Snoring is considered a ‘common, but not normal’ condition that affects most people at some point in their lives. It’s characterized by growling, sizzling, growling, gurgling, wheezing, or whistling sounds made during sleep, and can often reduce the quality of sleep for both the snorer and any potential bed or room partners.
Sleep apnea, of course, is a bit worse than ‘typical’ snoring. Obstructive sleep apnea is a condition in which the individual actually stops breathing for short periods of time. The brain, detecting that the body is being deprived of oxygen, then ‘awakens’ the sleeping individual—which disturbs their sleep and often causes them to ‘gasp’ for breath—all without them even realizing that it’s happening.
But according to a new study, snoring and sleep apnea might both be linked to something much more serious.
Snoring and sleep apnea have both been linked to diabetes in older adults
Yes, it turns out that both of these conditions have been linked to an increased risk for diabetes in older adults who suffer from them.
The study was conducted over a 10 year period, and included findings collected from some 6,000 U.S. adults, and the results were definitely eye-opening. It sound as though people who suffer from snoring and sleep apnea may be about twice as likely to develop type 2 diabetes as sound sleepers. [Source: foxnews.com]
The adults in the study were recruited between the years of 1989 and 1993, and were all 65 or older. As of the time that they were enrolled in the study, none of them had type 2 diabetes.
Up through 1999, the participants were asked [every six months] whether or not anyone around them had complained of their snoring. They were also asked about their levels of daytime drowsiness, and were asked if they suffered from any symptoms of insomnia. In addition, their levels of insulin were measured at each checkup, and a note was made if any of them developed type 2 diabetes over the course of the study.
At the end of the study, researchers concluded that people who suffered from sleep apnea were twice as likely to develop diabetes as ‘normal sleepers’, and that people who snored were 27% more likely. In addition, it was noted that people who suffered from daytime drowsiness were 50% more likely to develop diabetes than those without any such symptoms.
To put this in the simplest terms, it would appear that those who experienced the most disturbed-breathing symptoms during sleeping hours had a greater risk for developing diabetes at some point in their lives.
What does this mean?
This study is part of an ever-growing pool of evidence that suggests that sleep is much, much more important than most people realize. But it isn’t just the ‘number of hours slept’ that’s important.
Your quality of sleep is also a huge part of the puzzle. Avoiding conditions like diabetes will help you to live a longer, healthier life—but snoring and sleep apnea can definitely make doing this difficult.
What can you do?
If you tend to suffer from snoring or sleep apnea, then it’s important that you seek help. Regardless of how old you are, it’s still going to affect the quality of your sleep—which is something that you can’t afford to miss out on.
Sleeping well is a part of our natural regeneration process. Our body desperately needs this time to fix problems and rest certain parts of us that are needed during the day. And if we don’t get as much as we need, we’ll start to see a negative difference. We might even end up suffering from a disease or condition, like diabetes, a stroke, or a heart attack.
If you have snoring problems now, you should look into some of the stop snoring devices that we’ve reviewed here on our website. Many of them are inexpensive and backed by clinical trials—so they’ve been proven to be effective and useful in preventing snoring and sometimes sleep apnea.
Finding the right device for you could alleviate the problem and get you back on track to sleeping normally.
Guest Author: Albert J. has a passion for writing and is the main author on www.snoringdevicesaustralia.com blog. To find out more about this topic, please visit his website.