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Sleep Apnea and Your Heart

Photo of a heart in front of a cardiogramObstructive sleep apnea can be damaging for your heart. Sometimes patients are unaware of how sleep problems or the cessation of breathing can relate to their heart, but the evidence is clear. If you or your partner spot the signs and symptoms of sleep apnea, further investigation and resolution can be better for your overall well-being, including your heart. At All Smiles Sleep Solutions, we can work with you to diagnose the issue and help you get a better night’s rest.

Our bodies are working machines, including many parts working together to make the whole. Obstructive sleep apnea causes a break or disruption in the functioning of our body as a machine. When a person lays down to sleep, this shift makes adjustments in our body, tissue settles differently and muscles relax. As we enter sleep, some of these changes can cause the windpipe to be cut off or reduced in size. This can be due to a number of reasons.

Obstructive sleep apnea, or the cinching of our windpipe, can be due to:
•  Excessive Tissue: Whether the patient naturally has a thicker neck, has gained weight and developed fatty tissue, or the patient simply has excessive tissue in their throat region, the windpipe may be reduced or cut off from being able to breathe well.
•  Structure of the Neck or Throat: Studies show that men tend to develop obstructive sleep apnea more often because their neck is structured more broadly or angular than a female neck. This can be escalated in patients who have enlarged tonsils or adenoids.
Enlarged or Mispositioned Tongue: The tongue can be problematic while you sleep. Some patients find that their tongue can slip back towards their throat, or be just large enough to block their airway.
•  Deviated Septum: The septum, or nose, can make it more difficult to breathe in fully. Whether the nose is naturally deviated or following an impact, the nose positioning can be off-centered causing it to be difficult to breathe as well as you should.
•  Allergies and Turbinate Reduction: Patients who suffer from allergies may have inflamed tissue inside their nose that closes the breathing passage making it more difficult to breathe while laying down.

How Can Sleep Apnea Affect My Heart?

When a person ceases to breathe while sleeping, most often due to an airway restriction, the brain releases adrenaline or a stress hormone. The release of adrenaline wakes the person just enough to gasp for air. The benefit of this natural reaction is getting the oxygen your body needs. The drawback is the frequency that the body has to go without oxygen and jolt to get the oxygen. Most patients will repeat the cessation of breathing and adrenaline to gasp, many, if not hundreds, of times a night, sometimes for years.

The results are often inadequate sleep, blended with irritability, increasing your blood pressure, and ultimately, damaging your heart. Patients with obstructive sleep apnea have been found to be at a much higher risk of stroke and heart disease. We can help you diagnose the issue and create a treatment plan to help.
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All Smiles Sleep Solutions
17200 Camelot Ct. UNIT 101,
Land O’Lakes, FL 34638-7279
Call 813-461-6570
Satellite Location:
802 North Belcher
Clearwater, FL 33675
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All Smiles Sleep Solutions - Dr. Joseph Grimaudo D, 17200 Camelot Ct. UNIT 101, Land O’Lakes, FL 34638 / 813-461-6570 / / 2/20/2024 / Page Keywords: Sleep Apnea Land O Lakes FL /