Can sleep apnea be cured?

by Greg Buckingham

Can sleep apnea be cured? I am 27 years of age and my ex partners have all told me I stop breathing when I sleep and it scares them.

I've been told this since I was seventeen and haven't really discussed it with anyone till know as I can relate to some of the side affects of it.

I have smoked since I was seventeen and wonder if that is the reason for this I have been thinking of giving up and know I think I have my reason to so tomorrow I will stop.


Sleep apnea can be cured only with weight loss, if the cause is, of course, obesity. Losing weight has cured many overweight people of this condition.

In general, sleep apnea is treated (not cured!) with a lot of treatments, so you don't need to panic.

Remember that sleep apnea will worsen if you don't start a treatment. And you will need the treatment for the rest of your life.

Just keep in mind that obesity is not the only cause of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). Nor even the most common cause of OSA. One needs to consider that there is the formation and size of the mouth, jaw, throat, muscle tone, medications, other health conditions.

However, you didn't tell me if you snore in sleep or not. This is important, because there is another type of sleep apnea, named central sleep apnea, where the patient stop breathing in sleep because the respiratory center from the brain stops working during sleep.

If you have central sleep apnea, only a sleep specialist can help you.

So, the first step in treating your sleep problem is to speak with your doctor, ask to take a sleep test, and then follow the doctor's advice according to your sleep results.

If you snore (or a mild to moderate case of obstructive sleep apnea), you can treat your sleep problem at home with a bumper belt or antisnore shirt.

However, you should know that if you have a severe case of sleep apnea, CPAP machine is the key to a better sleep.

You can learn more about sleep apnea treatments here.

Keep in mind that if you wake up feeling better after the bumper belt or CPAP treatment, you still have sleep apnea. So, if you think you are cured and you can now smoke more, drinking coffee, or have an unhealthy are wrong.

It's like in need to change your life. Quitting smoking will be the first step.

Regarding smoking and sleep apnea...Read this page about causes of sleep apnea, and you will see that smoking is one of the cause for sleep apnea.

Here are some Sleep Hygiene Measures to help your body with sleep apnea, before going to the doctor:

  • Keep a regular sleep-wake schedule, including weekends.

  • Avoid caffeinated beverages after lunch.

  • Avoid smoking, especially in the evening.

  • Avoid alcohol near bedtime.

  • Restrict sleep to amount needed to feel rested.

  • Do not go to bed hungry.

  • Adjust bedroom environment.

  • Do not engage in planning the next day’s activities at bedtime.

  • Exercise regularly for about 20 to 30 minutes, preferably 4 to 5 hours before bedtime and not immediately before bedtime.

I hope it helps. Don't be afraid to comment back.

Remy Thierry
Founder of Sleep Apnea Guide

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Feb 19, 2013
Insurance Coverage for MMA surgery
by: Anonymous

Be sure to check with your insurance carrier. I tried to get this Covered under Coventry HMO/Open Access of KS and they have specific language excluding this type of surgery or any related to under or overbite, whether it is for a medical problem like severe OSA or not.

I have 84 episodes per hour and desat into the 70% range and complications of: cardiac arrythmias, diabetes, hypertenstion and obesity in all likelyhood related to my OSA- and this did not make a difference. Now, since I never thought to look in the exclusions, I will also probably have to pay for the services I got, major xrays, etc., that I had from the Oral surgery consult, plus the fee for his consult.

I sure hope National Healthcare in 2014 does a much better job for people like me.

Oct 31, 2013
OSA Causes
by: Charles

I was diagnosed with sleep apnea. The doctor was of the opinion that the cause was due to my being overweight (no argument with that...6' 4", 296 pounds). I responded very well to the CPAP treatment.

After about a year I went in to the VA Medical Center for an unrelated ear surgery. They ordered a chest x-ray prior to the procedure. Then they ordered an MRI. It turned out that I had a large (110 g) goiter growing down from my thyroid into my chest. It was crushing my windpipe (diameter reduced >75%) and pressing on my aorta. Life threatening is what the doctors said. After they removed the thyroid (precancerous) and the goiter I could breathe again.

However I still use the CPAP. I'm still not 100%, but my pulmonologist says that if I keep losing the weight (down to less than 270 stabile) I may be able to discontinue using the CPAP. I don't know if I can...I sleep so well with it.

Moderate daily exercise makes a big difference, too.

May 27, 2017
Q&A re: recommendations
by: Anonymous

I work a rotating shift (7 days each with days off between). I do try to get 6-8 hours sleep regardless each day. I am overweight. I am working on that. Per your list I need to stop planning tomorrow before bedtime. According to my doctor I may not get tomorrow without CPAP! The prognosis is scary. It seems to me that the remedy is workable. Life ends no doubt, but why get scared to death?

Oct 26, 2017
Almost gone
by: Anonymous

I've been using my machine for just a wk & my numbers have drastically gone down! Just 2 episodes a night now can I stop usin ths machine & be alright or am I stuck on it for the rest of my life?

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