Lifestyle and Diet Problems as a Possible Influence on Sleep Apnea

Waking Hours Affect Sleeping Hours

Some morning we wake up with no energy; getting out of bed is a chore, and the body just needs to rest. On mornings like these, it’s easy to blame your sleepiness on a poor night of rest. Feeling tired during the day is almost always associated with problems sleeping at night. Problems getting to sleep at night, however, are rarely associated with daytime activities in people with sleeping disorders. Because the signs and symptoms of Sleep Apnea can be difficult identify alone, you can analyze your daily activity to target some possible cause of Insomnia, nightly arousals, and daytime sleepiness in apnea patients.

Unmanaged Weight Problems and Sleep Apnea

Sleep Apnea patients know what it means to worry about weight. Weight problems can cause an individual to develop Sleep Apnea. Congruently, Sleep Apnea can cause a patient to suffer from weight problems. Excess fatty tissue around the throat can cause the tissues to in the upper throat to touch and block the airway. Overweight Sleep Apnea patients who sleep on their backs are at an extremely high risk of experiencing Obstructive Sleep Apnea episodes during the night. Gravity pulls the already saggy tissue down into the upper airway and prevents inspiration from being completed.

Patients with Sleep Apnea are at a higher risk of becoming overweight. Sleep Apnea victims experience compromised hormone production. Sleep interruption and deprivation can affect the body’s production of the growth hormone; growth hormone interruption has devastating effects on young, developing children. The thyroid gland is also largely governed by sleep. The gland controls Calcium regulation and metabolism control. Staying at a regulated, healthy weight is much easier with a good metabolism. Paying close attention to weight fluctuations and issues can help identify and treat the symptoms of Sleep Apnea.

Exercise and Sleep Apnea

It’s pretty common knowledge that exercise is a fundamental part of a healthy life. People with sleeping disorders like Sleep Apnea understand just how important exercise is to getting a healthy night of sleep. Most people today spend the majority of their day sitting down. Whether they sit at a desk all day at work, spend a long commute to work sitting and driving, or they lie in bed and watch TV all day, many Americans spend the better part of a day on their rear ends.

The body runs on natural energy cycles, and obeying the natural energy cycles is vital to getting a sufficient night of sleep. Exercise in the early half of the day gives the body energy during waking hours, and helps the mind wind down for bed in the evening. Working out releases endorphins in the body; they stimulate muscle reaction and keep the mind alert and the body energized by promoting brain activity. Being overly active in the few hours before bedtime can permit sleep from coming easily; the endorphins energize the body and cause restless sleep. Supporting the natural energy cycles in your body means promoting energy stimulation during the day when the heightened energy is necessary, as well as inducing relaxation and release before bedtime.

Drugs and Sleep Apnea

Before you take any medication, make sure that you read the label. If you have multiple health issues, only take medications that will not interfere with the performance of other medical treatments. Your doctor will be able to help you identify these medications.

  • Prescriptions: Many prescription medications can make add to the risk of developing Sleep Apnea. Medications that relax the muscles, such as sedatives and tranquilizers, can cause the muscles in the upper throat and respiratory system to lose their tonal quality. When these muscles become too lax, they compromise the value and integrity of the airway causing apneas to occur. Patients with sleeping disorders, especially respiratory disorders like Sleep Apnea, are strongly discouraged from taking sedative prescriptions that may affect their muscle control. If you have other health issues like asthma, hypertension, depression, ADHD/ADD, hypothyroidism, or heart problems, make sure to discuss the risks and side effects with your doctor. Make sure you discuss the effects on your sleeping disorder.
  • Over-the-Counter: Prescription medications are not the only medications that you have to watch out for when you have sleeping problems; drowsiness can come from a local drug store. Many common over-the-counter medications may cause drowsiness or dizziness. Antihistamines are used for treating colds and allergies and can be obtained at your local grocery store. The sedative results of some over-the-counter cold medicines can cause drowsiness and confusion the morning after consumption. In addition to sedative medications, many common painkillers can affect the quality of your sleep. A large chunk of over-the-counter pain killing medications include caffeine as a main ingredient.
  • Caffeine: Caffeine is one of the most common causes of Insomnia and daytime sleepiness, especially in Sleep Apnea victims. Avoid sodas, coffees, energy drinks, and painkillers like Excedrin and Motrin that contain significant amounts of caffeine.

Sleeping Habits and Sleep Apnea

  • Poor Schedule: Healthy sleeping habits rely on a healthy sleeping schedule. The body doesn’t respond well to inconsistent naps and sleep deprived crashes. Sticking to a strict sleeping schedule will train your body to wind down at certain times of the day. Take a shower or read a book every night before bed. After repeating the actions consistently, the body’s muscle memory will associate those activities with sleep and will subconsciously help you to relax.
  • Night Shift: Patients that work the night shift, or graveyard shift, are more susceptible to developing sleeping disorders. Forcing the body to sleep during the day trains the body to work against its natural rhythm. Sleeping is the most natural thing in the world. Complicating the internal, powerful cycles of the body’s biological clock can ruin the brain and body’s ability to identify with sleeping as an effortless function.
  • Nighttime Activity: Try not to be too active before bed. While exercising in the early afternoon will help you wind down for bed, trying to burin energy before bed by being overtly physical is not healthy. Don’t try to accomplish sleep by wearing the body out, try relaxing the body into a peaceful sleep. Commit to low-energy activities three to four hours before bed to help ensure low levels of energy and stress in the body at bedtime.

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