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Sleep Apnea is More Serious than You Realize

by: Stefan Simonovic

Source: Flickr

While some of us worry if there’ll be enough sun to hit the beach tomorrow, others are wondering if they’ll ever find love online. And while these are both valid worries, there are still those among us who are fighting to experience one of the most basic human needs normally, which is sleep.

There’s no denying that sleep apnea is a real condition and that many, many people suffer from it. It might seem like it’s just a snoring problem that it isn’t that serious to begin with, but studies have proven not only that this condition is more common than what most people think, but also that it’s more dangerous than most of us realize.

No Sleep = More Need for Sleep

We’ll start things off with the most logical consequence of sleep apnea, which is basically sleepiness all around.

By definition, sleep apnea is a sleep-related breathing disorder that most of us will describe as “really loud snoring.” However, it actually comes in two forms: obstructive and central sleep apnea.

The former is the most common form and revolves around an actual physical obstruction in the vascular system that’s preventing normal breathing, while the latter refers to failed signals from the brain to the muscle groups that are responsible for our breathing. Sometimes, a person can even have a combination of the two.

Now, considering that sleep apnea can easily prevent a person from sleeping normally, it often results in having a larger than usual need to sleep when you’re supposed to be wide awake. This can cause many different issues, most dangerous of which are related to driving. Just imagine falling asleep behind the steering wheel because you woke up about 10 times last night since you weren’t able to breathe properly.

Critical Failure

Still, we haven’t even mentioned the most dangerous risks of sleep apnea. Namely, most people will link their drowsiness with current stress or a depressive episode without being aware that their sleep apnea is actually causing these. More importantly, they won’t know that it can trigger some far more serious illnesses and conditions, too.

It’s been proven over and over again that sleep apnea more often than not affects the overall quality of one’s life. Differently put, you can’t perform your everyday tasks normally, your work performance falls off and you’re susceptible to having your emotional and mental health degraded.

However, the most serious risks of this condition come in the form of cardiovascular events. As it happens, sleep apnea can easily cause a person’s oxygen levels to drop, therefore endangering some of the more vital organs like the heart, brain, and lungs.

Studies have shown that those who suffer from sleep apnea have a much higher risk of stroke, cardiac arrest, arrhythmia, early memory change, pre-diabetes and even full-blown diabetes than those without the condition.

So, the next time you hear someone snore really loudly and roll restlessly in bed due to it, advise them to see a doctor about it and get proper treatment for their condition.


About the author:

Stefan is a writer and a blogger in his spare time. He also works for First Beat Media, a company that mainly focuses on the online dating niche and similar services.


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