Sleep apnea is a serious medical condition that can affect your entire well-being and increase the possibility that you’ll develop a number of chronic health issues.
In this blog, the sleep specialists and ear, nose, and throat doctors at eos sleep explain whether sleep apnea can affect high blood pressure.
Can sleep apnea affect blood pressure?
Sleep apnea can have a definite negative impact on your blood pressure. Since the sleep disorder is characterized by repeated pauses in breathing throughout the night, your blood oxygen levels drop suddenly when you’re not breathing. This increases your blood pressure and puts a strain on your entire cardiovascular system.
As a result, if you have sleep apnea, you have an increased risk of developing hypertension (high blood pressure).
And if you already have high blood pressure, sleep apnea can make it harder to control. In fact, most patients who have high blood pressure that’s hard to control also have this sleep disorder.
What treatment options are available?
Two of the most popular treatment options include the following:
- CPAP machine – This machine is the most common type of treatment. It delivers a continuous flow of mild air pressure through a tube attached to a mask you wear over your nose or your nose and mouth. The steady flow of air helps keep your airways open as you sleep, improving the symptoms of sleep apnea.
- Oral appliances – These are often a good option for patients who find CPAP uncomfortable to use. These custom-made devices are worn in your mouth when you sleep to keep your tongue and soft tissues at the back of your throat from collapsing and blocking your airway.
Minimally invasive treatments
- Balloon sinuplasty – This procedure utilizes a tiny balloon that’s inflated in your nasal passages and then removed. It helps relieve congestion associated with chronic sinusitis, which can cause sleep apnea.
- Pillar Procedure – Small implants are inserted into your soft palate to help stiffen it.
- Laser-assisted uvulopalatoplasty (LAUP) – Laser technology is used to shrink the size of a long or large uvula.
- Coblation turbinate reduction – Radio frequency energy is used to shrink the size of your nasal turbinates to open in your airways.
- Palate Coblation – Radio frequency energy is used to stiffen your soft palate.
- Radiofrequency ablation of the tongue – Radio frequency energy is used to tighten and shrink the base of the tongue.
- Laser-assisted tonsil ablation – Laser technology is used to reduce the size of the tonsils.
- Latera implant for nasal airway obstruction – A tiny implant is used to give cartilage support to a collapsed lateral nasal wall.
- Functional endoscopic sinus surgery (FESS) – Small amounts of bone or tissue that are blocking your nasal passages are removed.
- Septoplasty – This procedure corrects a deviated septum when this wall between your two nostrils is blocking your nasal cavity.
- Tonsillectomy – This surgery removes enlarged tonsils that are blocking your airway.
- Uvulopalatopharyngoplasty (UPPP) – This surgery removes the uvula and excess soft tissue of the palate or throat.
- Genioglossus advancement – This surgery pulls the main muscle of the tongue forward to expand and stabilize the airway.
- Hyoid suspension – This surgery pulls the base of the tongue and other soft tissues around the throat forward, anchoring the hyoid bone in the neck to thyroid cartilage (the “Adam’s apple”).
If you have sleep apnea, schedule an appointment today for an evaluation at eos sleep. We’ll correctly diagnose the cause of your issues and devise the most effective treatment plan.