What are the risk factors for developing sleep apnea?

There are several risk factors associated with the development of sleep apnea. The primary risk factor is obesity or being overweight, as the excess fat deposits around the neck and throat can contribute to airway obstruction during sleep. Other risk factors include having a large neck circumference, being male (though sleep apnea can affect women as well), being over the age of 40, having a family history of sleep apnea, having a narrow airway or enlarged tonsils, smoking, alcohol or sedative use, and certain medical conditions like high blood pressure, diabetes, and heart disorders. It’s important to note that while these factors can increase the risk, sleep apnea can occur in individuals without any known risk factors.

If you suspect you may have sleep apnea or have concerns about your risk factors, it is advisable to consult with a SLEEP healthcare professional for further evaluation and guidance.

About the author 

Howard Hoffman

Hi! I'm Howard J. Hoffman, D.D.S. Actually, my patients and even friends call me Doc H. You may remember hearing me talking about conscious sedation on the radio, which earned me another nickname, "Miami's original sedation dentist." I am a member of the American Academy of Physiological Medicine and Dentistry (AAPMD).

Having practiced dentistry for over 45 years and working in Sleep Apnea since 1997.

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