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Healthy You

7 Ways to Live the Dream with Sleep Apnea

Wednesday, May 08, 2019 10:19 AM

If your snoring could shake the walls (or so you’re told), you may have sleep apnea. Left untreated, it can lead to high blood pressure, heart disease and even stroke. The good news is that sleep apnea can be treated with medical attention and lifestyle changes. These seven tips could turn you—and your partner’s—sleep apnea nightmare into a dream.

  1. Move it to Lose it. Shedding just 10 percent of your body weight can improve your symptoms.
  2. Say No to Night Caps. Alcohol relaxes the muscles in your throat and makes breathing more difficult during sleep. 
  3. Nix Cigs. Tobacco irritates the airways, which are already under distress with sleep apnea.
  4. Set Yourself up for Sweet Dreams. Stick to a regular bedtime and wake-up schedule, keep your bedroom dark and cool and avoid screen time before turning in.
  5. Safety First. Sleep apnea can cause daytime sleepiness. Avoid driving or operating heavy machinery until your symptoms are well controlled.
  6. Don Your Dream machine. A CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) machine is an effective sleep apnea treatment. It can take some getting used to, but stick with it. Discuss any concerns with your doctor.
  7. Don't Go at it Alone. Visit to learn how NorthShore can help you navigate the challenges of living with sleep apnea.