April 15, 2020
Part of what makes sleep apnea such a dangerous condition is how easily it can go undetected. Of the 22 million Americans suffering from it right now, roughly 80% don’t even realize it. Consequently, if you fall under this category, you might be making decisions that are aggravating your condition without knowing it – and that includes the use of electronic cigarettes that already hurt your body in other ways. Can vaping make sleep apnea worse? Read on to learn the answers that could mean the difference between sweet dreams and a life of constant exhaustion – or worse.
What is Sleep Apnea?
Have you ever woken up in the middle of the night gasping for air? You might have been experiencing a sleep apnea episode. People with this disorder find themselves unable to breathe multiple times during the night as their airways become blocked. The body is forced to wake up to get some much-needed oxygen. Not only does this mean you aren’t spending enough time in the all-important deeper stages of sleep (leaving you feeling tired throughout the day), but over time the stress that the loss of oxygen puts on your cardiovascular system could lead to a sudden heart attack.
What is Vaping?
Vaping is, simply put, the use of electronic cigarettes in place of traditional ones. A special liquid containing nicotine and other chemicals is heated up and turned into an aerosol for you to inhale. It has been marketed as a healthier alternative to regular smoking, but as time has passed, it has become more and more obvious that it leads to all of the same health issues, which naturally includes addiction and withdrawal.
How Does Vaping Affect Sleep Apnea?
First of all, the nicotine that electronic cigarettes contain will make it more difficult for you to sleep in general by raising your body’s adrenaline levels and increasing your heart rate. As you might imagine, this makes it much harder for you to fall asleep in the first place. Furthermore, studies have found people who vape experience breathing interruptions more often than those that don’t; this is probably because nicotine can inflame the tissues in your nose, throat, and lungs, making it more likely that airflow will be blocked in some way?
What Can You Do About Vaping and Sleep Apnea?
Naturally, you should have two goals: giving up vaping and stopping your sleep apnea as soon as possible. Research programs that can help you give up electronic cigarettes; at the same time, talk to a sleep dentist about your disorder and what your treatment options are.
Both sleep apnea and vaping can both be devastating for your overall health. Luckily, by getting help from a sleep expert as soon as possible, you can stop these issues long before you have to pay for them with your life.
About the Author
Dr. Pamela West has been involved in treating sleep apnea for over 5 years; as a member of the American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine, she’s an expert in diagnosing the cause of the disorder and creating an ideal treatment plan for each patient. If you’re worried about vaping affecting the quality of your sleep, you can schedule an appointment at her Las Vegas practice, iSleep Solutions, by visiting her website or calling (702) 602-2000.
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