Sleep Apnea is a life threatening disease, not just a condition that makes you drowsy the next day. There are a number of ways you might potentially die from Sleep Apnea and if you or a loved one has this condition than it is vitally important that you are aware of the risks.
The definition of Sleep Apnea is a stopping of breathing while you sleep. This can last as long as several minutes and can occur many times per hour. This issue at a minimum interrupts REM sleep and impacts your performance and attentiveness during waking hours. The symptoms of Sleep Apnea exhibits itself in snoring, aggravating those around you. In some circumstances, it can seriously impact your health and, and most drastically, can cause death.
The most common documented fatal risks of Sleep Apnea are operating heavy machinery and driving a car.
The most significant health complication that can result from Sleep Apnea is sleep apnea induced cardiac arrest. This is rare, but choking hundreds of times in a night is so stressful that it increases blood pressure and can in fact cause a heart attack. Though a very rare situation, it is possible, particularly if you are already at risk for heart disease.
In addition to contributing to high blood pressure and possible cardiac arrest, there is a also a more sinister and common risk of fatality- exacerbated chronic conditions such as diabetes. The stress of sleep deprivation can make your body more insulin resistant, which is the root cause of diabetes.
Being groggy during the day from lack of sleep as a result of untreated Sleep Apnea can affect many aspects of your life. Though perhaps a nuisance, managing your Sleep Apnea with CPAP is the best solution for maintaining a high quality life and mitigating potential health issues caused by Sleep Apnea.