Early recognition and treatment of sleep apnea is important, as it may be associated with:
- Irregular heartbeat
- High blood pressure
- Heart attack
- Daytime sleepiness
- Increased risk of motor vehicle and work accidents
Who is affected by sleep apnea?
Sleep apnea seems to run in some families, suggesting a possible genetic basis. People most likely to have or develop sleep apnea include those who:
- Snore loudly
- Are overweight
- Have high blood pressure
- Have some physical abnormality in the nose, throat, or other parts of the upper airway
- Use of alcohol and sleeping pills increases the frequency and duration of breathing pauses in people with sleep apnea.
How is sleep apnea treated?
Specific treatment will be determined by your health care provider based on:
- Your age,
- overall health,
- and medical history
- Severity of the disease
- Your tolerance for specific medications, procedures, or therapies