By: Lauri Leadley, CCSH, RPSGT- Clinical Sleep Educator|Sleep Coach
This is a staggering number that should rightfully worry us. However, diabetes, in particular Type 2 diabetes, is a global epidemic today and a major health risk cutting across age demographics.
There are several conditions associated with Type 2 diabetes. These include hypertension, cardiovascular diseases, and obesity. However, there is another high-risk health disorder associated with Type 2 diabetes – obstructive sleep apnea (OSA).
OSA is a sleep disorder in which a person may experience either shallow breathing or pauses in their breathing while sleeping.
In a person suffering from OSA, the airway collapses temporarily, either because of the weakening of the neck muscles which hold the airway or when the tongue or other soft tissue fall back and block the airway.
Related Article – 6 Commonly Asked Questions about Sleep Apnea
Sleep disorders and diabetes go hand in hand. You may find your diabetes is keeping you from sleeping well at night because of excessive bathroom breaks. But the road goes both ways.
Poor sleeping habits can also put you at greater risk of diabetes. It is estimated that 86% of obese patients diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes had OSA. In patients with OSA, 40% were found to also have diabetes.
Although much more research needs to be done to find the exact link between the two conditions, several studies and research indicates there is a link between sleep apnea and diabetes.
In fact, the American Academy of Sleep Medicine advises that anyone diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes or hypertension should get screened for sleep apnea by a board-certified sleep medicine expert.
CPAP Therapy can Help Address OSA and Potentially Help in Better Diabetes Management
If you suffer from sleep apnea, there is good news for you – OSA can be treated. Continued positive airway pressure (CPAP) therapy has been found to be highly effective in treating OSA.
A CPAP machine is connected to a mask specially designed to fit a person’s face. The CPAP machine enables the patient to breath uninterrupted by increasing the air pressure in the throat. This prevents the airway from collapsing on inhalation.
Recent studies have shown that people who use a CPAP machine benefit from significant reductions in their blood sugar levels and blood pressure.
Consult with a Professional Sleep Coach if you suffer from Sleep Apnea
If you have been diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes and are suffering from OSA it is best that you consult with a professional sleep coach at the earliest. An effective treatment plan might involve CPAP therapy which should help you sleep better at night.
When you start sleeping better, it has a positive impact on your blood sugar levels. When your blood sugar levels are good, it also helps reduce the energy dips most diabetics suffer from.
As a sleep professional, the one issue that I come across most often with CPAP therapy is that patients tend to avoid using the machine because they find it uncomfortable or inconvenient.
My advice to such patients is to seriously reconsider. In patients with severe sleep apnea, the chances of blood sugar control being poor is higher. Meaning, not using the CPAP machine can adversely affect not just your sleep disorder, but your diabetes as well.
If you are not comfortable with your CPAP mask, speak about it with your sleep coach or medical provider. The mask can be easily re-fitted for a more comfortable wearing experience.
Valley Sleep Therapy – We Believe in Good Quality Sleep for All!
If you are looking for information about sleep devices and products or services for treating different sleep disorders, we would be more than happy to help.
You can visit us at Valley Sleep Therapy if you are shopping for CPAP, AutoPAP, and BiLevel CPAP machines. Browse our online CPAP supplies store or visit us in Mesa, AZ today!