Five Unusual Symptoms of Sleep Apnea

Many people end up reaching out to us to get tested for obstructive sleep apnea because they’re experiencing the hallmark symptom of the condition: chronic snoring. But there are other lesser-known symptoms that can be signs that you’re one of the tens of millions also suffering from the condition. Here are five unusual symptoms that could be indicative of obstructive sleep apnea:

  1. Night sweats. While various factors can cause night sweats, research indicates that about 30% of people with OSA experience this symptom. The body’s lack of oxygen during OSA triggers a sympathetic fight-or-flight response, leading to night sweats.
  2. Frequent awakenings. Nocturia, or waking up at least twice a night to urinate, is commonly associated with OSA. Addressing the sleep disorder can reduce these nighttime awakenings.
  3. Teeth grinding. Known as bruxism, grinding or clenching teeth during sleep may be linked to OSA. The theory suggests that blocked airways prompt mouth and jaw muscles to move, causing teeth grinding. This can lead to temporomandibular joint dysfunction and headaches.
  4. Morning headaches. Studies have found a connection between OSA and waking up with daily or frequent headaches. The cause is not well-established but may be multifactorial, manifesting as a pressing sensation on both sides of the forehead.
  5. Depression, fatigue, and insomnia. OSA symptoms can mimic mental health issues such as depression, fatigue, and insomnia. Sleep disruption may lead to difficulties in thinking, reacting, remembering, and problem-solving, affecting both men and women, although women may underreport atypical symptoms.

If you or a loved one exhibits any of these signs, it’s crucial to seek professional help. Untreated obstructive sleep apnea not only affects the quality of sleep but also poses serious health risks, including hypertension, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and depression. Don’t let the silence of the night mask a potentially life-threatening condition.

Source: Five weird signs of sleep apnea (CNN)

Published On: February 12, 2024 Categories: Sleep Apnea, Wellness