If you have sleep apnea, you already know how tiring and scary it can be. Not only does the condition mean that you stop breathing at different points during the night, it can also lead to serious health conditions such as heart disease. Here are some things you can do to better cope and improve your life when you have sleep apnea.
Eat a Healthy Diet
You may not make an immediate connection between what you eat and your inability to sleep at night, but making sure that your diet is healthy is important when you have sleep apnea. Sleep deprivation can affect ghrelin and leptin, two hormones that affect how hungry you feel throughout the day. You might be more likely to choose junk foods or foods high in calories and fats as a result of not sleeping well. In turn, you might gain weight.
If you start picking up pounds based on your bad diet choices, that can make your apnea even worse. Weight gain can make your breathing airway more likely to collapse as you sleep, due to bulked up tissues caused by your extra weight. As a result, your breathing may stop even more often during the night. That is why it is vital that you are aware of the choices you make when you eat something. Try to stick with vegetables, lean meats, fruit and whole wheat grains.
Wear Your CPAP Mask
You might think that making lifestyle changes means that you can stop using your CPAP mask and machine altogether. However, a good CPAP mask is still one of the best ways to treat your sleep apnea. Many people who use a CPAP machine report feeling better during the day, which can help improve the quality of your life. You might one day be able to stop using the machine, but right now it may very well help you to feel more rested and better able to handle your day.
If you are having trouble sleeping through the night with your CPAP machine, try changing up the CPAP supplies you have. For example, you might consider adding a humidifier to your machine so that your nasal passages do not dry out while you wear your mask. You might also think about getting a mask cushion that is made of gel and silicone instead of only silicone, which may make the mask more comfortable to wear.
Use the tips in this article to help you to cope with your sleep apnea. Talk to your doctor about more suggestions that may help you.