What is Atrial Fibrillation?

This is an irregular heart rhythm that happens in the upper chambers of the heart. The heart beats rapidly during periods and it causes people to experience shortness of breath.

What does snoring have to do with atrial fibrillation?

When you suffer from sleep apnea, it causes the oxygen levels in your blood to fall dangerously low during periods when you are asleep. When you have periods where you are not getting adequate oxygen levels your heart can start to speed up and have a fast rhythm in the upper chambers.

If the person already has atrial fibrillation then the sleep apnea, which is often indicated by snoring, can cause the atrial fibrillation to become far worse.

How is atrial fibrillation treated?

Medicine is given at first to regulate the rhythm of the heart. When a patient stops responding to these medications then the doctor may need to install pace makers that provide electrical shocks called cardioversions. There is also a surgical procedure known as a catheter ablation procedure that is known to help people with this disorder.

How can I tell if I have sleep apnea?

One way to determine the probability of your suffering from sleep apnea is to take the following quiz. Answer the questions truthfully.

  1. When you snore do people say that you can be heard through closed doors, or that your snoring can be heard over a conversation, or over that they have to turn the television up to cover up the sound of your snoring?
  2. Do you suffer from fatigue or sleepiness during the day?
  3. Has anyone ever told you that you stop breathing while you are sleeping?
  4. Do you suffer from hypertension?
  5. Is your body mass index more than 35?
  6. Are you older than 50?
  7. Is the circumference of your neck 16 inches or greater?
  8. Are you a male?

If you can answer yes to three of those questions, you may suffer from sleep apnea.

Are there other dangers related to sleep apnea?

Yes there are many other side effects for people who suffer from sleep apnea. Some of these side effects include:

  1. Always feeling fatigued even when you just wake up
  2. Having a hard time sleeping through the night
  3. Mental decline
  4. Stroke
  5. Heart failure
  6. Atrial fibrillation
  7. High blood pressure
  8. Losing the ability to concentrate
  9. Getting up frequently in the night to urinate

What to do if you think you have sleep apnea

You have to be properly evaluated for a sleep apnea condition, and then try the different sleep apnea treatments to help you retain proper oxygen levels throughout the night.

There are several different machines and surgical implants that are currently being used to help people who experience sleep apnea to get a better night of rest, and reduce their chances of serious complications.