• Reviewed on 12/12
    By Dr. Harrington

Obstructive Sleep Apnea: Treatment


There are several options for managing sleep apnea. They include:


Maintaining An Ideal Weight

People who are overweight are more likely to develop sleep apnea. Therefore, maintaining an ideal weight is important in managing sleep apnea. Before starting a diet or exercise program, talk with your doctor about your plan to make sure it is safe.

 

Sleeping Position

Some people breathe better and snore less loudly when sleeping on their sides or stomach. There are simple techniques to keep you from sleeping on your back, including sewing a tennis ball to the back of your pajama top, wearing a soft backpack at night, or placing a pillow under your shoulder.

 

Dental Devices

Dental devices are designed to push the jaw forward. Worn at night, they widen the throat and increase the size of the airway. Dental devices may be used for mild and moderate apnea. Learn more.

 

Surgery

Surgery may potentially improve sleep apnea in very specific circumstances. Learn more.

 

CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure)

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More severe cases of sleep apnea may require CPAP. This common and effective treatment provides pressure to the person's airway through a machine that blows air. The airflow from the CPAP machine is delivered through a mask that fits on the face and covers the nose, or the nose and mouth. This air acts as a splint to keep the airway open during sleep, allowing breathing to become more regular. Snoring stops and restful sleep is restored. Learn more about CPAP.

 

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