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Do throat exercises cure sleep apnea?
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DocWils Offline

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Post: #11
RE: Do throat exercises cure sleep apnea?
I have be resisting weighing in because there have been excellent answers here, but I must correct DreamDiver's post - regular playing means twice to three times a week once the therapy has proven effective - fifteen minutes to an hour will suffice, depending on how well your throat holds tone - everybody is different in that regard. Getting to that point, however,will require more regular practice, although the research subjects here did not do daily practise.

If you currently have a high AHI, it can help lower it - if your AHI is relatively low, it can bring it to the the sub-clinical point, but it is not a cure. Nor is weight loss, even if weight gain is the primary motivator for the OSA. Once the damage is done, it is done, and while the condition will be improved by weight loss, sometimes radically, it has shown to be cleared up in weight related OSA only if the OSA was not severe and near the sub-clinical level already (I recall that the cut off for this was an AHI of 9 - above that and weight loss will better your AHI but will not completely clear it up). Weight loss and throat toning together will have better results than either apart for weight related OSA. But a 100% cure does not exist, only the hope that it will work for you. For most, some form of assist will still be necessary.

My standard advice is the same I would give anyone, OSA or not - eat right, exercise regularly, keep your weight down, and smile. None of which I do. I also add don't smoke, don't drink and don't do drugs. I do follow that bit, at least......
08-16-2013 12:03 PM
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Sleepster Offline
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Post: #12
RE: Do throat exercises cure sleep apnea?
I would add the following. If you have OSA and a doctor recommends CPAP therapy, go that route. You can always stop using the CPAP machine later if you lose a lot of weight, become an accomplished didgeridoo player, have surgery, or use a dental appliance.

Every night you sleep with untreated OSA is a night you spend increasing the risk of cardiovascular disease, lowering the quality of your life, and reducing the likelihood of having or making meaningful relationships with others.

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INFORMATION ON APNEA BOARD FORUMS OR ON APNEABOARD.COM SHOULD NOT BE CONSIDERED AS MEDICAL ADVICE. ALWAYS SEEK THE ADVICE OF A PHYSICIAN BEFORE SEEKING TREATMENT FOR MEDICAL CONDITIONS, INCLUDING SLEEP APNEA. INFORMATION POSTED ON THE APNEA BOARD WEB SITE AND FORUMS ARE PERSONAL OPINION ONLY AND NOT NECESSARILY A STATEMENT OF FACT.
08-16-2013 03:06 PM
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RonWessels Offline

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Post: #13
RE: Do throat exercises cure sleep apnea?
Actually, I think you will find that a lot of us here are drug users. I personally take a pill in the evening and a different pill in the morning for high blood pressure, take yet another pill in the morning for stomach acid control, and take yet another pill (this one an OTC NSAID) for the arthritis in my ankle.

I also do enjoy the occasional beer or two with/after dinner, and have been known to start camp fires at a friend's cottage that initially don't burn completely cleanly (ie. smoke).

Or did you mean something else?
08-16-2013 03:06 PM
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Paptillian Offline

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Post: #14
RE: Do throat exercises cure sleep apnea?
I have to agree-- the docs make sure that we don't stay "drug free." In fact I get new "candies" almost every time I walk into the office. Laugh-a-lot
08-16-2013 03:54 PM
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DocWils Offline

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Post: #15
RE: Do throat exercises cure sleep apnea?
I did not mean those sort of drugs, lads. However, there are also prescriptive drugs that can make apnoea worse, and lots of drugs we take to save and prolong our lives that in fact do immense damage to us, just the damage is so slow and long term that the calculation is that something else will kill us first, hopefully extreme old age....
08-17-2013 03:24 AM
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Phadrius Offline

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Post: #16
RE: Do throat exercises cure sleep apnea?
From my own experience, I have found that there exists a correlation between weight gain/obesity and sleep apnea. My apnea became worse the last few years as I gained weight. Early this year, I went on a strict diet, joined the gym, and lost 8kg. Even though it's only a small weight loss, I found myself sleeping better (not cured though). Did a stress and heart exam, and was told by the doctor to lose weight or risk a short life span etc. So, the bottom line is, if I lose 30kg+, I may also lose the sleep apnea, or at least reduce the severity to next to nothing. I am now back to the gym, and dieting, and intend to lose 30kg. Will post once I lose the weight and let you all know whether my sleep apnea disappeared with the weight loss or not. I am determined to lose the weight.
(This post was last modified: 08-17-2013 03:42 AM by Phadrius.)
08-17-2013 03:40 AM
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Sleepster Offline
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Post: #17
RE: Do throat exercises cure sleep apnea?
There's no doubt there's a correlation between obesity and OSA. Age and gender are factors, too. The most commonly-diagnosed patient is a man in his fifties who has tended to gain weight over the years. That's me!

Now, I don't know if the weight gain caused the OSA or the other way around. I think they feed off each other. We don't sleep well because we have OSA. So we eat more because we need the energy. The added weight makes the OSA worse, and so it becomes a vicious cycle.

Some of us just have the type of anatomy that's prone to OSA. As we get older it gets worse.

OSA is not just something you either have or don't have. There are degrees of severity of OSA just as their are degrees of severity of obesity. We measure the severity of the OSA with a AHI, we measure the severity of obesity with a scale, and we measure the severity of age with a calendar.

You'll never get your weight down to zero, you'll never get your age back to zero, and you'll never get your AHI down to zero.

For the vast majority of people CPAP therapy is the most effective and least complicated treatment for OSA. For many people it's as simple as taking the CPAP machine home and plugging it in like you would a toaster. It gets complicated for a lot of people when adaptation becomes difficult. In those cases it's crucial that the patient has the support provided by places like Apnea Board. Knowledge and empowerment are crucial to the adaptation process. Once adapted, though, using a CPAP machine requires no more effort than the operation of a toaster.

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INFORMATION ON APNEA BOARD FORUMS OR ON APNEABOARD.COM SHOULD NOT BE CONSIDERED AS MEDICAL ADVICE. ALWAYS SEEK THE ADVICE OF A PHYSICIAN BEFORE SEEKING TREATMENT FOR MEDICAL CONDITIONS, INCLUDING SLEEP APNEA. INFORMATION POSTED ON THE APNEA BOARD WEB SITE AND FORUMS ARE PERSONAL OPINION ONLY AND NOT NECESSARILY A STATEMENT OF FACT.
08-17-2013 08:41 AM
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Phadrius Offline

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Post: #18
RE: Do throat exercises cure sleep apnea?
No one doubts the effectiveness and necessity of CPAP treatment. All I am saying is, weight loss can be achieved with a good diet and exercise, if you're getting good sleep and using CPAP. So, simply resigning your self to the inevitablility of your condition is akin to giving up on hope and a better life. However, if you're one of those people who has given up on losing weight and have resigned yourself to the CPAP, then it is your choice and all the best with it.
08-18-2013 04:37 AM
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me50 Offline

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Post: #19
RE: Do throat exercises cure sleep apnea?
(08-15-2013 02:49 PM)RonWessels Wrote:  Excess weight, particularly for men, does tend to mean that the various tissues in and around the throat tend to be somewhat more prone to flabbiness and therefore airway obstruction. There is a definite correlation between levels of excess weight and required treatment pressure for an individual (across individuals, not so much). And, in rare cases, weight loss will reduce the obstructive apnea to a point where CPAP treatment is no longer required. Similarly, there is a definite correlation between didgeridoo use and required treatment pressure.

However, there is currently no reliable cure for obstructive sleep apnea. Realistically, you should resign yourself to the fact that, with current technology, you are probably going to be on CPAP for the rest of your life. It sucks, but there it is.

My sister has a friend that has sleep apnea and had surgery to try and "cure" sleep apnea. During surgery, her esophagus was nicked and she nearly died. For me, going under the knife for something like this, when there are other alternatives, isn't something I am willing to do.

Have a great day everyone. And thanks for all your help.
08-18-2013 06:30 AM
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Sleepster Offline
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Post: #20
RE: Do throat exercises cure sleep apnea?
(08-18-2013 04:37 AM)Phadrius Wrote:  No one doubts the effectiveness and necessity of CPAP treatment.

Many people do. There are lots of CPAP machines gathering dust in closets.

Quote:All I am saying is, weight loss can be achieved with a good diet and exercise, if you're getting good sleep and using CPAP. So, simply resigning your self to the inevitablility of your condition is akin to giving up on hope and a better life. However, if you're one of those people who has given up on losing weight and have resigned yourself to the CPAP, then it is your choice and all the best with it.

You kinda lost me here. Are you saying that if I resign myself to needing CPAP therapy for the rest of my life I've given up on losing weight?!

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INFORMATION ON APNEA BOARD FORUMS OR ON APNEABOARD.COM SHOULD NOT BE CONSIDERED AS MEDICAL ADVICE. ALWAYS SEEK THE ADVICE OF A PHYSICIAN BEFORE SEEKING TREATMENT FOR MEDICAL CONDITIONS, INCLUDING SLEEP APNEA. INFORMATION POSTED ON THE APNEA BOARD WEB SITE AND FORUMS ARE PERSONAL OPINION ONLY AND NOT NECESSARILY A STATEMENT OF FACT.
08-18-2013 08:46 AM
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