What Happens If Sleep Apnea Is Left Untreated?

Sleeping well every night is one of the best things you can do for your mind and your overall health. Unfortunately, patients who suffer from sleep apnea are not getting the full night’s rest they need to function properly. Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder in which the soft tissues in the back of the throat relax during sleep, obstructing the airway and limiting proper oxygen flow. More than 22 million people suffer from the effects of sleep apnea. Although there are many people who have been diagnosed, there are still more who have yet to receive a diagnosis or who are not receiving treatment once diagnosed. When sleep apnea remains untreated, it can be extremely damaging to your overall health and lead to serious health complications.

Risks Associated With Sleep Apnea

Untreated sleep apnea can be extremely dangerous for your overall health. When sleep apnea occurs, breathing stops multiple times a night, not allowing the body to get the oxygen it needs. The frequent airflow disruptions lead to serious health complications, such as:

Although you may not be aware that you are waking up multiple times a night, your body is. This is why you may feel tired even after first waking in the morning. Lack of sleep can cause daytime drowsiness, and the likelihood of falling asleep randomly increases.

Think about a baby or toddler in your life who may not have a nap during the day and is irritable and moody. Adults are the same way when they do not get a full night’s rest. Patients with untreated sleep apnea have also been found to have a higher chance of experiencing anxiety and depression.

Heart Problems or High Blood Pressure
Patients who have sleep apnea experience continuous changes in blood oxygen levels, causing irregularities in blood pressure. It also increases the chance of experiencing a heart attack, stroke, or unsteady heartbeat.

If you are a current patient and are experiencing a return of symptoms or want to review your treatment plan, don’t hesitate to reach out to our office. If you are experiencing sleep apnea symptoms for the first time and have been referred to our office, we would love to meet with you. Be sure to contact one of our two offices located in Buffalo, NY and Rochester, NY to schedule an appointment. We provide sleep apnea related treatments to patients in all areas of Western New York as well as Canada. We look forward to seeing you soon!