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Sleep Apnea & Lifestyle Changes - Santa Clara, CA
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The Power of Lifestyle Changes for Sleep Apnea

Professional sleep apnea treatment is the best way to improve your symptoms. However, simple lifestyle changes can also enhance your quality of sleep. At Bay Area Sleep Solutions & Pain Center, our experienced Santa Clara, CA sleep specialist, Dr. Pooja Goel can recommend certain changes to your daily life to help you achieve the sleep you deserve. Read our guide to learn about what habits you can build to improve your sleep.

What Factors Can Impact Your Sleep Apnea Symptoms?

There are a variety of factors that can cause you to develop sleep apnea. While genetics and your neck circumference play a role, so does your daily lifestyle. If you have a poor diet or deal with excess weight, this can further exasperate your sleep quality. In many cases, sleep apnea isn’t solved with just treatment. Sometimes, it can also help to develop healthy habits to drastically improve your sleep as well as your quality of life.

Dr. Goel’s Recommended Lifestyle Changes

Dr. Goel will recommend certain lifestyle changes based on the results of your sleep study as well as your unique lifestyle needs. Some of these changes can include the following:

Maintaining a Healthy Weight

One of the primary contributors to sleep apnea is excess weight. This causes fatty tissues to develop in your airway and around your neck, making it more difficult to breathe throughout the night. However, reaching and maintaining a healthy weight through diet and exercise can help improve your symptoms as well as give you more energy during the day.

Eating a Well-Balanced Diet

Part of having a healthy weight is a balanced diet. The good news is that you don’t need to completely reinvent what you eat in order to regulate your diet. Simply make healthy alternatives or practice portion control. Making your own meals can also help you become more conscious of your nutrition. Plus, it’s a great way to practice your cooking skills in the kitchen.

Regular Exercise

Exercise offers a wealth of benefits for your health such as improving blood flow and boosting your metabolism. Even walking for just 30 minutes each day can help improve your sleep apnea in the long run. Try to get your body moving in fun ways like taking a dance class or going jogging while listening to music. It can also help with stress and boost your happiness.

Limiting Alcohol & Caffeine Consumption

Consuming an excessive amount of alcohol or caffeine can disrupt your breathing pattern as well as increase your risk of snoring. If you suffer from sleep apnea, Dr. Goel recommends limiting your consumption of these drinks. Try a healthy morning alternative like drinking herbal tea and reserve drinking alcohol for birthdays, holidays, or other special occasions.

Improving Sleep Hygiene

Sometimes, your sleep hygiene can also make your sleep apnea worse. This can include anything from your sleep schedule to your posture while you lay in bed. Be sure to sleep at the same time every night to regulate your circadian rhythm. Dr. Goel can also help you with finding the best position for you to have while trying to fall asleep.

Nothing Can Replace Professional Treatment

While making certain lifestyle choices can help improve your sleep apnea, these are most effective when combined with professional treatment. While most people think the only way to treat sleep apnea is with CPAP, Dr. Goel offers oral appliance therapy as a non-intrusive solution that’s just as effective. This option uses a custom-made nighttime mouthguard that adjusts the position of your jaw as you sleep to help reduce snoring and other symptoms.

Frequently Asked Questions

What lifestyle changes can fix snoring?

This depends on the causes of your sleep apnea and snoring symptoms. The most common solution is weight loss if you struggle with obesity, poor eating habits, or a large neck. Your sleep dentist will be able to give you a more accurate layout of what changes you may need to make based on the results of your sleep study to better tackle your snoring symptoms.

Can sleep apnea go away without treatment?

No! It’s important to undergo a sleep study if you believe that you may be struggling with sleep apnea to receive effective treatment. Leaving your sleep apnea symptoms untreated can cause you to develop more serious issues later on such as hypertension, heart disease, diabetes, and more. By seeking professional care from a sleep specialist or dentist, you can get back to getting the restful and quality sleep you deserve.

Does weight loss help improve sleep apnea?

Yes! If you struggle with obesity, developing healthy habits to improve and maintain a healthy weight can greatly relieve you of your sleep apnea symptoms. Not only that, it can also improve your quality of life by giving you more energy during the day, lowering your risk of serious health complications, and improving your physical and mental health.

Will I need to change my entire life?

Not at all! If you need to make certain changes for sleep apnea, you won’t have to suddenly become a regular at the gym or become your own expert nutritionist. These changes will come over time until you gradually start to acclimate to them. Some examples include going walking for 30 minutes, practicing portion control, buying a sleep posture pillow, and more. Your specialist will recommend these changes based on your current lifestyle.

Quality Lifestyle Changes to Enhance Your Sleep

Combining professional treatment with simple lifestyle changes is the best way to tackle symptoms associated with sleep apnea. At Bay Area Sleep Solutions & Pain Center, Dr. Pooja Goel can recommend simple, meaningful changes you can make in your life to help you get the sleep you deserve. Call our Santa Clara, CA practice today by calling (408) 549-1602 or filling out our online contact form. We serve patients in Campbell, North San Jose, Fruitdale, and Robertsville, CA.