Is Sleep Apnea Hereditary? – Genetic Link of Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea is a sleeping disorder in which a person stops breathing for around ten seconds while sleeping. This happens a few times a night and could go on to hundred times a night. It can be deadly as oxygen does not reach the brain causing fatal consequences.

OSA (Obstructive Sleep Apnea) is a type of sleep apnea which has been found to run in families. Hence, there is a strong possibility of sleep apnea being transmitted through genes. The basic reasons linked to OSA are often obesity and weight issues. As it is commonly known that obesity is one of the health conditions which are often genetic, OSA can be said to be directly linked with genetics.

How Can This Issue Be Solved? – Possible Cures

Luckily, OSA can be cured medicinally and naturally as well. There are many treatments, methods and exercises that can help reduce the severity of OSA and in the best case scenario, they can help in eliminating it completely.

  • There are several treatments that can help treat OSA such as CPAP and BiPAP methods. CPAP is a method used by placing a device which creates a mild pressure for the patient which in turn helps in opening the airways. Similarly, the BiPAP method helps in the opening the airways by regulating two levels of pressure. One is the inspiratory pressure which refers to the air which is inhaled; the other is the expiratory pressure which is the air pressure expired out of the lungs.

By regulating a proper amount of pressure for the patient’s airway, OSA can be treated even if a patient receives it genetically.

  • There are surgical procedures also that can help overcome sleep apnea but by undergoing surgeries, a person’s facial framework might change permanently which happens to be the biggest drawback. There is also the fact that no surgical procedure has a hundred percent success rate which means that there is always a dissatisfaction risk if the patient does not feel fully cured. A UPPP surgery involves removal of tissue surrounding the throat.

This is one surgery which is specially performed to treat OSA. It helps clearing the obstructions in a patient’s throat. These obstructions are often hereditary as they mostly involve tissue or muscular growth or other obstructions caused by obesity.

  • There are various exercises that can help reduce the severity of sleep apnea. Tsk- Tsk Sound Exercise, Chewing Gum Exercise and Tongue Rove exercise are to name a few. These exercises involve the movement of tongue and lips in such a way that it helps to open the blocked the airways. This helps the easy movement of air in and out the throat. There is an exercise that involves placing a pencil or a stick between your teeth for thirty seconds before you sleep.

Exercising helps in keeping a control over OSA especially if you suffer from a mild case. These exercises are also helpful for those people who have not been diagnosed with this disorder but it runs in their family. After all, we all know that prevention is better than cure!

Minimizing the Risk – How to Avoid the Risk if Sleep Apnea Runs in the Family!

If sleep apnea, especially OSA runs in the family there are various ways to prevent yourself from suffering from it. These are some of the reliable, tried and tested tips prescribed by doctors.

  • Lose Weight: As mentioned above, it has been observed that overweight people tend to be more at risk of sleep apnea. Hence, it is advised that those people who have a family tendency of sleep apnea keep their weight under control.
  • Quit Smoking: Smoking is a health hazard for sleep apnea patients because it causes the airways to swell up. This results in an obstructed supply of air to the airways and forming a residue of harmful toxin in them as well as the lung. The best way to tackle this issue? Quit Smoking!
  • Avoid Alcohol: Alcohol is another agent which causes damage to the airways. In case you have a family history of sleep apnea, it is best to save yourself some trouble and stay away from alcohol.
  • Stay Fit: Involve exercises in your daily life and try your utmost best to stay away from laziness. This will keep obesity and in turn sleep apnea away from you even if runs in the family.

Even though, Sleep Apnea is hereditary disease but mentioned precautions can help prevent people in transferring the disease into next generation.