Sleep apnea can be very serious. However, following an effective treatment plan often can improve your quality of life quite a bit.
Treatment can improve your sleep and relieve daytime sleepiness. Treatment also might lower your risk for high blood pressure, heart disease, and other health problems linked to sleep apnea.
Treatment may improve your overall health and happiness as well as your quality of sleep (and possibly your family's quality of sleep).
Follow up with your doctor regularly to make sure your treatment is working. Tell him or her if the treatment is causing bothersome side effects.
Ongoing care is important if you're getting CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) treatment. It may take a while before you adjust to using CPAP.
If you aren't comfortable with your CPAP device, or if it doesn't seem to be working, let your doctor know. You may need to switch to a different device or mask. Or, you may need treatment to relieve CPAP side effects.
Try not to gain weight. Weight gain can worsen sleep apnea and require adjustments to your CPAP device. In contrast, weight loss may relieve your sleep apnea.
Until your sleep apnea is properly treated, know the dangers of driving or operating heavy machinery while sleepy.
If you're having any type of surgery that requires medicine to put you to sleep, let your surgeon and doctors know you have sleep apnea. They might have to take extra steps to make sure your airway stays open during the surgery.
If you're using a mouthpiece to treat your sleep apnea, you may need to have routine checkups with your dentist.
Often, people who have sleep apnea don't know they have it. They're not aware that their breathing stops and starts many times while they're sleeping. Family members or bed partners usually are the first to notice signs of sleep apnea.
Family members can do many things to help a loved one who has sleep apnea.
Clinical trials are research studies that explore whether a medical strategy, treatment, or device is safe and effective for humans. To find clinical trials that are currently underway for Sleep Apnea, visit www.clinicaltrials.gov.
May 21, 2013
Tonsil surgery improves some behaviors in children with sleep apnea syndrome
Children with sleep apnea syndrome who have their tonsils and adenoids removed sleep better, are less restless and impulsive, and report a generally better quality of life, finds a new study funded by the National Institutes of Health. However, the study found cognitive abilities did not improve compared with children who did not have surgery, and researchers say the findings don’t mean surgery is an automatic first choice.
The NHLBI updates Health Topics articles on a biennial cycle based on a thorough review of research findings and new literature. The articles also are updated as needed if important new research is published. The date on each Health Topics article reflects when the content was originally posted or last revised.