One of the most overlooked health conditions is sleep apnea, which is a sleep disorder where one's breath starts and stops throughout the night. Because we aren’t awake while it’s happening, we have a tendency to either ignore it or not even realize that it's occurring. However, sleep apnea is a very serious condition that studies have shown can cause heart disease, depression, and diabetes.
Because it’s so commonly associated with snoring, sleep apnea is often viewed as a male problem. But not only is it prevalent in women, a new study shows that sleep apnea may also have a more dangerous effect on a woman’s heart.
By following 1500 initially healthy people for 14 years, researchers found that sleep apnea in women was associated with troponin T, a marker for heart disease.
"These were women who tended to be older, their average age was 63," said Dr. John Swartzberg, head of the UC Berkeley Wellness Letter's editorial board. "What they found was that women with sleep apnea had high rates of complications, such as high blood pressure, heart failure, heart enlargement, even premature death."
Dr. Swartzberg also stressed how important it is for women to get screened for sleep apnea. "Don't think sleep apnea is just a man's problem because men tend to snore more," he said. "Snoring is a warning sign, but you can have sleep apnea without snoring or very little snoring."
Although getting tested for sleep apnea can be trying—it usually requires spending the night at a sleep clinic—it’s well worth it.
Get a good night's sleep in these Lake Shorts Set Marine Stripe Pajamas, and let us know if you plan on getting checked for sleep apnea.