Kishore has been experiencing disruptions in his sleep, characterized by sudden gasping, loud snoring, and feelings of drowsiness upon waking. He is also noted to be overweight and has a history of alcohol consumption. This has led to elevated blood pressure levels, feelings of stress and irritability, and a decreased motivation to work.
The root cause of Kishore’s sleep disturbance is sleep apnea- sleep disorder, a medical condition that negatively affects his sleep quality and overall well-being.
What is Sleep Apnea?
Sleep Apnea is a Sleep Disorder in which the individual’s breathing patterns are disrupted, characterized by repeated instances of stopped and restarted breathing. This can lead to loud snoring, fatigue, and an overall feeling of unrest after a night’s sleep.
What are the types of sleep apnea?
There are three types of sleep apnea:
- Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA): This is the most common form of sleep apnea and occurs when the muscles in the back of the throat fail to keep the airway open, despite the effort to breathe.
- Central Sleep Apnea (CSA): This type of sleep apnea occurs when the brain fails to signal the muscles to breathe. There is no actual obstruction in the airway, CSA is different from OSA.
- Complex Sleep Apnea Syndrome: This is a combination of OSA and CSA, and occurs when an individual experiences both types of sleep apnea.
What are the common symptoms of sleep apnea?
Waking up suddenly after gasping or choking
- Fatigue or sleepiness during the day
- Restlessness while sleeping or regular night awakenings
- Experiencing a Dry mouth or Sore throat while waking up
- Trouble concentrating, forgetfulness, or crankiness
- Depression or anxiety
Who can get Sleep disorder or Sleep apnea?
This condition can affect anyone, but certain factors make you more at risk:
- Being overweight
- A large neck circumference could make your airways more narrow
- A narrowed airway that you inherited or developed from large tonsils or adenoids
- Men are 2 to 3 times more likely to have sleep apnea than women.
- Older age
- A family history of sleep apnea
- Use of alcohol, sedatives, or tranquilizers
- Nasal congestion
- Medical conditions such as type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, congestive heart failure, PCOS, hormonal disorders, Parkinson’s disease, prior stroke, or chronic lung diseases like asthma
What happens if your sleep apnea goes untreated?
Sleep apnea if untreated can lead to serious medical conditions and complications like- Daytime fatigue can cause you to fall asleep at work and remain cranky, more likely to lead to workplace accidents.
- High blood pressure or heart problems
- Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus- Sleep apnea puts you at a higher risk for insulin resistance.
- Metabolic syndrome leads to a higher risk of heart disorders.
- Liver complications- sleep apnea can cause abnormal results on liver function tests and scarring of the liver
How can we overcome Ayurvedic Treatment for Sleep Apnea?
Sleep is given utmost importance in Ayurveda. Sleep is responsible for the healthy state of mind and body. Sleep disorders are always related to systemic illnesses.
Sleep apnea is quite common in conditions of obesity, the treatment ultimately aims at addressing the root cause. Ayurvedic Treatment for Weight Loss (Obesity) can be efficiently managed through panchakarma procedures. Ayurvedic Treatment for Sleep Apnea includes Panchakarma which is a specialty of Ayurveda having preventive, promotive, and curative actions and indicated in a wide range of disease conditions including obesity. Ayurvedic medicine for Sleep Disorders includes herbs like Ashwagandha, Shankapushpi, Sarpagandha, Nirgundi, Jatmamsi, etc. Some of the Various ayurvedic treatments for Sleep Apnea that benefit from overcoming sleep disorder are Shirodhara, Shiro-abhyanga, Karna Purana, Nasya, etc.
- Udsadana and Udvartan (Rubbing medicated paste & powder) can act on superficial fat deposition and lipid peroxidation.
- Nasal instillation of drops followed by medicated steam inhalation can relieve nasal blockade. Further, symptoms of sleep apnea can be reduced by certain single herbal drugs and formulations
- Ashwagandha(Withania somnifera) is an excellent adaptogen that calms the nerves, mitigates stress, and guarantees smooth transmission of signals all along the body, to help breathe deeply. Additionally, it contains thephytonutrient triethylene glycol, which promotes uninterrupted sleep at night and effectively fights sleep apnea.
- A potent herb that boosts brain power, shankapushpi(Convovulous pluricaulis) is very useful in soothing pounding headaches and agitated moods that are often experienced in instances of sleep apnea.
- Bestowed With its sedative properties, sarpagandha (Rauwolfia serpentina) is a tried-and-true medication to improve the quality and quantity of sleep as well as treat heart-related issues that arise with Sleep apnea.
- Jatamansi (Nardostachys jatamansi) has a remarkable potential for promoting deep sleep at night because of the wealth of plant-based biochemicals that the herb contains.
- Nirgundi(Vitex negundo) is a versatile herb containing a powerful essential oil that greatly improves breathing processes. Before going to bed, add just 2 drops of nirgundi oil to your nose and breathe in the energizing aroma to stop frequent snoring and promote uninterrupted sleep cycles.
- Some Ayurvedic medicine for sleep is sarpagandha vati, saraswatarishta, Manasa mitra vati, and shathayu products like Novacalm, which can be taken after consulting an Ayurveda doctor.
Yoga and Pranayama for sleep apnea:
For Many Years, One of the most effective treatments for sleep apnea has been yoga. It benefits people in many different situations. Yoga’s breathing practices develop and tone the muscles in the upper airway, which can help reduce symptoms. Some of the yogic postures beneficial are simhasana(lion pose), bhujangaasana(Cobra pose), kapaalabaathi and brahmari pranayama.
Sleep is an integral part of life. Sleep is a powerful stress reliever. It enhances decision-making and judgement, modulates mood, and enhances concentration. The sleeping disorder known as sleep apnea can have serious health consequences. It is one of those disorders that can worsen if not addressed. Disturbance in Sleep can disturb your circadian rhythm. Ayurvedic treatment for Sleep Apnea can be consistently dealt with through combined protocols of therapies, panchakarma, and medicines. Snoring is buying other’s sleep, therefore eliminating the factors hampering the sleep of your loved ones and you. Shathayu Ayurveda Yoga Retreat is one of the Best Ayurveda Resort in India which offers holistic Ayurvedic treatments for Sleep Apnea, focusing on balancing the body and mind to promote restful sleep. These treatments aim to address the root causes of sleep apnea and improve overall well-being.