If you have sleep apnea, you might already know how much this common, but very serious condition can affect your wellbeing. Your physical, mental, and even oral health can suffer when you aren’t regularly getting a full, restorative night’s rest. Sleep apnea affects your ability to breathe easily and take in enough oxygen. Luckily, there are remedies you can try, including CPAP machines, intraoral devices, and alternative therapies. Keep reading to find out how the Buteyko Breathing Method helps sleep apnea.
Sleep Apnea and Breathing
In the 1950s, Dr. Konstantin Buteyko theorized that people who are chronic deep breathers or have accelerated breathing rates were more likely to have other breathing-related issues. He believed that some respiratory conditions, like sleep apnea, can be caused by chronic hyperventilation. Hyperventilation lowers the levels of carbon dioxide available in the blood. This then affects the blood’s pH balance and oxygen levels.
To help correct this, Dr. Buteyko developed an alternative therapy (called the Buteyko Breathing Method) that many patients since have credited with relieving the symptoms of sleep apnea and other conditions, like asthma and airway muscle spasms.
How the Buteyko Breathing Method Helps Sleep Apnea
Through a focus on slow, even nasal respiration and relaxation, this method attempts to “retrain” breathing patterns. It’s believed that doing so helps to optimize and rebalance the CO2 and oxygen levels in the blood, minimizing the symptoms of sleep apnea so that you can breathe more easily at night.
When performing Buteyko Breathing to help with sleep apnea, keep in mind that these breathing exercises shouldn’t replace prescribed medication or professional advice you receive. However, they may help to improve your quality of life.
Buteyko Breathing and Other Sleep Apnea Solutions
In addition to the Buteyko Breathing Method, your dentist may recommend other sleep apnea treatments to minimize snoring and airway blockage. Ask about a sleep apnea assessment and custom-fit oral appliances that reposition the jaw during sleep. This comfortable, non-invasive option also helps you to breathe more easily and get the healthy, necessary rest your body needs.
Contact us to schedule a consultation at My Family Dentistry, where Dr. Mullins can provide you with more information about how the Buteyko Breathing Method helps sleep apnea and other conditions.