Throat Exercises for Sleep Apnea: Add To Your Effort to Lose Weight

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You have neglected snoring for a while and now the same seemingly harmless but noisy sleep disorder has worsened into a more serious condition called sleep apnea, caused by blockages in a narrowed respiratory tract.

If you have been a habitual snorer, chances are that you are obese too. While obesity invites a host of health problems, snoring, subsequently developing into sleep apnea is one of the most common outcomes of being overweight. Treatment of sleep apnea invariably starts with the doctor recommending quick weight loss.

This may come as a surprise for many, but being obese does not only mean putting on weight around your waist, thighs, etc. Extra fat tissues also invade organs directly involved with breathing helping in the blockage of the respiratory tract. These include, throat, jaw, neck and soft palate. Therefore, along with physical work outs like swimming, jogging, aerobics, etc., you also need to focus on toning and strengthening the muscles of these organs. For helping you achieve this objective, there is no better alternative than sleep apnea exercises.

The best part about any kind of sleep apnea exercise is that it can be done in conjunction with your regular physical workouts. There are plenty of sleep apnea exercises, many of which are easily downloadable from the internet. Each of these exercises focus on a separate organ. Your doctor is the best judge to decide which of these exercises are suitable for you depending on the nature and location of the obstruction in the respiratory tract.

Of all the different types of sleep apnea exercises, throat exercises for sleep apnea have the most number of followers since these exercises especially focus on throat muscles to reduce the accumulated fat obstructing normal breathing and help in a significant reduction in the severity of the condition.

Throat exercises for sleep apnea: what are they all about?

Essentially, the primary focus of sleep apnea throat exercises is working out the soft palate, palatopharyngeal arch, tongue and nasopharynx. For example, the sleep apnea exercises that involves singing, acts on the lax muscles in the upper region of the throat. This automatically tells you that these types of sleep apnea exercises would work only when you need therapy for toning the lax muscles.

Throat exercises for sleep apnea that involve singing are done by singing to different tunes and sounds. Like any other form of exercising, even sleep apnea exercises should be done regularly to get the best results.

Throat exercises for sleep apnea also involve yawning repeatedly. When you purposefully yawn several times at a stretch, the relevant muscles get the necessary exercise by stretching too.

There is an important aspect of sleep apnea exercises that include throat exercises for sleep apnea too. Do not expect miraculous results. Things do not change or improve overnight. You might need several months of labor to see visible improvement of your snoring problem.

Throat exercises for sleep apnea: introduction to some popular types

As mentioned, there is plenty of variety in sleep apnea exercises. Here is a brief overview of some of the throat exercises for sleep apnea but they may not be effective if the condition is severe:

  • A very popular and effective sleep apnea throat exercise is to play the didgeridoo. This activity is relevant to patients of moderate sleep apnea and trains the upper airway muscles. Regular didgeridoo can significantly reduce daytime sleepiness.
  • Repeating vowels for about three minutes. Stress on the tone of each vowel as this can effectively stretch the throat muscles.
  • Tongue pushing. Do this by pushing the tongue to the back of the front set of teeth, rolling it with pressure to the back of the mouth. Do this for about three minutes every day.
  • Purse your lips tightly and try to hold it this way for about 30 seconds.
  • Contracting the muscles at the back of the throat for about 30 seconds, the sound you make could resemble a croaking frog but never mind – they are for a good cause!

The most important benefits of throat exercises for sleep apnea are that they strengthen throat muscles; builds muscles in the airway and prevents any further constriction. The composite effect of the exercises can be experienced with the reduction in the severity of sleep apnea symptoms.