Is Sleep Apnea a “Man’s Disease”?
Many may think that sleep apnea only affects men, but thanks to extensive research we now know that that is not the case. We now know that for every two or three men, one woman is also affected by sleep apnea. It is important that we understand this statistic as in as many as 90% of women, sleep apnea can remain undiagnosed throughout their lifetime. Sleep apnea typically manifests itself through different symptoms, so this can prove to be more difficult and reaching a proper diagnosis.
Why are Women Diagnosed Less with Sleep Apnea?
Most commonly, sleep apnea and women can sometimes be mistaken for depression, anemia, diabetes, or hyperthyroidism. Because the symptoms are so subtle, women are frequently misdiagnosed and are less likely to snore. Some of the most common symptoms women experience with sleep apnea include:
- Daytime sleepiness despite a good night’s rest
- Waking up with dry mouth
- Waking up gasping or coughing
- Morning headaches
- Racing heartbeat
As indicated above a lot of these symptoms can be associated with different illnesses or diseases, so it is important to ask your dentist or your general physician more about sleep apnea, especially if you’re a woman.
Sleep apnea and women can become more common around menopause, but there are other influences as well. Some of these influencers, that most of which are hereditary include:
- The use of alcohol or sleeping pills
- Narrow Airway passages
- Nasal congestion
If you have more questions concerning sleep apnea and would like to talk to a dental professional, feel free to give our Office in Pasadena, TX, a call or send us an email. We at Town Square Dental would love to hear from you and help you on your journey to becoming the healthiest you ever!