Poor Bone Health Could Be Impacted by Sleep Apnea

Poor Bone Health Could Be Impacted by Sleep Apnea

princ_rm_photo_of_stages_of_osteoporosisRecent research has shown that those patients that suffer from sleep apnea, which is one of the most common sleeping disorders that affects millions of people around the world, could face a higher chance of developing the bone-thinning disorder known as osteoporosis. The research found that this is especially the case for women and older individuals.

The Study

After completing the research, the study showed that because sleep apnea deprives the human body of much needed oxygen, the bones can become weakened and raise the risk of developing osteoporosis, plus it can also lead to bone fractures on falls and accidents that wouldn’t normally cause injury. These injuries can cause numerous problems for your health and in some cases can even lead to death.

The study first appeared in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism and followed the medical records of close to 1,400 participants in Taiwan. These participants were diagnosed previously with obstructive sleep apnea between 2000 and 2008. Researchers took this information and compared it to that of 20,600 more people that had not been diagnosed previously with obstructive sleep apnea.

After the initial launch of the study and six more years of following through and analyzing any and all information that came from it, those with sleep apnea were 2.7 times more likely to develop osteoporosis. They determined that the chance of developing the bone-thinning disease was likelier to occur in women and older patients with sleep apnea.

“As more and more people are diagnosed with obstructive sleep apnea worldwide, both patients and health care providers need to be aware of the heightened risk of developing other conditions,” Dr. Kai-Jen Tien from the Chi Mei Medical Center in Tainan, Taiwain said. He was the co-author of the study stated in a news release put out on their findings.

More information between the relationship between sleep apnea and bone health needs to be done to lend more support to the study in an effort to find ways to prevent conditions like osteoporosis.

What is Sleep Apnea?

According to the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, sleep apnea is a common disorder that occurs when you have one or more pauses in breathing or shallow breaths while you sleep. These pauses in breathing can occur for just a few seconds, or last for several minutes. They can occur as many as 30 times an hour while you sleep and usually when the pauses in breathing lasts for an extended amount of time and you begin to breathe again, you will let out a loud gasp or sound as though you are choking. Sleep apnea is a chronic condition that disrupts your sleep and affects your ability to have a good night of sleep. When apneas occur, you fall out of a deep sleep and end up sleeping lighter, which has numerous negative effects on the body and could make you feel drowsier during the day.

A person that suffers from sleep apnea is at a high risk of developing numerous severely dangerous and fatal illness and conditions. Among those illnesses include high blood pressure, higher chance of having a stroke, heart disease and heart attack.

What is Osteoporosis?

Osteoporosis is simply the thinning of the bones, which can in turn, lead to serious bone fractures during innocent accidents. As we covered, it is more common to occur in women and older individuals, but other possible risk factors include low body weight, low sex hormones, certain medications and smoking. There are ways to help your body cope with osteoporosis including exercising regularly and adding vitamin D and calcium to your daily diet.

How Can You Treat Sleep Apnea?

This chronic condition doesn’t have to signal the end of your life as we know it. If you allow sleep apnea to go untreated, it could lead to fatal health problems and conditions. There aren’t any medical treatments that can help treat sleep apnea, rather there are lifestyle changes you can make that are supposed to make an impact on your sleeping problem.

From mouth pieces and breathing devices, to surgery and exercising more, there are countless different ways

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you can help correct your sleep apnea and in turn, help provide relief to your bones and prevent osteoporosis. Conditions like high blood pressure that are treated have also been known to help your body correct your sleep disorder.

Some of the most known and easiest ways to help prevent sleep apnea is to change some nasty habits including drinking alcohol within four hours of going to bed, smoking cigarettes, lose weight, change the position in which you go to sleep (stomach, back, side).

Researchers still have a lot of work left in order to help those with sleep apnea and osteoporosis fully understand their correlation to each other and possible treatment options.

About the Author

541480_10151782779092178_1954746168_nHobson Lopes is a 2012 graduate of Western Connecticut State University in Danbury, Conn. He is a professional writer who will be releasing a cookbook in January 2014 called Men Cook Too. He is also the owner of The First Pitch and can be followed on Twitter.



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