Diabetes and Sleep Apnea: What You Need To Know
Do you snore? Do you feel fatigued every day? Do you wake up frequently throughout the night? It may be that the shallow breathing or breaks in breathing caused by sleep apnea are the reason. If you have diabetes, it is critical to manage your sleep apnea in order to manage your diabetes. Some 18 million Americans are diagnosed with sleep apnea, but millions more have it and don’t know it.
If you have diabetes, sleep apnea can make it almost impossible for you to manage your diabetes. This is because sleep apnea causes a pause in your breathing while you sleep and increases carbon dioxide in your blood, which leads to:
Insulin resistance so that the body doesn’t use insulin effectively. This causes more sugar in the blood stream leading to high blood sugars
Chronic elevated blood pressure
A higher incidence of heart problems or cardiovascular disease
Early morning headaches
Inadequate rest or sleep can also lead to lack of motivation to exercise or plan meals. This often leads to irritability, which can affect relationships with family, friends and coworkers. Sleepiness also can cause people to forget to take their medications and lead to further diabetes complications.
Sleep apnea may be genetically linked and it is most commonly found in those who are overweight or obese, people who smoke and are over the age of 40.
Could you have an obstruction?
There are different types of sleep apnea, one of which is obstructed sleep apnea (or OSA), which is when breathing is interrupted by a physical block to airflow. With OSA, snoring is common. The National Institutes of Health Continue reading