How to Sleep with Sleep Apnea: Find the Best Position for a Restful Night

Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder that affects millions of people around the world. It is caused by blockages in the airway, which can lead to breathing difficulties during sleep. This condition can impact your overall health and quality of life if left untreated. One way to manage this condition is by adjusting your sleeping position.

In this blog post, we will explore various positions you can try to help you get better sleep with sleep apnea.

What Is Sleep Apnea?

Before we dive into sleeping positions for sleep apnea, let’s briefly define what this disorder is all about. Sleep apnea occurs when an individual stops breathing repeatedly throughout their sleep due to a blocked or narrowed airway.

The two most common types of sleep apnea are Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) and Central Sleep Apnea (CSA). OSA happens when the muscles at the back of your throat fail to keep the airway open while CSA occurs when there’s no proper communication between your brain and muscles responsible for controlling breathing.

It’s important that you seek medical advice if you suspect that you have any type of sleep-related disorder such as obstructive or central sleep apneas symptoms like loud snoring, gasping for breath during bedtime hours, daytime fatigue/sleepiness even after getting enough rest through night-time snoozing sessions.

How Does Sleeping Position Affect Sleep Apnoea?

One factor that contributes significantly to how well someone sleeps with any form of sleeping disorders generally includes one’s preferred sleeping position. Sleeping on one’s back tends to worsen OSA as gravity makes it easier for tongue and other soft tissues in mouth area fall backward blocking airflow passages down from nose past vocal cords hence leading deeper episodes snoring sounds from lungs pushing against closed-off upper respiratory tract causing brief periods oxygen deprivation waking up person time-to-time affected by these moments without realizing they did wake up intermittently from deep sleep.

Position 1: Sleeping on your side

Sleeping on your side is an effective way to manage sleep apnea as it promotes better breathing. In this position, the tongue and soft tissues won’t fall back into the airway, making it easier for you to breathe freely throughout the night. Experts recommend sleeping with a pillow between your legs or hugging one if you’re used to that since they tend to help align your spine giving relief from pressure points in body’s joints while improving circulation comfort levels through increased support given by mattresses below them reduce chances pushing upon these areas rendering less likely chance of interfering breathing passages being obstructed during slumber time.

Position 2: Sleeping upright

Another effective position for managing sleep apnea is sleeping upright. This means that you elevate the head of your bed by around six inches using pillows or other props such as a wedge pillow meant for acid reflux sufferers which can also work well in this case scenario too. The upright position helps prevent gravity from causing blockages in the airway, which may lead to snoring and interrupted breathing patterns during sleep.

Position 3: Sleeping on Your Stomach

While not recommended often due – stomach sleeper’s necks bent awkwardly at right angles placing undue stress spinal vertebrae over long periods time could be detrimental health wise cumulative effects can cause more significant problems later especially when dealing with underlying medical issues like OSA and CSA where already restricted airflow passages might get worsened potentially increasing respiratory distress caused by these conditions plus putting extra strain onto themselves leading poor quality restful slumber sessions hampering overall wellbeing overtime if left unattended too frequently it should not go unnoticed either hence needs proper medical attention monitored closely based upon individual needs of each person suffering such ailments alike.

Tips For Better Sleep With Sleep Apnea

Apart from adjusting your sleeping position, there are other things you can do to manage sleep apnea. Here are some tips:

– Lose weight: Being overweight or obese worsens sleep apnea. Losing weight through a healthy diet and exercise can help reduce symptoms.

– Avoid alcohol and sedatives: These substances relax the muscles in your airway, making it more difficult for you to breathe.

– Quit smoking: Smoking is linked with increased inflammation in the airway, which can worsen sleep apnea symptoms.

– Try breathing exercises: Some people find relief from their sleep apnea by practicing breathing exercises that strengthen the muscles around their airway.


Sleeping positions play an important role in managing sleep apnea. Sleeping on your side or upright may improve airflow and prevent blockages in the airway during sleep while avoiding lying flat on one’s back leads to worsening episodes of OSA causing snoring sounds due gravity pulling soft tissues downwardly making breathing harder than usual; therefore, corrective actions must be taken promptly if one suspects suffering from any form of Sleep Apneas disorders based upon proper medical consultation diagnosis tailored specific individual needs since everyone’s situation varies per person so does what works best for them too when looking at different remedial measures available out there today without necessarily having resorting invasive surgeries prescribed treatments alone but also complemented natural home remedies such as losing excess weight plus abstaining harmful substances activities like smoking drinking excessively including adopting healthier lifestyle choices overall aiding better management prognosis enhanced quality restful slumber sessions day-to-day life moving forward.