Snoring is one of the crucial health conditions that many of us experience but for the most part we don’t pay heed to. Often the snorer becomes the butt of all jokes in the family and their bed partner ignores it thinking that it is just a nuisance.
But unfortunately, snoring is much more than just that. Snoring can have very serious health implications. At times, snoring can be a symptom breathing pauses or brief breaks during sleeping. This causes a drop in the level of oxygen and this condition is known as Sleep Apnea.
Who Are Prone to Sleep Apnea?
Obstructive Sleep Apnea is quite common. Almost 50% of the overweight people have sleep apnea. This happens because the excessive weight around the neck and the chest deteriorates the breathing difficulties further.
But there are also many people who are not overweight but still have sleep apnea. The risk of sleep apnea is quite high in people who –
- Have a family history of Sleep Apnea
- People who are Overweight
- Have who have enlarged tonsils or small airways
- Are male, though women can also have sleep apnea and can suffer from its ill-effects.
- Have kids with enlarged tonsils or adenoids who snore loudly
Risks of Sleep Apnea
Sometimes snoring and the effects can be relatively benign, and they can be corrected by the simple things like changing the sleeping posture or reducing the consumption of alcohol. However, the snoring can also be a red flag of a much more serious health issue and one that can be fatal if left untreated.
Here are some of the serious health conditions that snoring and sleep apnea can give rise to. Just take a look.
- Arrhythmia or Irregular Heart Rhythm– The risks of long-term snoring or Sleep Apnea can augment the irregular heart rhythm to a great extent. The people who have sleep apnea have more chances of developing AFib or Arterial Fibrillation. This is a type of Arrhythmia where the upper and lower chambers of the heart don’t beat in the same rhythm. The use of the CPAP machine can lower the risk of AFib.
- Heart Attack and Heart Disease – The sleep apnea condition is associated with the cardiovascular issues like the coronary artery disease and the high blood pressure which can lead to possible heart attacks. Research suggests that the sleep apnea patients are prone to the fatal heart attacks and the non-fatal heart conditions. The treatment for sleep apnea is quite effective and as it has such dire risks for your heart, you should treat the condition before it is too late.
- Stroke – The loud snoring can be caused by sleep apnea. It can enhance the risk of carotid atherosclerosis. This is nothing but the thinning of the carotid arteries which is caused by the fatty plaque deposits. Stroke can be caused by the excessive plaque in the carotid arteries. The louder and the longer a person snores, the greater is the long-term risk for stroke. These snoring vibrations are mostly at play here.
- Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease or GERD – This is a chronic digestive ailment in which the stomach acids back up into the oesophagus and the tender lining can get irritated because of that. The disorganised way in which the sleep apnea patients or snorer’s throat opens and closes, as the air moves in and out of the lungs, can lead to alterations in pressure. The pressure changes can cause the stomach acids to backup into the oesophagus at the time of sleeping.
- Mental Health Problems – Sleep Apnea can have a substantial mental impact on a person’s mental health which can have far-reaching consequences ranging from the crankiness to the serious depressive issue. There is a distinct link between snoring, sleep apnea and depression and it is brought forth by the studies. Studies have revealed the fact that more daytime sleepiness a person reports, the more are his or her chances of experiencing anxiety and mild depression. Treating sleep apnea assists in controlling depression as a result.
- Pregnancy Complications – The snoring during the last trimester of pregnancy can happen because of weight gain. The sad part is that snoring is also linked with pregnancy complications of some sort. This connection is not conclusive or clear as of now, but it may not be surprising as the interrupted sleep can affect almost every part of the health. The would-be mothers who snore loudly should speak with the ob-gyn or family doctor before long in order to avoid the pregnancy complications.
Now that you are aware of the potential health complications that snoring can bring about you should immediately seek for snoring solutions if you are a snorer and get yourself checked to know if you have sleep apnea. A lot is possible if you can go for early detection and treatment. This can help you to restore your overall health after having good nights’ sleep without interruptions.