The First Warning Sign of a ‘Medicalized Middle Age’
Snoring Could Be the First Warning Sign of a ‘Medicalized Middle Age’
‘According to an article that was recently published on afr.com, the path to a ‘medicalized middle age’ generally begins about the age of 39 – and snoring is one of the first signs.
If you are around the age of 40 and have already developed a snoring problem, then you might want to think very seriously about doing something about it!
Here is the problem. Australian researchers have now charted the journey into chronic illness that typically begins in the mid-life period (around 40 or so).
The four steps to this journey are as follows.
Information! It generally begins with snoring – which occurs somewhere around the age of 40. It then progresses to signs of high blood pressure, somewhere around the age of 43. By the time people on this ‘slippery slope’ reach 52, they are either suffering from or in the beginning stages of diabetes.
And of course, by the age of 54, they are beginning to show symptoms of heart disease.
But can anything be done to stop this progression? Is it possible that treating snoring could help to minimize this progression into what doctors are calling a ‘medicalized middle age’?
One study, which took place under the supervision of specialists from the Alfred Hospital in Melbourne, discovered that a chronological timeline could be traced that lead from snoring to other health problems. They noticed that this progression, or ‘quadrella’, as they called it, generally followed a clear pattern.
First, there was snoring – then hypertension, then diabetes – and last but certainly not least, came heart disease.
In the study, some factors were obviously unaccounted for. Obesity, for example, might play a more active role in this progression than scientists currently believe. But the consistency of the progression certainly seemed to indicate that more studies need to be done to figure out whether or not snoring might have more to do with all of this than anyone previously suspected.
What Does This Mean for Current Snorers?
This is simply another indication that snoring is doing a number on people’s health. Getting enough sleep is a very important part of general health and well-being – and when we don’t get enough rest, our health suffers.
Plus, while snoring is definitely a big problem, it’s important to remember that obstructive sleep apnea is even worse! If you believe that you have a snoring or a sleep apnea problem, then it would definitely be in your best interest to make finding a remedy a priority!
Besides – snoring doesn’t just affect the person with the problem. Bed partners, spouses, roommates, and anyone else who might be sleeping in close proximity will likely suffer as well!
Don’t Brush Aside Your Snoring Habit… Find a Solution
A quote by Prism Respiratory Therapy Manager Gennie Anderson says pretty much everything that needs to be said about OSA…
“What people don’t realize is that treating obstructive sleep apnea and being compliant with positive airway pressure therapy prevents more than just sleep apnea. It prevents future medical problems from other diseases such as heart failure.”
Figuring out whether or not you are predisposed to sleep apnea can also help. As it turns out, there are several factors that can increase your odds of suffering from the condition. Being overweight, being 50 years of age or older, having a neck circumference of more than 16 inches, and being male are all factors that could make you even more susceptible to OSA.
If your partner has observed you snoring loudly in your sleep, you feel unusually fatigued or tired during the day on a regular basis, and/or you find yourself with higher-than-normal blood pressure readings, there is a good chance that sleep apnea has already started to affect you – which means that it is definitely time to start figuring out how to stop it.
A visit to your doctor is a great first-course of action, as a sleep study can help to determine if you are just snoring or truly dealing with obstructive sleep apnea. There are a lot of treatment options out there for both though – so don’t settle for just living with the problem when you could be well on your way to figuring out a remedy.