SOURCE: European Lung Foundation, news release, April 16, 2015
FRIDAY, April 24, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Playing a wind instrument may reduce your risk of sleep apnea, a new study suggests.
Researchers in India tested the lung function of 64 people who played a wind instrument and 65 others who didn't.
Even though there was no difference in the two groups' lung function tests, the people who played a wind instrument had a lower risk of developing obstructive sleep apnea.
This is likely because playing a wind instrument results in stronger muscles in the upper airways, the researchers said. Sleep apnea is a potentially serious disorder involving disrupted breathing.
"The findings of our small study present an interesting theory on preventative measures or treatment in sleep apnea," study author Silas Daniel Raj, from the Sree Balaji Medical College and Hospital in Tamil Nadu, India, said in a European Lung Foundation news release.
"If the findings are confirmed in larger groups, wind instrument playing could become a cheap and non-invasive method of preventing sleep apnea in those at risk of developing the condition," Raj added.
The study was presented April 17 at the Sleep and Breathing Conference in Barcelona, Spain. Findings presented at meetings are generally considered preliminary until they've been published in a peer-reviewed journal.
The American Academy of Family Physicians has more about sleep apnea.