New research shows that not getting enough sleep–or getting interrupted sleep because of sleep apnea–impacts your health in many different ways. Not only do you have the direct health effects that come from disturbed sleep, but you experience many indirect effects because you make poor lifestyle choices.
A Wide Range of Behaviors
An observational sleep study of more than 37,000 adult Finns for up to 12 years looked at the impact of not getting enough sleep or getting disturbed sleep on lifestyle choices. They found that people who weren’t getting enough sleep or who got disturbed sleep made poor lifestyle decisions, putting them at risk because of many different lifestyle factors.
For example, people who weren’t getting enough sleep were 20% less likely to quit smoking. People with disturbed sleep were 23% more likely to start high-risk alcohol consumption. They were also 17% more likely to become physically inactive and 12% more likely to become overweight or obese.
These are all lifestyle choices that impact a person’s health, and, in many cases, can contribute to risk of injury and even death.
How Sleep Apnea Makes It Hard to Live a Healthy Life
Sleep apnea makes a significant impact on your ability to choose a healthy lifestyle. When you aren’t getting enough sleep, no matter how long you spend in bed, your willpower is impacted. It’s hard to make decisions and commit to challenging choices–like quitting smoking–when you don’t have the energy reserves to stick to your resolve.
And, speaking of energy, it’s also harder for people to quit smoking if they have sleep apnea because they experience more daytime sleepiness and lower energy so they lean on the stimulation of nicotine to help them get through the day. They may also snack more, and rely on caffeinated sodas to get by. Sugary sodas lead to weight gain and even diet sodas are bad for your teeth.
Sleep apnea can impact your ability to get exercise, too. People with sleep apnea have reduced lung capacity, which makes it harder for them to stay active.
Sleep apnea interferes with your body’s metabolism. This not only reduces your daily energy, it makes your body store more fat–and burn less of it in response to exercise–making you more likely to gain weight.
If you have sleep apnea, it can make it very hard to turn your life around and start living healthy. Getting sleep apnea treatment can be an essential part of making positive changes. To learn more about convenient, effective sleep apnea treatment in Philadelphia, please call (610) 272-0828 for an appointment with a sleep dentist at Dental Excellence of Blue Bell.