Sleep apnea is not just about the snoring. It can lead to further health problems and be a sign of underlying issues. Sleep apnea can be very serious and is related to weight gain, diabetes and heart disease, so it’s best to understand its symptoms.
Often, people associate sleep apnea with individuals who need help with snoring, but the risks go deeper, and there are other signs that could mean you have the condition.
Difficulty focusing, thinking, and processing information during the day can be a sign that you’re not actually getting enough sleep at night. Even if you don’t feel like you’ve woken up throughout the night, you could be having a poor quality of sleep because of disruptions that your body is experiencing.
Because of erratic patterns of breathing, your brain doesn’t properly go into REM sleep, and you don’t get that reinvigoration that a night’s rest is supposed to provide.
If you are living a healthy lifestyle and yet suffer from bouts of high blood pressure, it may be a sign that you have sleep apnea. Although hypertensive tendencies can be a genetic predisposition, sleep apnea exacerbates this risk.
Because of the disruptive sleep-wake cycle caused by sleep apnea, your heart rate suffers erratic spikes, and your blood oxygen drops frequently. That then causes sudden onsets of high blood pressure.
Nocturia (Night Urination)
Do you often wake up in the middle of the night to pee? This is a phenomenon called nocturia and can be a sign of sleep apnea as well. Of course, it’s important to make sure that you’ve ruled out other possibilities like medication-induced urination, excessive hydration, and other diseases like kidney failure or diabetes.
A healthy person with a normal sleep pattern would not experience nocturia frequently. This is because our hypothalamus secretes antidiuretic hormones (ADH) that specifically stop us from having to urinate during our sleep. That’s our body’s built-in system to prevent interruptions during this time. With sleep apnea, that process is cut short, and we become more easily aroused from rest.
This one may be harder to pinpoint since there are a multitude of conditions linked to depression. That said, sleep and mental health are very intertwined. When you have sleep apnea, you are more likely to suffer drops in your energy and mood that lead to depression. This can even go hand in hand with other issues, like a shorter temper and anxiety.
This particular symptom is really just present in men who have the condition. Because of how sleep apnea affects blood flow and oxygen levels, it can result in sexual dysfunction. You may find that the lack of proper sleep and circulation results in the inability to hold an erection.
Many adults live with chronic sleep apnea without a diagnosis. Knowing the signs can help you to get the help you need as soon as possible. A sleep center can give you a proper assessment, diagnosis, and treatment plan.
When you sleep better, you can live better. Sleep Better Live Better helps thousands of patients find healthy sleep fixes that drastically improve their quality of life. If you’re looking for sleep apnea solutions in Vancouver, reach out and book an appointment today.