Humidifiers vs Sleep Apnea: Do Humidifiers Help With Sleep Apnea?
We all know that exercising, eating healthy and keeping a healthy lifestyle is essential for our life. But we shouldn’t forget that sleep and its quality also has a huge effect on the way we feel. If poor sleep is something that you’re familiar with, then you should know that it affects your productivity, psychological state, and can cause serious problems for your health. So, do humidifiers help with sleep apnea? Let’s figure it out!
What is Sleep Apnea?
According to Rest FAQ, sleep apnea is medically considered to be a sleep disorder in which breathing stops for unusually long pauses and then starts again while you’re asleep. Feeling tired and angry after what seemed to be a good night’s sleep might be the signs of sleep apnea. Our brain and muscles receive the oxygen needed for them to function well. The problem with sleep apnea is that muscles and brain are not able to get the needed amount of oxygen because a person is not breathing properly. The main sleep apnea types are:
1. Obstructive Sleep Apnea
This one is the most common form of sleep apnea. It happens when the throat muscles become relaxed during sleep and that makes it hard for air to get into your body. Tissues in your throat get struck by the airflow, and their vibrations cause something that we know as snoring.
2. Central Sleep Apnea
In this type of apnea, there is instability in the respiratory control center’s work, and because of that, the brain can not give muscles the signal to breathe. So, in this case, it’s not the relaxed muscles that cause air to get stuck in the throat.
Sleep apnea symptoms:
- Loud snoring
- Tiredness even after a good night sleep
- Gasping for air during sleep
- Constant waking up
- Sleepiness during the day
- Attention and concentration problems
Sleep apnea is a serious issue. It requires treatment which can totally fix the quality of your sleep, your performance, and your life. If you don’t take the necessary care of it, you might, later on, have to deal with serious heart issues, excessive sleepiness, and even premature death. Continuous Positive Airways Pressure (CPAP) is usually the treatment that doctors prescribe for people with sleep apnea. In this kind of treatment, doctors give patients special masks with a machine system that helps open the airway in order for it to not cause problems while sleeping. And if you use humidifiers along with CPAP, it helps achieve good results and stick to it.
How Humidifiers Work & Do Humidifiers Help With Sleep Apnea?
Humidifier moisturizes the air by adding water to it. Keeping proper air humidity level prevents the nasal passages from getting dry. The right level of humidity helps the respiratory tract, including your nose and throat, to remain clear, which leads to healthier sleep.
Dry air makes it difficult to breathe normally, especially when you’re asleep. Your body is also likely to inhale a lot of allergens, bacteria, and dust which makes you feel congested and can develop allergies.
And answering the question, do humidifiers help with sleep apnea, we conclude that of course, humidifiers do not cure sleep apnea, but they definitely help make your room more suitable for better sleep and unobstructed breathing.
Hacks on Using Humidifiers
Fresh & clean water only
It isn’t good for your health if there is stale water in your humidifier. Regularly empty the humidifier tank, clean it, dry it and fill it with fresh water so that it doesn’t get contaminated with different allergens and bacteria.
Clean the tank
Read and follow the instructions to see how to clean the tank. Even though the humidifier is great for you, not being properly maintained, it can cause some unpleasant health issues. The moist tank ground can contribute to mold and bacteria development.
Check the tank
If you do not have a humidifier with an automatic shut down system when there’s too little water, make sure you check the tank for water quantity every time you go to bed.
Maintain the right humidity level of the room
Same as a room that is too dry, a too humid room is not good for your health. Too much moisture causes mold and viruses spreading. The perfect humidity level should be 30-50%. You can get a hygrometer to be able to check the humidity level of your rooms.
Warm-mist humidifiers spread moisture using steam from the heated water. Such humidifiers help eliminate the bacteria and also dust from the air by weighing it down. It makes your room well-moist and you will have no breathing problems. Warm-mist humidifiers are usually quieter because they don’t use a fan.
Cool-mist humidifiers absorb the water that is in the tank with the help of special wicks, and then the air spreads through those wicks with the help of a fan, spreading cool and moist air into your room. One of the pros is the ability to maintain not only moisture but also cool air, especially in summer. The sound of the fan though is a con of such humidifiers.
Besides the fact that humidifiers help people deal with sleep apnea, they can also be very useful when you feel congested or like you’re getting sick, and it is very beneficial for your skin, too. It keeps the skin hydrated enough and prevents it from getting dry and flaky, which is a common problem for fall and winter.
Thus humidifiers are very important and play a big part in helping treat sleep apnea. They will not cure it, but you will definitely notice positive dynamics. There are many different humidifier types. You just have to choose one for yourself and enjoy its impact on your health and life.