Hypertension is a known symptom of sleep apnea. The Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine this month published a study that discovered the risk to the heart could be even greater, with untreated obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) increasing the likelihood of resistant high blood pressure.
Resistant hypertension is elevated blood pressure that doesn’t respond to treatment with medication, sometimes multiple prescriptions simultaneously. In some cases blood pressure resists treatment due to an underlying condition, such as obstructive sleep apnea.
Seeking sleep apnea treatment could be a critical step for making your blood pressure more manageable. Some lifestyle changes are also an effective solution for both OSA and hypertension, including:
- Eating a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and low-fat dairy products – ask your doctor about the DASH diet, or Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension
- Reducing the amount of salt and saturated fats you consume
- Exercising regularly
- Quitting smoking
- Limiting alcohol consumption
- Losing excess weight
Even minor weight loss has been linked to a drastic reduction in the severity of sleep apnea symptoms. By shedding extra pounds, you can limit the interference of oversized structures blocking the airway during sleep as well as improve your overall health, including lowering blood pressure.
To learn more about symptoms and treatment options for obstructive sleep apnea, please contact a local sleep doctor or call 1 (866) 727-6275 (1-8-NO-PAP-MASK) today.