Most people with sleep apnea don’t realize they have it. That’s because the condition itself strikes during sleep. And many of the symptoms of sleep apnea may not be identified as symptoms of sleep apnea. They are often mistaken for something else, such as the effects of old age.
But don’t be fooled. Sleep apnea is a serious condition that can dramatically impact your health. And, unlike old age, sleep apnea can be treated. If you get your sleep apnea treated, you may find yourself feeling suddenly years younger.
Signs of Aging or Sleep Apnea
It is normal to feel more tired as you get older. However, it’s not normal for you to feel exhausted all day, nor is it normal for you to constantly feel like you need a nap in the middle of the day. Even if you’re retired and can allow yourself to take that nap, it may not be good for your health.
If you are having memory problems, it shouldn’t be dismissed as just a product of getting older. Sleep apnea can significantly impact your memory, and it can also increase your risk for early onset dementia.
High blood pressure is a common illness as we get older. About a third of all American adults have high blood pressure. However, people with sleep apnea may find that their blood pressure doesn’t respond to medications and other treatments. High blood pressure is a precursor of other serious heart risks, such as heart attack, stroke, and more.
Some people find that they don’t have interest in their former hobbies or may lack energy to pursue them. Men might expect that their sexual desire and performance will decline with age. But both of these effects may actually be related to sleep apnea, which can diminish your energy and interest in former hobbies, as well as cause a lack of sexual desire and a decrease in performance.
Some people may think that weight gain comes with age. But weight gain can also be mediated by sleep apnea, which affects your metabolism, and may also encourage you to engage in more unhealthy snacking.
Talk to Your Doctor
In addition to these symptoms, you should be on the lookout for snoring. If you know you are a snorer and have any of the symptoms listed above, then it’s likely that you have sleep apnea. If that’s the case, sleep apnea treatment can not only help you live long enough to enjoy retirement, but give you the energy and ability to get the most out of these golden years.