Many physicians are aware of sleep apnea as a problem in men, but it seems that women have just as many problems as well. A study from Uppsala and Umea University published in the European Respiratory Journal discovered that women are almost as likely as men to suffer from sleep apnea. Knowing that sleep apnea is linked with serious health problems this is a big worry. Heart attack, stoke, and hypertension are all examples of conditions associated with sleep apnea.
The study looked at 400 women drawn from a pool of around 10000 women. It found the that half of the group had signs suggestive of obstructive sleep apnea – the most common form of sleep apnea. The sleep apnea was also linked with being overweight and having hypertension (high blood pressure). Many other studies have found this as well.
This study suggests that women and their partners need to aware that sleep apnea is just as big a problem for women as men. It also raises the concern that many women probably do not know that they are suffering from sleep apnea. Because of the links to such serious health issues people need to be more vigilant about sleep apnea.
Sleep apnea is usually treated successfully with continuous positive airway pressure or CPAP. This treatment, while considered uncomfortable and difficult to sleep with by many, is effective in treating apnea and reducing many of the risks of chronic disease. If you are in any doubt about whether you have sleep apnea, be sure to check out our signs and symptoms of sleep apnea page, and schedule a check up with your physician today if you have any of the signs.