Is Sleep Apnea Hereditary?

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Are you tired all day despite getting enough hours of shut-eye? Do you find yourself snoring loudly throughout the night? These could be signs of sleep apnea. Millions of people have this sleep disorder globally, and researchers are still learning more about how it works. However, many of our patients want to know whether sleep apnea is hereditary.

In this guide, Dr. Avi Ishaaya explores the potential causes of sleep apnea and how genetics may play a role. If you are worried about your sleep health and want to book a consultation in Los Angeles, CA, contact Dr. Avi Ishaaya Centers. We offer comprehensive sleep testing to gain a better understanding of your condition.

The basics of sleep apnea

Sleep apnea is serious because it affects the way you breathe while sleeping. It causes breathing to stop and start unexpectedly. Symptoms include loud snoring, gasping for air during sleep, and feeling tired during the day. Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), central sleep apnea (CSA), and mixed sleep apnea are the three primary forms of sleep apnea.

The risk factors of sleep apnea

Anyone can have sleep apnea, but some factors increase your risk:

  • Being overweight: Too much fat around the neck can obstruct the airways and make it more challenging to breathe.
  • The structure of the nasal passageways: Some people have naturally smaller airways, which prevents them from breathing properly.
  • Broken nose: Trauma to the nose or nasal passageways can cause a deviation in the septum (the cartilage separating the nostrils). This deviation can make breathing more difficult.
  • Cigarette use: Smoking can cause inflammation and swelling in the airways. People who smoke are more likely to develop sleep apnea in addition to other respiratory disorders.
  • Anyone with these risk factors should pay close attention to their sleep health. If you experience any unwanted symptoms in Los Angeles, CA, call Dr. Avi Ishaaya Centers for an assessment.

Is sleep apnea hereditary?

The exact cause of sleep apnea may be unknown in some people. Research suggests that genetics may be a contributing factor. Studies have found that people with close family members who suffer from sleep apnea are more likely to develop it themselves. This is because genetic traits such as having a narrow airway or enlarged tonsils can trigger snoring.

It's important to note that while genetics can increase your risk, it's not the only factor. Environmental and lifestyle factors also play a big role. For example, obesity and smoking can worsen signs of sleep apnea if you have a genetic predisposition.

Managing sleep apnea

If you were diagnosed with sleep apnea, there are various options available to help manage the condition. Dr. Ishaaya offers sleep testing in our fully accredited sleep lab to provide an accurate diagnosis and create a custom treatment plan. This includes simple lifestyle changes such as weight loss and quitting smoking. You may also need help from positive airway pressure ( PAP) therapy or automatic positive airway pressure (APAP) devices.

Discover your options for sleep apnea

Dr. Avi Ishaaya understands that signs of sleep apnea can significantly impact your life, which is why we are committed to providing quality care and support to improve your sleep health. Don't let this condition go untreated. Contact Dr. Avi Ishaaya Centers for a consultation or sleep testing in Los Angeles, CA. Together, we can help find the best possible solution and help you get the rest you deserve.

* All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.