What Increases Your Risk of Developing Sleep Apnea?

What Increases Your Risk of Developing Sleep Apnea?

Sleep apnea is a common sleep disorder that can be extremely dangerous if left untreated. Sleep apnea disrupts sleep cycles, leaving sufferers feeling excessive tiredness throughout the day. In addition, it can cause other health problems due to inadequate sleep. Keep reading to see what can increase your risk of developing sleep apnea


There are several reasons to quit smoking, and sleep apnea is one of those reasons. Non-smokers can still develop sleep apnea, but they are less likely to. Smoking can cause additional inflammation and increases fluid retention in the upper respiratory area. 

Gender and Age

Sleep apnea can occur at any age; however, it does become more common as you get older. For women, the chances of developing sleep apnea greatly increase after menopause. For men, the likelihood of sleep apnea is greater and rises with advancing age. 

Excess Weight

Obesity is one of the largest contributing factors to the development of sleep apnea, especially in women. Added fat in the neck and palate can make the airway much smaller, obstructing the flow of air.

Medical Conditions

There are several medical conditions that can affect your breathing while sleeping, which can increase your risk of sleep apnea. Some of these conditions are congestive heart failure, asthma, COPD, and type 2 diabetes. 

Alcohol and Sedatives 

Alcohol, and sedatives can greatly impact your risk of having sleep apnea. Any medication or substance that relaxes muscles will also relax the muscles in your throat, which can cause you to stop breathing throughout the night. 

Dr. Carson is a Diplomate of the American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine. Therefore, our office can offer screening for sleep apnea patients and will partner with your physician to develop a personalized treatment plan for you. To explore more about sleep apnea treatment in Tucson, call (520) 514-7203.