Sleep apnea can stop your breathing from time to time while you sleep. This condition may put people, especially women, at risk for heart problems.
Sleep apnea risks, it turns out, are different for men and women.
Dr. Reena Mehra, of the Cleveland Clinic, says, “There are known sex-specific differences in obstructive sleep apnea. We know that obstructive sleep apnea is two to four times more common in men than it is in women, but when women become post-menopausal, then our risk for obstructive sleep apnea actually increases.”
For men and women who have sleep apnea, the images of their hearts show an increased thickness in the left ventricular wall — the heart’s main pumping chamber.
The difference in thickness was greater for women, maybe due to hormonal changes as women grow older.
Doctors have several treatments for sleep apnea — the most common is the c-pap device.
Treat it. It’s important to your quality of life and your heart.