What are the prevention measures for obstructive sleep apnea (OSA)?

Updated: Sep 15, 2020
  • Author: Himanshu Wickramasinghe, MD, MBBS; Chief Editor: Zab Mosenifar, MD, FACP, FCCP  more...
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Patients should restrict their body positions during sleep. SDB is worse in the supine position, and some patients have apnea only in this position. Preventing the patient from assuming the supine position by using devices such as a snore ball (eg, a tennis ball sewn onto the back of the patient’s pajamas) or a gravity-activated position monitor may be useful. However, these devices are cumbersome and appear to benefit only those patients with mild OSA.

Patients with marked obesity may benefit from sleeping in an upright position. Additionally, the FDA has approved a specially designed pillow (PillowPositive) for the treatment of snoring and mild OSA, which maintains the patient’s head and neck position during sleep to optimize UA patency.

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