Useful Tips That Every Person Struggling With Sleep Apnea Must Know

Useful Tips That Every Person Struggling With Sleep Apnea Must Know | HealthSoul

Sleep apnea is a serious sleep disorder that affects an estimated 22 million Americans. Sleep apnea is when a person’s breathing is interrupted during sleep. This is bad news because it means the brain and the rest of the body may not be getting enough oxygen. Handling sleep apnea can be overwhelming with things like cleaning your CPA equipment.

If you’re struggling with sleep apnea, here are useful tips.

Sleep On Your Side

Sleep on your side


Not all cases of sleep apnea are severe enough to require the use of a machine or surgery. If your sleep apnea is only mild try sleeping on your side. Sleeping on your side with your back mostly straight, also known as the “log” position, can help cut down on sleep apnea. Sleeping on your side opens up your airways. There’s the added benefit of reduced neck and back pain since your spine stays aligned.

While you can switch sides because sleeping on either of your sides is good for you, sleeping on your left side is thought to have the most benefits to your overall health. In that position, your organs are freer to get rid of toxins while you sleep.

Here’s how to do it right:

  • Lie down on a medium-firm mattress and place a firm pillow underneath your head.
  • Lie down on your left side first. Your ears should be in line with your shoulders. Don’t tuck your chin into your chest by keeping your head down.
  • Keep your arms and hands below your face and neck, preferably parallel to the sides.
  • Put a firm pillow between your knees especially if you have low back pain. This will better align your spine.
  • Slightly lift your knees toward your chest so that there’s reduced pressure on your back.

Try Insomnia Treatments

Try Insomnia Treatments

According to specialists sleep apnea is linked to insomnia. Insomnia is another sleeping disorder in which one has trouble falling asleep or staying asleep. You may combat sleep apnea by trying insomnia treatment techniques like:

  • Limiting your caffeine intake
  • Avoiding screens when it’s time for bed. This includes putting your phone away when you’re in bed
  • Avoiding heavy or spicy meals late at night
  • Limiting your alcohol consumption

How To Clean Your CPAP Machine

The most common type of sleep apnea is Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). This type of sleep apnea causes pauses in your breathing, often because your throat or airways briefly collapse or something temporarily blocks them. Doctors often prescribe a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine. It sends a steady flow of oxygen into your nose and mouth as you sleep that keeps your airways open and helps you breathe normally.

The CPAP machine needs to be cleaned regularly. Here are the steps of cleaning cpap machines:

  • Clean the CPAP tubing, nasal mask, and headgear in a sink filled with warm water and a mild antibacterial dish detergent.
  • Swirl the parts around for about five minutes and rinse well.
  • Hang the tubing over a shower rod, on a towel rack, or in the laundry room so that all the water drips out.
  • The mask and headgear can be air-dried on a towel or hung on a hook or hanger.
  • Then, wipe down your CPAP machine with a damp cloth towel. The towel shouldn’t be too damp or wet because water could get into the machine and damage it.
  • Clean the filter by removing it and rinsing it in warm tap water by squeezing it under the water to get out dust. Then blot it down with a towel.
  • Clean your humidifier every week by emptying any remaining water and then washing the water chamber in the sink with warm soapy water. Rinse it and let it air-dry before placing it back into the CPAP unit.
  • Every other week you should disinfect the humidifier. Do this by soaking it in a solution of one part vinegar to five parts water for 30 minutes.

Note that you must use mild, non-perfumed soap to wash your CPAP machine. Also, use only distilled water to prevent mineral deposits that can build up and cause damage to your machine.

Stay Hydrated

If you have sleep apnea, you’re at risk of becoming dehydrated at night. Research conducted explains that this is because your body loses fluid when you open your mouth to breathe, thus accelerating the dehydration process.

Further studies show that sleeping six hours at night is associated with a higher risk of dehydration. A hormone called vasopressin, which makes sure our bodies don’t lose too much water while we sleep, is released in increasing amounts in the later stage of the sleep cycle, a stage you don’t get to when you have sleep apnea.

Make sure to drink copious amounts of water throughout the day.

With the right techniques and medical help, there’s no reason why sleep apnea should affect your sleep any longer.