Women At Higher Risk Of Sleep Apnea

Health risk factors, and indeed, health overall is very different for men and women. There are biological distinctions, and I do not mean just in terms of secondary sexual characteristics. The size and shape of organs, and the materials they make, are different from each other. This is why diseases strike the two sexes differently, not to mention the fact that there are his and her diseases as well.

Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea refers to a condition in which you stop breathing during sleep for extended periods of time. During these bouts of sleep related stops, the patients does not breathe, which can cause insomnia, snoring, headaches, and can even exasperate already existing conditions like heart disease and nervous disorders. Often times the sleep apnea is something that you can be born with, but often enough it develops through problems like a broken nose, mucus in the lungs and respiratory system, or a deviated septum. Chest pains and lung issues are also often related to sleep apnea.

Biological Sex Is A Factor

In a recent study from Los Angeles, it turns out that not only are women more likely to have sleep apnea, but they are also more likely to be affected by some of the hidden dangers of this disease.

For instance, people with OSA (obstructive sleep apnea) were tested in numerous ways to see if their heart rates would change. They had to do mildly physical tasks like squeeze things, put a foot in cold water, and breath heavily. These things would usually cause normal people heart rates to rise slightly. People with sleep apnea however performed these tasks and their heart rates either did not really react at all, or only with massive distortions, meaning that the heart rate would only change much later. This is a hidden negative side effect, which means that your body works slower and reacts slower to problems that it faces. This is definitely a problem.

The study also found that women were more susceptible to developing these hidden problems that men, and that their bodies did worse under the stress of sleep apnea and all that this disease brings with it. Why this is so is yet to be understood, but this study does drive home how incredibly important it is to seek help if you have this problem, especially if you are a woman. With all the craziness in today’s world, a little sleep trouble is not something that everyone has the luxury of worrying about, but it seems that neglecting your sleep apnea can cost you dearly, so it is definitely worth looking into. 

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