Does Sleep Apnea Treatment Improve Diabetes?
Up to one in four people with type 2 diabetes may also have obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), a condition that causes your breathing to pause over and over as you sleep. OSA makes blood-sugar control more difficult and may raise your risk for high blood pressure and heart disease.
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Researchers found that treating sleep apnea with continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) not only helped people sleep better, but it also improved their blood sugar (glucose) levels, which can reduce the risk of complications from diabetes, such as heart and kidney disease.
Obstructive sleep apnea is a common sleep disorder that disrupts healthy sleeping patterns and affects up to 4% of men and 2% of women. The condition causes a person’s breathing to become irregular or briefly stop as the result of a collapsed airway. CPAP is a device with a mask and hose which is hooked to the patient. The device forces air into the patient and keeps the airway open.
Researchers say in light of the high prevalence of sleep apnea and obesity in people with diabetes, these results suggest that the treatment of sleep apnea can have important health benefits. They say people with diabetes who have symptoms of sleep apnea, such as excessive daytime sleepiness and loud, persistent snoring, should be evaluated for sleep apnea and seek treatment for the sleep disorder.