Managing Your Sleep Apnea & Weight
The Link Between Sleep Apnea & Weight
Did you know that your weight and sleep go hand in hand with each other? Being overweight can lead to sleep apnea and cause you to gain weight. It can be a constant battle for many of our patients, but losing excess weight can be life-changing.
At DentaCare Dental, Dr. Hobbs understands how sleep apnea affects our patients both physically and mentally. Dr. Hobbs has years of experience and provides effective treatments to patients in the Longview area. Read on to understand how sleep apnea is linked to weight.
Obesity and Your Sleep
Obesity is a common risk factor for sleep apnea as it makes it more difficult for the sufferer to breathe properly at night and negatively impacts their sleep quality. Both weight issues and sleep apnea can also increase your risk for other health problems such as heart disease, high blood pressure, or type 2 diabetes.
In a study, researchers found that sleep problems can also cause weight gain. This can make maintaining a healthy body weight even more challenging and lead to the risk of becoming overweight more quickly.
Dedication to Weight Loss
Being overweight and wanting to lose extra pounds to improve your overall health and sleep is a long-term commitment. Unfortunately, drastic weight change won’t happen in a day, so being patient will play a key role in your dedication to weight loss.
Weight loss has been proven to help relieve symptoms of sleep apnea, and it can also reduce the risk of other health problems. By finding a steady workout routine that suits you and also trying out healthy foods that fit your lifestyle, you’ll gradually be able to notice a change in your weight.
Find the Best Workout for You
It may come as a surprise to many of our patients, but working out can actually be fun and enjoyable if you discover the right activity that won’t make you feel uncomfortable or bored. Exercising is a great way to get back into shape, revitalize your energy, and renew your sleep.
Once you find a type of workout that you can enjoy, you’ll be able to continue with it and soon see the results you desire. It’s important to know that your workout options aren’t limited to the gym. Try out some of these effective exercises and see which one you love:
- Jogging outdoors
Try Out Healthy Diets
“Lifestyle changes and weight loss are cornerstones of OSA therapy,” stated researchers in a study about diet, exercise, and managing sleep apnea. In many medical complications, obesity is one of the key contributors. If this is the case, doctors will generally recommend regular exercise and a well-balanced diet.
This is the same case when treating sleep apnea. Making lifestyle changes such as following a meal plan, like the Mediterranean diet, and exercising are two easy ways you can lose weight and reduce your sleep apnea symptoms. The Mediterranean diet is also great for the heart and consists of all the foods we enjoy.
When finding a meal plan to stick with, it’s important to eat in a healthy way that you enjoy and won’t give up on. The majority of people who begin a diet will often stop and return to their old eating habits because they feel like they’re forcing themselves to eat nutritious foods.
Instead, you can simply monitor the things you eat, reduce your caloric intake, and keep up with your regular exercise routines. This will ensure you’re focusing on a healthy diet most suitable for you and you’ll soon notice you’ve achieved your goals.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can sleep apnea cause weight gain?
Yes, sleep apnea can lead to poor sleep quality, resulting in weight gain. Furthermore having a larger neck circumference or a smaller airway due to anatomical development can cause breathing problems during sleep. The link between sleep apnea and weight is a vicious cycle. Dr. Hobbs highly recommends doing active and healthy lifestyle changes to ensure sleep apnea doesn’t worsen. Maintaining a healthy body weight won’t guarantee that you don’t develop sleep apnea, but it can help manage symptoms.
Can people who aren’t overweight suffer from sleep apnea?
Yes. Many other factors besides weight can influence sleep apnea. While being overweight is the most common underlying cause, people of all sizes and ages can develop sleep apnea. That’s why it’s important to track any sleep apnea symptoms you’re experiencing and undergo a sleep study if you think you have a sleep disorder.
Can weight loss cure sleep apnea?
While losing weight can greatly improve sleep apnea symptoms, most cases aren’t permanently curable. However, weight loss has been shown to drastically reduce symptoms in patients suffering from sleep apnea.
Sleep apnea causes patients to stop breathing during sleep due to an obstructed airway. In certain cases, the weight of the neck narrows and blocks the airway. As a result, losing weight can help clear your airway and improve symptoms.
Does sleep apnea go away?
Unfortunately, sleep apnea very rarely doesn’t go away without effective treatment and lifestyle changes. In milder cases of sleep apnea, Dr. Hobbs recommends making healthy and active lifestyle changes to help alleviate sleep apnea symptoms. Dr. Hobbs will recommend a customized oral appliance to reduce snoring and manage sleep apnea symptoms for those with stronger cases.
Tackle Sleep Apnea With Dr. Hobbs
Being cautious and aware of your weight can be a huge benefit for both your health and your sleep disorder. Discovering the connection between the two may be intimidating initially, but there are many ways to help combat both. Learn more about our sleep apnea treatments with Dr. Hobbs by scheduling an appointment at our Longview office.
Call us at (903) 686-9076 or get in touch through our online contact form. Dr. Hobbs proudly offers his years of expertise to patients in the Longview community as well as the surrounding areas including Marshall, Gladewater, Lakeport, and Kilgore, TX.