Is sleep apnea Fatal?

Heart attack

Heart attack could result from ignored sleep apnea

You argue that you might not die in your Sleep from apnea. But when the body feels like it’s not getting enough oxygen during Sleep, it pushes for an awakening. At this time, the breathing airways open, and breathing continues. Because of this mechanism, you stand a minimal chance of suffocating in your Sleep.

Ignoring Sleep Apnea

People with ignored sleep apnea:

  • are more likely to have a heart attack
  • have a 2 to 3 times higher risk for having a stroke
  • face more than three times the risk of premature death

The more intensive one’s sleep apnea, the higher the chance for either an attack or death. In the Wisconsin Sleep Cohort follow-up published in Sleep in 2008, 42 percent of the fatalities in people with severe sleep apnea were due to cardiovascular disease. Severe, in clinical terms, is defined as having an apnea-hypopnea index (AHI) grade of 20 or more respiratory interruptions per hour.

Heart disease and sleep apnea

People having a heart condition might be well advised to consider their sleep health to understand better why, as a quarter of all fatalities in the US are cardiac-related. Heart disease kills more people than any other sickness or condition, and for those who die as a result of it, at least 6 percent have been proved to have had sleep apnea, as well.

Women experience heart disease uniquely than men, as well. Two forms of cardiac problems more typical for women are like;

Drug use and sleep apnea

Drug abuse

Sniffer drugs increase your possibility of dying from sleep apnea

Having cocaine, opiates, methadone, alcohol, and ecstasy in your bloodstream can increase the chances of dying from severe sleep apnea. Using illicit drugs throughout one’s life can destroy organs in a way that makes sleep apnea assured.

  • Cocaine use (or use of other “sniffed” drugs) damages the structures of nasal and upper airways, causing the collapse of these tissues during Sleep.
  • Opiates are well known for suppressing the respiratory system during Sleep when it depends on involuntary brain signaling to function. When the signals from the brain to the diaphragm are suppressed by opioid medications, they lose strength, causing a reduced tone in the muscles that should be collaborating to support breathing.
  • Alcohol, by itself, is a major respiratory destroyer that should be avoided prior to Sleep.

References and Resources