What Sleep Apnea Means for High Blood Pressure?


When it comes to knowing the “health numbers,” blood pressure values are of utmost importance and more important is to keep them under control.  

Also known as hypertension, blood pressure is affecting millions of people, including adults says recent researches and hence doctors are looking for an effective method to treat it. High Blood Pressure can also lead to heart attack, stroke, kidney failure, damaged blood vessels, weakening of blood vessel walls etc.

What is blood pressure?

In biological terms, blood pressure is the measure of force exerted on the arteries by the flow of blood pumped from the heart. It is measured as two numbers, Systolic pressure- the pressure when heart contracts and pushes the blood and Diastolic pressure, the period when heart relaxes between beats.


  • When systolic pressure is below 120 and diastolic pressure is below 80, it is Normal Blood pressure.
  • Symptoms of High Blood Pressure are confirmed when systolic pressure is 140 or higher and diastolic pressure is 90 or higher.


Symptoms of High Blood Pressure

Most of the people with high diastolic and systolic pressure would not experience any symptoms of High blood pressure, even if the levels are dangerously high. Few people might experience, headaches, nose bleeding, shortness of breath etc., however, these signs usually occur when High Blood Pressure reaches a live-threatening stage.  

Blood Pressure and Sleep apnea

About half of the patients who have Obstructive sleep apnea, have High blood Pressure and half of the patients who have hypertension have Obstructive sleep apnea. Certain evidences imply that Blood pressure and Sleep apnea both are co-related.

In patients with high blood pressure, there are symptoms of Sleep apnea also, even though most of the cases goes unnoticed, if the patient seeks check up for the sleep disorder (with hypertension), he/she would be concerned with three sleep related aspects- snoring, excessive sleepiness during the day and occurrences of apneic-hypopneic episodes. On contrary to this, improvement in the quality of sleep will dramatically eliminate day time sleepiness, which has detrimental effects on the general functioning and high blood pressure. This will also decrease the likelihood of cardiovascular complications.

High Blood Pressure Treatment

High Blood pressure treatment should be done on time either by making lifestyle changes or in severe cases, by taking prescribed medicines and proper medical care. Your ultimate goal should be to keep your blood pressure below 140/90 mmHg.

Measure your Blood Pressure- Don’t ignore, if you get any chance to get your blood pressure checked. You may also use Home blood pressure device.

Act even if you have readings near to high blood pressure- This might signal getting another couple of readings in the next few weeks. Arrange an appointment with your doctor soon if you have minor symptoms of high blood pressure.

Go for Lifestyle changes- Our lifestyle is what leads to high blood pressure and obviously changes in it will help control it. Do more exercises, lose more pounds, minimize stress and quit smoke. 

Check for any sleep disorder- In case of severe High Blood Pressure, you should check for the possibility of any sleep disorder, such as sleep apnea. In case your doctor diagnoses you for Sleep apnea, you may go for CPA treatment for sleep apnea.

Reason for high Blood Pressure cannot be précised; but can be avoided by adopting a good quality lifestyle, by checking for the possibility of any sleep disorder like sleep apnea that might trigger high blood pressure later on and by regularly measuring your blood pressure readings. Treatment of sleep apnea will ensure quality sleep that will ultimately eliminate day time sleepiness, snoring and bring progress in high blood pressure.    

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