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Natural Remedies for OSA?
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Tommy C Offline

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Post: #1
Natural Remedies for OSA?
We all know that most OSA is caused by the tongue/throat muscles relaxing and dropping back during sleep to block the windpipe.

I wonder, how did the human body get to this point? Did evolution design us to sleep on our sides? Have we lost muscle strength in our tongue/throat muscles that we once had when we ate foods requiring more aggressive chewing in the cave days? Do apes sleep on their sides and have stronger tongue muscles due to their lifestyles?

I am reading about tongue and throat exercises that supposedly help improve muscles and reduce OSA. Must try this.

In addition, I am using double stacked athletic mouthguards ($5) that open the mouth slightly and push my lower jaw 1/2" forward during sleep. As a test, without the mouthguard, I lean my head back and feel the air blocked. With it in, the air flows freely. A protruding jaw definately opens my windpipe opening more. Some OSA corrective surgery does this jaw adjustment.

Just using these two techniques (side sleeping and the mouthguard) has improved my sleep markedly as I wait for the sleep study in a few weeks.

So, where did we go wrong in our modern lifestyle and evolution? Are we doing or not doing things, detrimental to our design, that is causing our OSA problems?

Tom
(This post was last modified: 07-05-2012 10:51 PM by Tommy C.)
07-05-2012 10:30 PM
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zonk Offline

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Post: #2
RE: Natural Remedies for OSA?
(07-05-2012 10:30 PM)Tommy C Wrote:  I wonder, how did the human body get to this point?
In conversation with Professor Colin Sullivan (inventor of CPAP); Snoring kills

Why do we do it? And how did humans survive out there in the forest, advertising their presence to all rampaging carnivores that they were there, asleep, ready to be devoured. Hello Robyn Williams with In Conversation. And today's chat is about more than snoring. It's about apnoea, those moments when breathing actually stops, damaging our physiology in the process.

Robyn Williams: And that question of snoring-and then when you stop breathing which is what apnoea is-was that thought to be just a normal process, that's the way you slept at night?

Colin Sullivan: Absolutely, I think snoring at least was believed to be essentially normal, people had written, and talked, and joked about snoring forever, and because it's so common people assume that it is normal. However, the stopping breathing, which again would have been and was reported, was thought—I would think that people would have seen their partners or father etc. doing that and thought it was part of ageing etc. So I think that's probably one of the reasons why people didn't take it seriously. I think the other reason is that because all of the events occur during sleep, certainly at that time in the 1970s the medical approach to sleep was the patients are all right and you can leave them alone.

Robyn Williams: Well, look, this has puzzled me for a long time because if you go back further than 10,000 years, during 100,000 years when we were wandering around the plains or the forest—and it struck me about babies as well, if you've got screaming babies in the forest and you're surrounded by sabre tooth tigers or whatever, you're not going to last. Similarly if all the men are snoring around the campfire then you're advertising your presence and it's a risky business. Is it likely that snoring is a modern thing and we didn't do it way back as primitives?

Colin Sullivan: No I don't, I think it's occurred as part of the evolution if you like of our upper airway and it's probably in part a consequence of our developing speech capacity-because the upper airways are actually a muscular tube which depends on muscle tone to stay open. So I don't think it's a modern phenomenon. Certainly there are references to snoring and obstruction in ancient literature, so I don't think it's recent at all. Some people in a semi-humorous way have suggested that snoring was protective, in the sense that if you're in a cave and making this incredible noise it sounds more like a lion than a human.

Robyn Williams: Keeps the beasts away.

Colin Sullivan: Yes, that's right. But no, I don't think so. I think certainly in our time one of the major risk factors for developing snoring and obstruction is course obesity but it's not the root cause. You have to have a small airway to begin with and it also involves the loss of muscle tone in sleep. But in modern times of course it's part of the obesity epidemic that we are facing.
http://www.apneaboard.com/forums/Thread-...ring-kills
07-05-2012 11:52 PM
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PaulaO2 Offline
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Post: #3
RE: Natural Remedies for OSA?
Humans needed a wide airway to keep running, to do physical labor, which was necessary for survival. Then we became urbanized and true hard labor and running became less important as we shifted away from labor jobs to mental jobs. Yes, there's still folks who work their arses off physically, but not many are truly doing it to literally survive. Neither were their parents nor their grandparents.

Perhaps, that airway began closing genetically. Survival of the fittest no longer depended on our lung capacity so that fell to the wayside.

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07-06-2012 12:14 AM
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zimlich Offline

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Post: #4
RE: Natural Remedies for OSA?
Positional treatments
Many people benefit from sleeping at a 30 degree elevation of the upper body[35] or higher, as if in a recliner. Doing so helps prevent the gravitational collapse of the airway. Lateral positions (sleeping on a side), as opposed to supine positions (sleeping on the back), are also recommended as a treatment for sleep apnea,[36][37][38] largely because the gravitational component is smaller than in the lateral position. A 30 degree elevation of the upper body can be achieved by sleeping in a recliner, an adjustable bed, or a bed wedge placed under the mattress. This approach can easily be used in combination with other treatments and may be particularly effective in very obese people.

From Wickipedia. Good luck.
07-07-2012 08:03 AM
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archangle Offline
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Post: #5
RE: Natural Remedies for OSA?
The traditional and natural treatment for apnea is burial.

Get the free SleepyHead software here.
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07-07-2012 10:06 AM
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mjbearit Offline

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Post: #6
RE: Natural Remedies for OSA?
(07-07-2012 10:06 AM)archangle Wrote:  The traditional and natural treatment for apnea is burial.

Dielaughing

As always, YMMV! You do not have to agree or disagree, I am not a professional so my mental meanderings are simply recollections of things from my own life.

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07-07-2012 11:13 AM
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Tommy C Offline

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Post: #7
RE: Natural Remedies for OSA?
Interesting comments, thanks.

Yes, the side sleeping and elevated upper half certainly makes a difference. In fact, my sleeping has improved so much in the last few days that I am now dreaming all night, sleeping more soundly and my negative sleep symptoms have disppeared! I think the homemade mouth piece made the biggest difference. I wonder now if the CPAP (when prescribed) will help further or be more trouble than its improvement.

I get the same amount of hours sleep as before but now it seems more quality sleep.

I wonder if I should take my upcoming sleep test on my back without the mouthpiece (bad sleep) or do it with the new and improved techniques. Or maybe do 1/2 the session in each mode so they can map out the problem better. I'm sure they will tell me.

T
(This post was last modified: 07-07-2012 11:50 AM by Tommy C.)
07-07-2012 11:49 AM
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Sleepster Offline
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Post: #8
RE: Natural Remedies for OSA?
(07-05-2012 10:30 PM)Tommy C Wrote:  I wonder, how did the human body get to this point? Did evolution design us to sleep on our sides? Have we lost muscle strength in our tongue/throat muscles that we once had when we ate foods requiring more aggressive chewing in the cave days?

In ancient times people with OSA lived miserable sleep-deprived lives and suffered from cognitive dysfuntions and EDS that could easily have led to their demise. In the society we now live in we see an increase in longevity and a proliferation of machines that sucessfully treat OSA. These are the only reasons we see more people diagnosed with OSA.

Quote:Just using these two techniques (side sleeping and the mouthguard) has improved my sleep markedly as I wait for the sleep study in a few weeks.

That's great. There are other treatments for OSA besides CPAP therapy. CPAP therapy has by far the most successful track record for the treatment of OSA. The other methods may work for you, but for most people they don't.

Quote:So, where did we go wrong in our modern lifestyle and evolution? Are we doing or not doing things, detrimental to our design, that is causing our OSA problems?

We haven't gone wrong. Just the opposite. We are successfully treating a malady that used to go untreated. CPAP therapy is improving the well-being of millions of people who would otherwise be leading miserable sleep-deprived lives and dying early of cardiovascular disease.

We have evolved to the point where we have been able to successfully discover and treat OSA. That's a miracle! I'm thankful that I live in a time when this is possible. I think about my father and the fact that a lot of his health problems may have been due to untreated OSA. I think about all the health problems I've experienced in my life that are now abating only because eight months ago, at the age of 56, I was fortunate enough to be able to start CPAP therapy.

The human body is not some perfectly-designed entity that's being mistreated by modern lifestyles. There are good things and bad things about being human. OSA is one of the bad things. CPAP therapy is one of the good things.

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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.
(This post was last modified: 07-07-2012 11:56 AM by Sleepster.)
07-07-2012 11:55 AM
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Tommy C Offline

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Post: #9
RE: Natural Remedies for OSA?
Excellent post, Sleepster!

You mentioned the cardiovascular damage that can be inflicted by OSA.

A dull heart pain in the morning is what started my quest to determine what was going on. A series of cardio tests came up negative but the dull pain persisted. Now that I'm sleeping better, the pain has disappeared and I feel quite good again.

My question is: To what extent can damage to the heart and cardiovascular support system be naturally repaired once the OSA is successfully treated? I imagine it is a subjective thing and there are certain points of no return if the damage has been extensive.

I asked my doctor this question and he responded "YES!! It certainly can be reversed!" But that's all he said.

It may be too early in our research of OSA/CSA and it's treatment, but any ideas about recovery and repair of this damage? ie, Can a heart grow back healthy tissue where damaged parts were - or will the scar tissue always be there and create problems?

Tom
(This post was last modified: 07-07-2012 12:20 PM by Tommy C.)
07-07-2012 12:15 PM
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Sleepster Offline
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Post: #10
RE: Natural Remedies for OSA?
High blood pressure (hypertension) is dramatically reversed by CPAP therapy. There's a lot of stress placed on your heart by OSA. Once you treat OSA you reduce most of that stress. It's hard to say how much damage we caused in the past, or how much we continue to damage the cardiovascular system by continuing to be alive. The thing is, it doesn't matter. We can't go back in time, all we can do is live in the present and try to reduce any further damage we might cause in the future.

These are the kinds of mental riddles that used to drive me crazy when I was in the throes of OSA. OSA has a huge impact on our mental health as well as our physical health.

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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.
07-07-2012 01:45 PM
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