Heart Attack Prevention Through Better Sleep

You may already know that you can reduce your risk of suffering a heart attack by exercising regularly, making healthy dietary choices, and avoiding smoking. But did you know that the amount of sleep you get each night can also affect your heart health? Cardiology research suggests that people who experience sleep deprivation have an increased risk of dying from heart disease and stroke. Sleep apnea, a serious type of sleep disorder, is also a significant risk factor of cardiovascular disease. To manage your cardiology risk factors, you can consider Los Robles Hospital and Medical Center to be your partner in wellness.

Understanding the Link Between Sleep and Heart Health

The connection between poor sleep duration and an increased risk of heart attack is complex and multifaceted. Chronic sleep deprivation is associated with an increased risk of obesity due to hormonal imbalances. In turn, obesity can contribute to the conditions that set the stage for a heart attack. Additionally, individuals with insomnia may not get the long stretches of deep sleep that the body needs to lower blood pressure and heart rate. This places excess stress on the heart. Furthermore, some people have sleep apnea. This sleep disorder causes the patient to cease breathing while asleep. The brain senses the lack of oxygen and rouses the individual from sleep. A person with sleep apnea may cycle through periods of waking and sleeping dozens of times each night. As a result, sleep apnea increases the risk of high blood pressure, arrhythmia, and other heart problems.

Improving Your Quality and Duration of Sleep

If you suspect you may have a sleep disorder, you might consider talking to your physician about your treatment options. For some people, lifestyle changes are sufficient to get a good night’s sleep. Others may need medical intervention. To increase your chances of getting enough restful sleep, consider limiting caffeine, establishing a regular sleep/wake schedule, and setting a comfortable temperature in your bedroom.

Prevention is always preferable, but if you do suffer a heart attack, the cardiology team at Los Robles Hospital and Medical Center will make every effort to improve your outcome. From exceptional emergency room services to preventive and interventional cardiology, you’ll find comprehensive medical care at our hospital in Thousand Oaks. If you would like to speak with a registered nurse, you can call our Consult-A-Nurse line at (877) 888-5746.

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