Sleep Disorders

Buteyko Method Works for Snoring and Sleep Apnoea

"Last year (September 2007) I was diagnosed by a sleep study test as having severe sleep apnoea. My GP and the Sleep specialist kept insisting that I trial one of those CPAP machines. I could not imagine anything worse than going to sleep with that. I did not trial a machine.

I did the Buteyko course in October 2007 and I did a refresher in March 2008. My GP insisted that I have another sleep study done,which I did at the end of October this year (2008). (GP didn't believe that Buteyko would work). I have just received the results. I no longer have severe sleep apnoea and I have no arterial oxygen desaturation. I do not need a machine. Thank you so much."

Maureen 

A poor sleep pattern affects your whole life and those around you because sleep is so important to good health and wellbeing. Using the Buteyko Method provides a natural way of improving sleep patterns by reducing the incidence of snoring, sleep apnoea, insomnia, vivid dreams and nightmares. Buteyko enables you to sleep soundly, wake refreshed so that you start the day with vigour, better concentration and more energy.

Hyperventilation

Breathing increases and decreases in line with changes in metabolism, and so when you exercise your breathing increases, becoming more noisy and forceful. When your metabolism is low, such as when you sleep, the breathing is quiet and gentle. To make the snoring sound, you need to breathe far more forcefully than is normal during sleep; in fact snoring is more like the type a person usually does while exercising rather than sleeping. This means that snoring is the sound your body makes when you breathe more air than you need during sleep.

People who hyperventilate will be familiar with some of the following indicators of poor sleep:

  • Repeatedly waking during the night
  • Waking up tired instead of refreshed
  • Excessive daytime fatigue
  • Waking up with aching muscles or headaches
  • Vivid dreams and nightmares
  • Night sweats
  • Blocked or runny nose, especially on waking
  • Snoring
  • Waking to urinate, instead of sleeping right through the night
  • Abnormal pauses in the breathing, or sleep apnoea

Snoring, or breathing heavily drags in lots of cold, dry air laden with dust, pollen and other pollutants. Breathing like this tends to cool down, dry out, and irritate delicate airway tissue, which responds by swelling and increasing mucus production. The swelling and mucus narrow the airways slightly, making it necessary to breathe with more force than usual, compounding the problem.

When you are asleep, airways are more floppy than when you are awake and so they are more likely to vibrate, making the snoring sound if you breathe too forcefully. They are also more prone to collapsing when the upper airways are narrowed because the forceful breathing creates a stronger vacuum in the lungs than gentle breathing does. This greater vacuum allows ordinary atmospheric air pressure to suck your tongue back and to collapse the relaxed, narrowed airway when you inhale forcefully.

the sleep - hyperventilation cycle

The root cause of your abnormal breathing pattern needs to be addressed so that you no longer breathe forcefully while you are asleep. By breathing correctly your upper airway will no longer be abnormally narrow, allowing the free flow of air without any devices or machines. Buteyko is a wonderful tool for recalibrating the automatic breathing pattern to operate at the correct level for any activity, including sleep.

In a Buteyko Works course no one is instructed to discard their CPAP machine, or oral devices because having severe snoring or sleep apnoea are serious conditions. Instead you continue to use these treatments alongside the Buteyko method until you no longer require them. Class participants are encouraged to have another sleep study after taking their Buteyko course to ensure their safety and good health.

"Last year (September 2007) I was diagnosed by a sleep study test as having severe sleep apnoea. My GP and the Sleep specialist kept insisting that I trial one of those CPAP machines. I could not imagine anything worse than going to sleep with that. I did not trial a machine.

I did the Buteyko course in October 2007 and I did a refresher in March 2008. My GP insisted that I have another sleep study done, which I did at the end of October this year (2008). (GP didn't believe that Buteyko would work). I have just received the results. I no longer have severe sleep apnoea and I have no arterial oxygen desaturation. I do not need a machine. Thank you so much." Maureen

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