Blood Pressure & Sleep
How Do You Sleep?
Your answer may provide a clue to the health of your blood pressure. If you often wake up still tired and with a headache, if you've been told you snore heavily, and/or you find yourself nodding off during the day, you may have obstructive sleep apnea. With this condition, your breathing is frequently interrupted during the night as your throat keeps closing. Studies have found that half of those with obstructive sleep apnea also have hypertension.
Apnea can be treated with surgery or continuous positive airway pressure, in which you wear a mask at night to constantly deliver air that keeps your airway open. If you suspect sleep apnea is your problem, ask your doctor for a referral to a sleep study center for the necessary tests. Treating apnea will also reduce hypertension and could save your life.