Sleep apnea is a disorder that affects nighttime breathing and is caused by either a malfunction in the brain that temporarily stops sending signals to the muscles that control breathing, or by an obstruction in the airway. Homeopathic remedies for sleep apnea are largely untested and medically controversial, but current peer-reviewed medical journals, such as the British Medical Journal, have published evidence that homeopathic remedies may have positive effects greater than the placebo effect. As with all homeopathic remedies, it is recommended to seek guidance from a professionally trained homeopath.
Homeopathic remedies for sleep apnea address emotional issues that can lead to congestion. Arsenicum album is often prescribed for individuals who have breathing difficulties at night, according to the Complete Family Guide to Homeopathy, and is considered for people with a fearful, tense and agitated response to illness. Arsenicum album is derived from arsenious oxide and is a deadly poison when consumed in excess. In suggested homeopathic doses, however, arsenicum album is not harmful because it is heavily diluted beyond measurement.
Lachesis is a remedy prescribed for conditions that worsen at night. The University of Maryland Medical Center reports that this compound is designed for people who are typically fearful and anxious, but also prone to jealousy and excessive talking. Lachesis is derived from the venom of a poisonous South American snake. The Center of Education and Development of Clinical Homeopathy notes that lachesis was added to the Homeopathic Pharmacopeia by Constantine Hering, who later went on to found the American School of Homeopathy.
By reputation, sulphur is a commonly prescribed homeopathic remedy, especially for nighttime congestion and sweating. Homeopathic sulphur combats a wheezy cough and congested head, both of which are suffered in sleep apnea, according to the Complete Family Guide to Homeopathy. Sulphur is noted for its effectiveness with emotionally sheltered individuals who bottle up their feelings.
This remedy for croup may help congestive sleep apnea sufferers as it treats respiratory symptoms that worsen when lying down. The University of Maryland Medical Center also suggests that it relieves tightness in the chest. Spongia tosta is derived from the sea sponge and like Lachesis, it is prescribed for individuals who are naturally fearful and suffer from anxiety and, in some cases, heart palpitations.
- "Complete Guide to Homeopathy;" Christopher Hammond; 1995
- Center of Education and Development of Clinical Homeopathy: History of Lachesis mutus
- University of Maryland Medical Center: Sleep Apnea
- British Medical Journal: Clinical trials of homeopathy
- Journal of Clinical Pharmacology: A systematic review of systematic reviews of homeopathy