Four Rare but Life Threatening Symptoms of Severe Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea is not life threatening; but severe sleep apnea is. Surprisingly, many do to recognize the condition as a medical problem, because many of its symptoms are part of and parcel of modern life. After all, loud snoring, restless sleep and daytime sleepiness can be the aftermath of a night spent out clubbing. That is exactly why the lesser known symptoms of severe obstructive sleep apnea are crucial when it comes to finding a lasting solution. Keep in mind that not all patients often portray what is considered as common symptoms. That said, schedule an appointment with your doctor as soon as you notice any of the following symptoms:

  • Frequent night urination
  • Morning headaches
  • Swollen legs
  • Memory Issues

treating severe sleep apnea

Frequent Night Urination

Of all the said symptoms, this one is evidently the most disturbing one. For a layman, it is hard to understand how the symptom is linked with sleep apnea. However, a brief look into it reveals how it has everything to do with severe sleep apnea. Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder associated with breathing challenges or if you may, difficulties. More often than not, it is caused by obstructed sleep disorder. Other times, it is caused by what doctors refer to as the central sleep disorder, which is an actual cessation of breathing. These two symptoms can be present at any given time, a condition known as mixed sleep apnea. This is where frequent night urination comes into the picture. Because regular awakening keep your body in a more alert, active state, your kidneys will go on creating waste at an unusual rate.

causes of severe sleep apnea symptoms

Morning Migraines

This is where women get confused and mistake the symptom for pregnancy. Chronic sleep apnea can easily cause morning headaches. The reason is simple. Hours of breathing difficulty at night simply starves your brain of enough oxygen. This then leads to headaches. Fortunately, these headaches have high chances of getting a treatment in the form of a breathing assistance method known as the continuous nasal positive airway pressure.

Swollen Legs

This is by far the most common among the symptoms of severe sleep apnea. It is a reliable pointer for chronic sleep apnea when linked with weight disorders like obesity. Again, the urgent need for oxygen is the chief cause. When your body is deprived of enough oxygen, blow flow concentrates on one area, on the central regions of your body. This goes an extra mile to protect your vital organs in such extreme times. Fluids then pool and result in sharp and painful aches on your legs. Like you may have already guessed, this can be a dangerous symptom. It can also indicate other life threatening conditions like respiratory or heart failure.

severe obstructive sleep apnea treatment

Memory Issues

This one goes down as a hard-to-notice symptom. Sleep apnea patients are often unaware of the condition as it happens when they’re asleep or rather trying to fall asleep. That is why it is easy to brush aside the symptom as a way of old age catching up with you. The symptom can however be as dangerous as swollen legs. How so? Research conducted by neuroscientists from UCLA indicates that sleep apnea patients lose mass, precisely in areas referred to as by doctors as mammilliary bodies. The structures are part of the human limbic system responsible for processing of recognition memory. In simple terms, it is a form of brain damage.

dental sleep apnea mouth guard


Be on the lookout for severe sleep apnea symptoms. Then seek immediate severe sleep apnea treatment as soon as you suspect the condition is responsible for many of your sleepless nights. Treating the condition at its toddler stages is often simple and less costly. You may only need a sleep apnea mouth guard, which is easy to put up with. The story can however be quite different should you ignore the said symptoms and give the condition the green light to progress to more complicated stages.