If you are plagued by snoring or spend your nights tossing and turning and wake up feeling drained, you may be suffering from sleep apnea. Unfortunately, this common condition often goes undiagnosed because many of its side effects can be attributed to other conditions. While you likely know that loud snoring and pauses in your breathing during the night often occur as the result of sleep apnea, you may not know that the condition can affect your heart and even lead to conditions like diabetes.
Let’s take a look at some of the lesser known side effects of sleep apnea.
For many people who suffer from sleep apnea, an irregular heartbeat becomes a regular occurrence. When you stop breathing briefly then start again, the lack of oxygen causes your heart rate to slow down then speed back up rapidly. Over time, this can have a negative impact on your heart and affect its performance.
Cerebrovascular disease can cause blood flow to the brain to be limited or blocked completely. Because apnea causes your heart rate and blood pressure to drop, it reduces the flow of blood to your brain. Research indicates that sleep apnea may be linked to strokes and other cerebrovascular diseases.
Ischemic Heart Disease
Ischemia occurs when the flow of oxygen and blood to the tissues is restricted. When this occurs in the heart muscle, the condition is known as ischemic heart disease. This usually occurs as the result of blockages in the coronary arteries. Because sleep apnea decreases the overall function of your heart, it can contribute to this problem.
The disruptions in the flow of oxygen and blood caused by sleep apnea can also have an impact on how your body metabolizes. Ongoing research indicates that sleep apnea is one of the many causes of Type 2 Diabetes for this reason.
Sleep Apnea in Brownsville
If you believe that you or your partner may be suffering from sleep apnea in Brownsville, contact us right away. Sleep apnea is a serious condition that can have a major impact on your overall health. It is, however, relatively easy to treat. To schedule an appointment, please contact us today by calling 956-504-5360.
If you snore, you could be suffering from a condition known as sleep apnea. While most of us like to believe that we don’t snore, many of us do. And snoring is one of the most common symptoms of sleep apnea.
Sleep apnea is a serious sleep disorder that you should not ignore. It causes you to stop breaking repeatedly throughout the night and can lead to a number of serious complications. It usually occurs as the result of an obstruction of airflow in the back of the throat. This obstruction prevents air from properly reaching the lungs during sleep.
You may experience sleep apnea as the result of congested sinuses, large tonsils, being overweight and a number of other factors. No matter the cause, sleep apnea contributes to chronic health problems like cardiovascular disease and diabetes.
Is your snoring a sign of sleep apnea? Here are a few signs you may have sleep apnea.
Common Signs of Sleep Apnea
You’re Exhausted All Day No Matter How Much You Sleep
Stopping breathing during the night disrupts you sleep. Even if you do not know it, sleep apnea likely wakes you up several times throughout the night and prevents you from getting the deep, restful sleep you need.
Gasping and choking throughout the night can also cause stress hormones to rise, increasing your heart rate and preventing you from getting restful sleep.
You Wake Up With Headaches
Many people who suffer from sleep apnea wake up with headaches just about every morning. Sleep apnea disrupts blood flow and alters oxygen levels in the brain, potentially resulting in headaches.
You Have High Blood Pressure
High blood pressure, or hypertension, is one of the most common side effects of sleep apnea. In fact, 50% of people with sleep apnea also have hypertension, according to the American Association of Respiratory Care. If you have high blood pressure that is difficult to control, sleep apnea could be a contributing factor. Sleep apnea puts a lot of stress on your body and your heart, and it can cause blood pressure to rise.
Your Moods Are Inconsistent
We all get a bit moody from time to time, but if you constantly feel like your mood is all over the place, a sleep disorder could be to blame. Waking up throughout the night makes you excessively tired and may cause you to feel moody and irritable. If you seem to be getting enough hours of sleep but you are still feeling cranky, sleep apnea may be to blame.
If you have any reason to suspect that you or a loved one is suffering from sleep apnea, talk to your doctor. At Sinus and Snoring Centers of Texas, we can help. We offer a number of sleep apnea solutions, and we can help you find the one that is best suited to your particular situation. To learn more about our sleep apnea solutions or to schedule a consultation, please contact us today by calling 956-504-5360.
Sleep apnea is a common condition in which you stop breathing while sleeping. The pauses can last from a few seconds to minutes, and sufferers may stop breathing 30 times or more per hour.
In most patients, sleep apnea is an ongoing condition that disrupts sleep, commonly causing the sufferer to shift from deep sleep into lighter sleep.
Sleep apnea causes a poor quality of sleep, often causing patients to feel drowsy during the day. In fact, sleep apnea is a leading
cause of excessive daytime tiredness.
How Sleep Apnea is Diagnosed
Many cases of sleep apnea go undiagnosed simply because the patient is unaware that there is a problem. Sleep apnea cannot be detected during a routine office visit, and there is no blood test for sleep apnea.
In order to diagnose sleep apnea, patients must participate in a sleep study in which his or her sleep is carefully monitored by a medical professional.
Types of Sleep Apnea
The most common type of sleep apnea is obstructive sleepapnea, or OSA. In patients with this condition, the airway becomes blocked or collapses during sleep, resulting in breathing pauses or shallow breathing. Air that manages to squeeze past the blockage can cause loud snoring.
Central sleep apnea is another, less common, type of sleep apnea. This condition occurs as the result of the area of the brain that controls breathing not sending correct signals to the breathing muscles. Patients with central sleep apnea make no effort to breathe for brief periods during sleep. Snoring typically does not occur in cases of central sleep apnea.
Sleep Apnea Risks
When left untreated, sleep apnea can…
Increase the risk of or worsen heart failure
Increase the risk of heart attack, high blood pressure, stroke, obesity and diabetes
Increase the risk of irregular heartbeats
Lead to an increased risk of driving or work-related accidents
How Sleep Apnea is Treated
Because sleep apnea is a chronic condition, long-term management is generally necessary. CPAP machines, mouthpieces, surgery and lifestyle changes are all commonly prescribed. Your doctor will determine the best course of action depending upon your symptoms, the severity of the condition and other factors.