouthguard.

Surgery

If these other treatments fail, then the patient might need to consider their surgical options. Most sleep apnea procedures are carried out to remove excess soft tissue in the mouth. The doctor might also suggest the removal of the patient’s tonsils and adenoids to make more room in the throat. These procedures have very high success rates, but they should only be thought of as a last resort. The vast majority of patients can control their sleep apnea through lifestyle changes and custom dental devices.