Most of us look forward to the comfort of our bed after a long day and sinking into a deep sleep, ready to face the next morning refreshed and energized. But sleep apnea makes that simple pleasure difficult. For people that suffer from sleep apnea, trying to sleep can be a source of dread rather than excitement.
Not only can a restless night of trying to sleep leave you drained and unhappy the next day, it can have the same effect on your partner. In a study of over 60 couples, researchers found that lack of sleep can cause dissonance between partners. This can lead to more conflict, irritability, and stress.
Sleepless Nights Aren’t Fun for Anyone
According to Dr. Rosalind Cartwright, founder of the Sleep Disorders Center at Rush, couples with one partner who snores or suffers from sleep apnea are known to have high divorce rates. Snoring makes sleeping peacefully extremely difficult and sometimes even impossible. Left untreated, it can be a routine that becomes a source of dread for your sleep partner.
Sleep apnea is a condition that can damage intimacy with your sleep partner. In addition to waking up grumpy and sleep deprived the day after a night of snoring, this lack of sleep directly affects your testosterone levels — which means decreased sex drive. A study in 2009 found that up to 70 percent of men who suffer from sleep apnea also suffer from erectile dysfunction.
This affects both genders and can be extremely frustrating, but there are ways to manage symptoms of sleep apnea so that your relationship does not fall victim to statistics.
Start With a Sleep Study
Getting a sleep study and seeking treatment can make a world of difference for your relationship. A sleep study will determine if you have sleep apnea so you can get the right treatment if necessary.
Don’t let your worry about CPAP machines deter you — there are many options for relief available that are more comfortable for both you and your loved one.
You’re Both in This Together
If you are noticing your partner having trouble sleeping, or you have been hearing reports about disrupting your partner’s sleep with loud snoring, it’s worth it to seek help.
In many cases, people are unaware that they have sleep apnea at all, and it takes a partner to speak up – or sometimes, a few elbows to the arm at night. In fact, 80 percent – that’s eight out of 10 cases – go undiagnosed.
Having a partner that speaks up, or being the one to speak up, can save your relationship and your health. Sleep apnea can have serious health effects, such as high blood pressure, stroke, diabetes, and even heart attacks. With a loved one in your life, you want to stay around as long as possible — so seeking treatment is crucial.
Staying open and honest with each other about how you feel and what it’s like to deal with sleep apnea can strengthen your relationship. With proper care, treatment and support, you can stop sleep apnea from interfering with what’s most important in life.
Main Line Snoring Knows How to Help
Our team wants you to have the best support in fighting for your relationship and your health. For over 30 years, we’ve been helping patients return to a life that’s comfortable, energized, and passionate. Call (610) 527-6704 today for your free consultation – your first step to a lifelong solution.