Research has shown that there is a very strong
link between sleep apnea
and high blood pressure. It is estimated that around fifty percent
people with sleep apnea also suffer from high blood pressure, and also
that the same percentage of people with hypertension also suffer from
high blood pressure.
these are merely estimates. The main
problem in determining just how strong of a link between sleep apnea
and hypertension there is lies in the diagnosis of sleep apnea.
majority of people with high blood pressure have been diagnosed by
their doctor and are seeking treatment for this condition. However,
sleep apnea remains
largely undiagnosed in most individuals, and it is
thought that as many as
ninety percent of people suffering from sleep
apnea have never been properly diagnosed.
fact, while people pay
much closer attention to most aspects of their health nowadays, their
quality of sleep and the effect that it has on the body is largely
ignored. This is despite the fact that numerous studies have repeatedly
shown that good quality
sleep is just as important as a proper diet and
exercise for a person’s overall level of health.
as more and more doctors are becoming aware about the effects of
sleeping disorders on health, the diagnosis of sleep apnea has started
to rise. Many doctors are now beginning to ask their patients several
questions about their sleep when they are diagnosed with other
disorders, including high blood pressure.
involve asking whether or not the patient snores frequently,
they often feel excessively
sleepy during the daytime, and if their
partner has ever observed that they stop breathing for short periods
of these are common symptoms of sleep apnea, and by
asking these questions, doctors are able to easier diagnose sleep apnea
and treat it as a cause of the patient’s other health problems. Still,
many doctors continually
ignore sleep apnea’s role in causing
hypertension and other health problems.
In fact, it is estimated
that the majority of people who are finally diagnosed with sleep apnea
have been showing symptoms of the disorder for an average of seven years,
and have seen their doctor and other specialists numerous time due to
other conditions related to or directly caused by sleep apnea.
course, there is always the chance that the two conditions are not
related, as being
significantly overweight is a major contributing
factor to both.
likely, being overweight or obese may
lead a person to develop both of these conditions, and sleep apnea
might not actually be causing the hypertension. Read more about sleep
apnea and weight gain here.
some evidence to show that even sleep apnea sufferers who are not
overweight are still at
an increased risk for developing high blood
is because a lack of quality sleep, whether due to sleep
apnea or another sleeping disorder such as insomnia, can cause
excessive daytime sleepiness and fatigue, both of which can severely
degrade the body’s ability to function and regulate itself properly.
has also shown that during each apneic episode or cessation of
breathing, a person’s blood pressure tends to spike, and
often it will
not return to normal levels until the person fully wakes
because the lower levels of oxygen in the blood caused by the apnea
cause the heart to pump harder and faster in order for the brain to get
the oxygen it needs. Over time, this can cause a person’s overall
twenty four hour blood pressure levels to remain abnormally high.
Can You Do About Sleep Apnea and Hypertension?
question of what do to if you have both sleep apnea and high blood
pressure is one that comes up quite often, and the best answer we can
give you is to look at
the cause of the conditions, specifically if you are
overweight. If you
are overweight, this is probably what is causing you to suffer from
both sleep apnea and hypertension.
the first step will be to
reduce your weight to a more healthy level through proper
and exercise. In many cases, bringing yourself down to a healthy weight
can help to reduce or even completely eliminate both conditions, so it
is highly recommended.
some people with sleep apnea still suffer from the
condition even after losing a significant amount of weight. If this is
the case, or if your doctor determines that you have more moderate to
severe sleep apnea, then it is recommended that you immediately begin a
those with severe sleep apnea, there is
basically only one option for treatment, and that is the use of a CPAP
machine every night while you sleep. This machine will
blow a constant
stream of air into your lungs, allowing you to sleep more soundly and
breathe normally while doing so.
is a very effective, albeit
somewhat uncomfortable treatment for sleep apnea. In addition, the use
of CPAP therapy has been shown to have a very positive effect
reducing a person’s blood pressure not only when sleeping, but
throughout the day.
if you have been diagnosed with sleep apnea or show any of
the symptoms, it is important to make an appointment to get the
treatment you need, as it can not only reduce or eliminate your
sleeping disorder, but also help prevent or eliminate other serious
medical conditions, like hypertension.
to Sleep Apnea Symptoms
to the Snoring