5 Common Health Issues That Are Linked to Sleep Apnea

Sleep Apnea is a frustrating and sometimes debilitating disorder. Not only does it leave an individual exhausted and drowsy, but it can also lead to other problems or be a sign that a larger issue is present in the body. Sleep Apnea is frequently linked to serious health issues and could be a sign that you have a more involved problem at hand. Here are 5 of the most common health issues that are often linked to Sleep Apnea.

  1. High Blood pressure is frequently caused by Sleep Apnea’s obstructive sleep patterns. Waking repeatedly throughout the night can tamper with your body’s hormonal functions and so the body goes into overdrive, increasing blood pressure levels. This results in depleted blood-oxygen levels since oxygen is cut off, and so hypertension is another common result. If Sleep Apnea is the cause of your high blood pressure, treating it properly could significantly reduce your high blood pressure, allowing you to reduce your medications for the disorder if caught early on.
  2. Heart disease is also caused by Sleep Apnea over extended periods of time in serious cases. Heart issues likely arise because of the low oxygen levels in the blood stream. Also, waking in the night can often be quite startling and so many people wake up in a frightened state, which is very stressful over time. Sleep Apnea can often cause issues with heartbeat rhythms leading to cases of stroke or atrial fibrillation. In addition, Sleep Apnea can prevent the body from supplying the brain and heart with the necessary blood flow and oxygen needed for healthy functioning.
  3. Individuals with Type 3 Diabetes are much more likely to experience Sleep Apnea and its symptoms. Over 80% of diabetics have some sort of disruptive sleep issue. Often both of these health issues are caused by obesity. Medical professionals have not found a direct or clear link between sleep apnea and diabetes, however lack of sleep over time can seriously impact insulin levels.
  4. Gaining a significant and unhealthy amount of weight can drastically increase your risk and chances of developing Sleep Apnea issues and symptoms. The majority of individuals with Sleep Apnea are seriously overweight, and losing the weight could help them to reduce their sleep apnea or eliminate the sleeping issues altogether. However, this can often be difficult to do. When the body is overweight, fat collects around the neck region, which can obstruct breathing patterns during sleep. These issues can then influence the body’s endocrine system, releasing hormones that can increase cravings for carbs and sugars, contributing to the weight gain dilemma as an almost endless cycle.
  5. Finally, depression can often be linked to Sleep Apnea issues. Studies have revealed that people with depressive symptoms are about 5 times more likely to have sleeping problems as well. Scientists and physicians are not entirely sure if one causes the other, but the two frequently go hand in hand and so the relationship is noticeable. Sleep deprivation can result in physiological issues, which may eventually lead to mood irregularities that sometimes become so severe as to lead to depression.

Sleep Apnea on its own is a frustrating and serious disorder, however the other issues that often come along with it can be extremely harmful to the body. Sometimes sleeping issues lead to further problems and in others sleep disruption is a symptom of another health problem. Regardless, it is important that you refer to and seek professional medical advice to help reduce your symptoms and ensure there are no other underlying problems you should be aware of.