Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Can't Sleep Heart Trouble

If you can’t sleep due to heart trouble it may be may be caused by the following conditions; anxiety, illness, high blood pressure, low blood pressure, an arrythmia, hyperthyroidism, heart failure and congestive heart failure. A new study found that heart failure and coronary heart disease in middle-aged and older men is linked to obstructive sleep apnea. When men suffer from obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) they are 58% more likely to develop heart problems over eight years compared to those without OSA. The study at Boston University School of medicine monitored 1927 men and 2495 women over 40 years of age. All participants were free of heart disease at the start of the study.

What is obstructive sleep apnea? Obstructive sleep apnea or OSA is a sleep disorder in which breathing stops for a short time (at least 10 seconds) and is frequently interrupted during sleep. OSA occurs when the muscles in the back of the throat fail to keep the airway open, despite the person’s efforts to breathe causing fragmented sleep and low blood oxygen levels. People that are oxygen starved often have heart disease, memory problems, moody and suffer from hypertension. OSA can be life-threatening and you should consult with a physician if you feel you are experiencing it. Other factors that may be to blame for OSA are an enlarged tongue, tonsils or uvula, being overweight, having a recessed chin, large neck, large overbite, alcohol abuse, over 40, ethnicity (more African-Americans, Pacific-Islanders and Hispanics have OSA) and sleep apnea has been known to run in families.

[caption id="attachment_203" align="alignright" width="211" caption="Can't Sleep Heart Trouble"]malehearttrouble[/caption]

Do you snore? Chronic snoring is a strong indication that you may have OSA and should be evaluated by your doctor. Other indications are; sleeplessness, restlessness, memory problems, lack of concentration, unable to focus, depression, sexual dysfunction, falling asleep at work or driving and if left untreated could lead to; high blood pressure, heart attack, congestive heart failure, cardiac arrhythmia, stroke and even death.

According to the study there is a lot of undiagnosed OSA especially with men, only around 10% were diagnosed and they were associated with the development of heart decease especially those in the age range of 40-70 years. Older men over 70 and women did not yield the same results.

I cant sleep when my partner snores. If you or your partner snores and suspect that either of you have OSA it would be a good idea to keep a sleep journal of your sleep habits such as; snoring, gasping, stop breathing, choking and periods of waking during the night. Also note how you feel during the day, if you are drowsy or in need of a nap. Any symptoms you are having will help your doctor with his diagnosis. List all medications and supplements you are taking, provide your medical history and indicate if your insurance provider will cover you if a sleep center is recommended. At a sleep center you will be required to stay overnight so they can monitor you while asleep as this is the most common method used to diagnosis OSA. They will monitor your sleep state, oxygen levels, eye movement, muscle activity, heart rate and respiratory effort to determine if you have sleep apnea and its severity.

Many sleep specialists treat obstructive sleep apnea with a continuous positive airway pressure device (CPAP). CPAP is a mask that fits over the nose and/or mouth, and gently blows air into the airway to help keep it open during sleep.

If they discover your sleep apnea is due to a physical abnormality they may suggest using a dental appliance, which reposition the lower jaw and tongue, and/or upper airway surgery to remove the tissue that is causing the obstruction. In general, these treatments are for milder OSA or those that suffer from chronic snoring.

[caption id="attachment_204" align="alignright" width="273" caption="Seek Medical Advice if you Can't Sleep Heart Trouble"]medical advice[/caption]

Here are some tips to help reduce the severity of OSA:

• Lose weight. If you are overweight there is extra pressure on your neck. Losing 10% of your body fat may cure your OSA.

• Avoid alcohol. Alcohol causes your airway breathing muscles to relax and causes you to wake up frequently during the night.

• Stop smoking. Smoking swells your upper airway and make snoring worse.

• Sleep on your side. Use a pillow designed to keep you from rolling over onto your back.

The most important treatment for those with OSA is using the CPAP whenever you sleep. Getting the right amount of sleep is essential to maintain health and keep heart trouble at bay. Seek medical guidance if you are suffering from your heart rate increasing when you can’t sleep, insomnia, restlessness, snoring and the inability to stay asleep easy during the night as they may recommend treatment options or the opinion from a sleep specialist. Please note that prescribed sleep aides, OTC medications or some in-store sleep aide devices might be more harmful if you have OSA. It is best advised to leave the treatment up to the professionals.

The content provided in Can't Sleep Heart Trouble is for information purposes only, intended to raise the awareness of different solutions for sleep problems and should not be considered medical advice. For medical diagnosis and treatment, please see your qualified health-care professional.
GLG America Logo

No comments:

Post a Comment