Heart Failure and Sleep Problems

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Topic Overview

Many people with heart failure have trouble sleeping. You may have insomnia because of trouble breathing or because of depression or anxiety.

Some people with heart failure have sleep apnea, which means they stop breathing for 10 seconds or longer several times a night. This reduces the amount of oxygen their body gets.

Untreated sleep apnea can lead to health problems or make problems that you already have worse. It can make fluid build-up worse for people who have heart failure.

Sleep apnea may make you snore loudly and not sleep well, so you may be very tired during the day.

Sleep apnea can be treated with lifestyle changes, continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP), or devices you wear in your mouth or on your nose to keep your airways open. In some cases, surgery can help.

Talk to your doctor if you have trouble sleeping or think you may have sleep apnea.

Sleep Apnea: Should I Have a Sleep Study?

You can do some things at home to help yourself get a good night's sleep.

Insomnia: Improving Your Sleep

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Related Information


ByHealthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer Rakesh K. Pai, MD, FACC - Cardiology, Electrophysiology
Specialist Medical Reviewer Stephen Fort, MD, MRCP, FRCPC - Interventional Cardiology

Current as ofFebruary 20, 2015