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Sleepless in America-Men & Women’s sleep is out of sync

December 2nd, 2014 Raquel Rothe

http://www.cbsnews.com/videos/men-and-women-have-separate-sleep-clocks/

Great link to watch this video from CBS News

Sleep apnea may hold hidden dangers for women

March 12th, 2014 Raquel Rothe

Sleep apnea may hold hidden dangers for women

Monday 28 October 2013 – 3am PST

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Sleep apnea may hold hidden dangers for women

A new study on sleep apnea reveals there could be some hidden dangers – particularly for women who have the condition – where breathing is interrupted during sleep. Women with sleep apnea may appear healthy, but they have subtle symptoms so their sleep problem is often misdiagnosed.

Now, new research, led by the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) School of Nursing, shows that the body’s autonomic responses, which normally control blood pressure, heart rate, sweating and other basic functions, are not as strong in people with obstructive sleep apnea, and even less so in women.

Obstructive sleep apnea is a serious condition that happens when the person is asleep, sometimes hundreds of times a night. When it occurs, blood oxygen drops and eventually damages many cells of the body.

There are over 20 million adult Americans living with the condition, note the researchers, who explain that it is linked with several serious health problems and also early death.

Women are much less likely to be diagnosed with obstructive sleep apnea than men.

Lead researcher Dr. Paul Macey says:

“We now know that sleep apnea is a precursor to bigger health issues. And for women in particular, the results could be deadly.”

Early detection and intervention needed

Dr. Macey and his colleagues describe their work in a recent online issue of PLOS ONE.

For their study, the team recruited 94 adult men and women, comprising 37 newly diagnosed, untreated obstructive sleep (OSA) patients and 57 healthy volunteers to act as controls.

The three groups had their heart rates measured as they went through three different physical challenges:

  • The Valsalva maneuver – where they had to breathe out hard while keeping the mouth closed
  • A hand-grip challenge – where they had to just squeeze hard with one hand
  • A cold pressor challenge – where the right foot is inserted into near-freezing water for a minute.

The team notes the main results:

“Heart rate responses showed lower amplitude, delayed onset and slower rate changes in OSA patients over healthy controls, and impairments may be more pronounced in females.”

Dr. Macey adds:

“This may mean that women are more likely to develop symptoms of heart disease, as well as other consequences of poor adaptation to daily physical tasks. Early detection and treatment may be needed to protect against damage to the brain and other organs.”

The team now intends to investigate if the usual treatments for OSA, such as continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP), help to improve the autonomic responses.

CPAP is where a machine helps the OSA patient breathe more easily while asleep.

Funds from the National Institutes of Health and the National Institute of Nursing Research helped finance the study.

In another study published recently, researchers from Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, MA, found that sleep apnea is linked to early sign of heart failure.

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Sleep apnea may hold hidden dangers for women

November 5th, 2013 Raquel Rothe

A new study on sleep apnea reveals there could be some hidden dangers – particularly for women who have the condition – where breathing is interrupted during sleep. Women with sleep apnea may appear healthy, but they have subtle symptoms so their sleep problem is often misdiagnosed.

Now, new research, led by the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) School of Nursing, shows that the body’s autonomic responses, which normally control blood pressure, heart rate, sweating and other basic functions, are not as strong in people with obstructive sleep apnea, and even less so in women.

Obstructive sleep apnea is a serious condition that happens when the person is asleep, sometimes hundreds of times a night. When it occurs, blood oxygen drops and eventually damages many cells of the body.

There are over 20 million adult Americans living with the condition, note the researchers, who explain that it is linked with several serious health problems and also early death.

Women are much less likely to be diagnosed with obstructive sleep apnea than men.

Lead researcher Dr. Paul Macey says:

“We now know that sleep apnea is a precursor to bigger health issues. And for women in particular, the results could be deadly.”

Early detection and intervention needed

Dr. Macey and his colleagues describe their work in a recent online issue of PLOS ONE.

For their study, the team recruited 94 adult men and women, comprising 37 newly diagnosed, untreated obstructive sleep (OSA) patients and 57 healthy volunteers to act as controls.

The three groups had their heart rates measured as they went through three different physical challenges:

  • The Valsalva maneuver – where they had to breathe out hard while keeping the mouth closed
  • A hand-grip challenge – where they had to just squeeze hard with one hand
  • A cold pressor challenge – where the right foot is inserted into near-freezing water for a minute.

The team notes the main results:

“Heart rate responses showed lower amplitude, delayed onset and slower rate changes in OSA patients over healthy controls, and impairments may be more pronounced in females.”

Dr. Macey adds:

“This may mean that women are more likely to develop symptoms of heart disease, as well as other consequences of poor adaptation to daily physical tasks. Early detection and treatment may be needed to protect against damage to the brain and other organs.”

The team now intends to investigate if the usual treatments for OSA, such as continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP), help to improve the autonomic responses.

CPAP is where a machine helps the OSA patient breathe more easily while asleep.

Funds from the National Institutes of Health and the National Institute of Nursing Research helped finance the study.

In another study published recently, researchers from Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, MA, found that sleep apnea is linked to early sign of heart failure.

Written by Catharine Paddock PhD

Oh my Hot Flashes! The “Golden” Years of Insomnia?

June 30th, 2010 admin

More than 60% of post-menopausal women report insomnia symptoms. In fact, in their lifetimes, women report the most problems with their sleep during perimenopause and post-menopause. Most sleep problems are caused by hot flashes, mood disorders, insomnia and sleep-disordered breathing. Snoring, accompanied by pauses or gasps in breathing, are signs of a more serious sleep disorder, obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). An estimated 18 million Americans have sleep apnea, including one in four over 65. While sleep apnea is more common in men, its prevalence in women increases after age 50. Because being overweight is a risk factor for sleep apnea, the increase in abdominal fat during menopause may be one reason menopausal are 3.5 times as likely to get this sleep disorder. Some attribute the hormonal changes, such as the decrease in progesterone, as a trigger for apnea. As sleep apnea is associated with high blood pressure and stroke, it is important to speak to your doctor if you are exhibiting symptoms.

Changing and decreasing levels of estrogen cause many menopausal symptoms including hot flashes, which are unexpected feelings of heat all over the body accompanied by sweating. They usually begin around the face and spread to the chest affecting 75-85% of women around menopause. Prior to the hot flash, body temperature rises and is accompanied by an awakening. Hot flashes last an average of 3 minutes leading to decreased sleep efficiency. Most women experience these symptoms for one year, but about 25% have hot flashes for five years. While total sleep time may not suffer, sleep quality does. Hot flashes may interrupt sleep and frequent awakenings cause next-day fatigue. If you are experiencing these symptoms please contact your healthcare professional to seek advice.

Sleep is the golden chain that ties health and our bodies together. ~Thomas Dekker

Women and Sleep

June 1st, 2010 admin

Yes ladies we ALL have sleep issues at one time or another, typically this is due to our hormone changes during the span of our lifetime. Wow, what a span we have! What symptoms, sign or diseases should prompt a woman tor her doctor to consider that she might need to have a sleep evaluation? Women may experience daytime fatigue, lack of energy or excessive sleepiness despite getting an adequate amount of sleep (usually 7-8 hours) at night. They may notice headaches when they first awaken. Their bed partner may report that they have heavy snoring, or that they have breathing pauses during their sleep and make choking sounds sometimes with these. Women themselves may notice that they have frequent unexplained awakenings at night, awaken frequently to urinate, or sometimes awaken from sleep at night feeling as if they are gasping or choking. These things should be addressed with a healthcare professional.

We also know that women’s risk for sleep apnea increases as they transition through menopause, so that post menopausal women are up to three times more likely to have OSA (obstructive sleep apnea) compared to premenopausal women. Also women who are overweight or obese are at greater risk for having sleep apnea. Women (or men) who have blood pressure that is difficult to control despite taking medication and have some of these symptoms may also wish to be evaluated for sleep apnea, as diagnosis and treatment of OSA can help with blood pressure for control.

Common complaints by women are difficulty maintaining sleep, un-refreshing sleep, chronic fatigue, lack of energy, snoring, frequent nighttime urination, awakening gasping, daytime sleepiness, awakening with a headache, or edema (swelling) of the feet. The “classic” symptoms are snoring, witnessed apneas (pauses in breathing), and daytime sleepiness, but women may not experience these things. Weight gain, depression, waking up gasping for breath, hypertension, and dry mouth in the morning may be tip-offs for women that may need a sleep evaluation. Finally, women who are obese, pregnant women, and post-menopausal women all have a greater risk of OSA (obstructive sleep apnea). Women with the endocrine disorder, polycystic ovary syndrome, are also more likely to have sleep apnea even after controlling weight and should seek a healthcare professional.

A good laugh and a long sleep are the best cures in the doctor’s book. ~Irish Proverb