I Am Having Trouble Falling Asleep On Cpap
If your pressure feels overwhelming at the beginning of the night, your machine may have a feature called ramp which can be set to start your pressure at a lower setting and ramp up over a period of time. Call your cpap supplier to ask if your machine has this feature and if it is enabled for use.
Ways Cpap Users Can Manage Sinus Congestion
Youve been using your nasal or nasal pillow mask for several months and receiving the amazing benefits of CPAP therapy. Then one day, you run into a big problem. You catch a cold.
This is a dilemma most CPAP users will face at some point. How do you continue using your much-needed CPAP machine when you have a serious case of sinus congestion?
Fortunately, we have a number of tips and tricks that can help. Not only will you be able to make it through the dreaded cold and flu season without having to give up your CPAP therapy, you wont lose those sick days youve been saving up!
Here are six ways CPAP users can manage sinus congestion:
Clean The Cpap Regularly
Bacteria accumulation and contamination of the CPAP machine parts might be one of the leading causes of the therapy side effects. That is why it is essential to clean your CPAP machine and parts regularly.
The CPAP equipment should be cleaned after every use, which means that the majority of sleep apnea patients should be cleaning their CPAP devices every day.
You can clean your CPAP device using CPAP cleaners, or using products like cleaning brushes for the tubing, surface cleaners, and sprays, or cleaning wipes.
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Nasal Dryness With Cpap
Waking up with a dry nose or congestion is a commonly experienced CPAP side effect and usually indicates a lack of humidification. You may be wondering, Why am I congested from CPAP use?
Breathing in the continuous flow of air from your CPAP machine can easily dry out and irritate your nostrils and can occasionally even cause a nosebleed for some individuals. As a response, your nasal passages may be trying to create a barrier of protection by producing excess mucus, which can lead to equally-irritating nasal congestion.
Whether your nose is dry or full of mucus, a heated humidifier can add the moisture your nasal passages need to reduce or eliminate the irritation. Already using a heated humidifier? Try a higher humidification setting or add an insulated cover for your hose, heated tubing, or a soothing nasal spray to your care routine. Its important to correct this issue since dry, cracked, or bleeding nasal passages can make you susceptible to infection.
Here are a few tried and tested solutions for bringing relief to dry and irritated nasal passages:
If youre still experiencing issues after trying these recommendations, you may need to visit your ENT for guidance.
Consider Alternative Sleep Apnea Treatments
CPAP machines are not the only treatment options available for sleep apnea. If your CPAP machine is making you sick, you should consider oral appliance therapy. Oral appliance therapy is a non-invasive treatment that involves wearing a removable oral appliance when sleeping. Oral appliances help keep the airway clear during sleep, allowing for unobstructed breathing.
If you would like to learn more about sleep apnea oral appliances, contact New Jersey Sleep Apnea Solutions. We can provide you with more information about your oral appliance options and discuss if oral appliances are right for you.
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Why Is My Face Breaking Out Around My Nose
You may notice acne or pimples along the area where your mask is wornespecially if your skin is prone to breakoutsdue to your facial oils building up under your mask. You can minimize this reaction by washing your face each evening before applying your mask and by wiping down your mask each morning. If you are still experiencing breakouts, you may want to consider a nasal pillow mask since the design makes less direct contact with your skin. If you cant wear a nasal pillow mask due to mouth breathing, try to add a CPAP chin strap to your CPAP setup to encourage nasal breathing.
We also recommend keeping your mask clean, which may reduce or eliminate breakouts, with the following:
While uncommon, a silicone allergy may be contributing to your breakouts, so it may be worth having your healthcare provider test you for a silicone allergy. A gel or cloth mask may help you reduce acne from your CPAP mask if making a change to your cleaning routine doesnt fix things for you.
Common Cpap Side Effects
Although CPAP therapy is one of the most successful methods for treating and reducing the symptoms of sleep apnea, there are a host of CPAP side effects that may follow after constant use of sleep apnea equipment. If you wear a CPAP mask and use a CPAP machine, these issues might sound familiar to you.
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Cant Tolerate Forced Air
If youre like some patients, the pressurized air flow from a sleep apnea machine may be difficult to tolerate.
Many CPAP machines have a ramp feature, which works to gradually increase the air pressure as you fall asleep. If yours doesnt, or if this adjustment doesnt help, a different type of device could be the answer. A bilevel positive airway pressure machine provides more pressure as you inhale and less as you exhale, which can help make breathing easier.
Mask Fit And Adjustment Tips
Mask leak is one of the most common challenges for patients. To assure the best CPAP mask fit and adjustment, when retiring to sleep, sit on your bed and place mask on the head/face with straps loose. With machine turned on and air blowing, lay down with your head on the pillow in your normal sleeping position. Slowly tighten your mask straps just until you get a good seal, being careful not to needlessly over tighten. The final step is to seat your mask. After straps are adjusted, pull the mask out and away from your face and gently lay back on face. This allows the dual mask cushions to inflate which will assure the best seal possible and comfortable fit. Mask fit varies with sleeping position, so if you fit for side or stomach sleeping, you will need to readjust if you roll to your back. This is why many patients train themselves to sleep solely on side or stomach versus back sleeping which has a different mask fit.
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Proper Humidification Can Reduce Dryness That Enhances Nasal Irritation And Congestion
Most new CPAP machines come with a heated humidifier which gently adds moisture to the air that you breathe through your mask. Heated humidification is recommended for comfort for most patients, especially those in dry climates, over age 65 or taking medication that causes dry airways. Read more about humidification for CPAP here.
Nasal Congestion And Dry Nose
Nasal congestion and runny nose can occur with CPAP use. People undergoing CPAP therapy may also experience dry nose from the forced air flowing into the nose. The flow of dry air can lead to nosebleeds and crusting. Dry noses with CPAP use are particularly common in climates with cold weather or low humidity.
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Bloating And Gas From Swallowing Cpap Air
While not exclusive to CPAP, another side effect that can occur during therapy is Aerophagia, which is the discomfort, gas, or bloating thats caused by the accidental swallowing of air. While not overly common, CPAP Aerophagia can be a very uncomfortable experience. Here are a few things that may be causing it:
- Your Pressure Needs Adjusting: CPAP Aerophagia can be caused by either therapy pressure that is too high or too low. Its easy to accidentally ingest too much air when your pressure is too high, but if its too low to adequately treat your apneas, you may end up just swallowing air in gulps when trying to breathe normally.
- Mouth Breathing: If you wear a nasal or nasal pillow mask but dont use a chinstrap, your mouth may be falling open while you sleep. This lets air pressure escape through your mouth, which can cause you to begin unconsciously gasping for air and swallowing some in the process. This can be remedied by wearing a CPAP chinstrap.
- Exhalation Pressure Is Too High: If youre having difficulty exhaling against your therapy pressure, it may cause an anxious choking episode where you begin to hyperventilate, which is when you begin quickly swallowing air. Most machines have a feature that may be referred to as Expiratory Pressure Relief , which reduces the incoming pressure during exhalation for a more natural breathing pattern. Consult your user manual to see if this is an option for your machine.
Is There A Connection Between Sinusitis And Sleep Apnea
Medical research has shown that just because you are diagnosed with sleep apnea does not mean you will automatically develop sinusitis and vice versa. There is a slight increase that an individual with sleep apnea will also develop sinusitis, but the research is fuzzy on a clear link between the two.
A 2016 study is one of the most often cited scholarly articles on the topic, but it doesnt offer conclusive answers. Researchers followed 971 people with OSA, as well as 4,855 people not diagnosed with OSA, for five years. The researchers reported fewer than seven percent of people with OSA were later diagnosed with sinusitis. Among those without OSA, only two percent developed sinusitis, therefore there is no conclusive evidence linking the two.
A year later, doctors from Northwestern University and Rush University Medical Center studied general sleep disruptions in individuals with chronic rhinosinusitis. They noticed in preparation for their research that the medical community had not yet found any consistent links between the two.
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How Do I Avoid Red Marks
Similar to nasal sores and other skin irritations, red marks can be caused by over-tightening your CPAP mask. Your mask should only be tightened enough to create a secure seal. To avoid over-tightening your mask, work clockwise to make small adjustments to the headgear until the mask is secure but not overly tight. Cleaning your mask cushion, nasal pillows, and nasal prongs daily helps you to achieve a better seal as well.
If you know your mask fits, its not time for any replacements, and you are routinely cleaning it, consider adding mask strap padsa soft covering for your headgear strapsto your CPAP set-up.
Red marks from your CPAP mask can be upsetting first thing in the morning, but there are several products that are designed to target and minimize red marks and other skin irritation, including:
Why Am I Getting Sores Inside My Nose
Wearing nasal pillows or nasal prong devices that are too big or the wrong shape for your nose can cause sores inside your nostrils.
Switching to a nasal mask with a cradle designsuch as the AirFit N30imay bring relief to your irritated nostrils due to its curved nasal cradle design, which hugs the base of your nose instead of going inside your nose. Additionally, sores inside the nose can be caused by the CPAP air drying out the mucous membrane. Adding moisture from a heated humidifier is your best solution, but many people with irritated nostrils find relief by treating their sores with a moisturizer or coconut oil during the daytime.
While you may be tempted to use a lubricant such as Vaseline to get relief, its important to know that it may begin to break down your mask cushion. This can compromise your seal and require you to replace your equipment sooner than necessary, so use it sparingly or not at all. Youll also want to avoid oil-based moisturizers, scented products, and soaps with lanolin, as your seal will become easily compromised.
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A Properly Fitting Mask
First, if your mask isn’t fitting right, it might not create a strong enough seal against your face, allowing moisture to escape. Work with your sleep doctor to ensure proper fit. You might also consider using a different type of mask, such as a mask that covers your mouth as well as your nose. Finally, a RemZzzs® Mask Liner will help create a stronger, more comfortable seal no matter what type of mask you’re using.
Chest Pain And Cardiac Arrhythmias
Chest pain is one of the most common occurrences in patients receiving CPAP therapy. One case report shows that some sleep apnea patients have coronary artery disease, heart block, or chest pain. Obstructive sleep apnea seems to have caused such issues due to transient nocturnal hypoxia or oxygen saturation known to occur in sleep apnea patients.
Furthermore, the case report stated that chest pain and cardiac arrhythmias tend to occur in sleep apnea patients who receive CPAP therapy but are also obese.
In sleep apnea patients that have a BMI of 30 and higher, the chance of cardiac issues is significantly higher than in sleep apnea patients with a normal BMI.
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Complications Of Using Cpap Breathing
CPAP, or continuous positive airway pressure, is a relatively safe and effective treatment for sleep apnea and certain other breathing problems, according to the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute. A CPAP machine blows a steady stream of air into a mask that the patient wears over the mouth and nose. Because the air is under a small amount of pressure it prevents the airway from collapsing or blocking airflow to the lungs. While the complications of CPAP are rarely serious, they can be annoying.
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Air In Tummy Painful Stomach Bloating And Gas
The medical term for this common CPAP issue is aerophagia. It occurs when the air delivered by your CPAP enters the esophagus and stomach rather than the lungs. It can occur when your CPAP pressure is set too low or too high. It can also occur if you are a mouth breather but not wearing a full face mask. Consult your physician if the problem is chronic and persistent.
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Do You Need A Cpap Sanitizer
It is not necessary to spend hundreds of dollars on a specialized CPAP sanitizer, such as the SoClean unit that retails for $299. There is no evidence that these cleaners reduce the risk of infection.
Though it might make it easier to keep things clean on a daily basis, the cost likely outweighs any potential benefit. Save your money and avoid this expenditure. Instead, commit yourself to cleaning your equipment with soap and hot water at least weekly.
How Is Obstructive Sleep Apnea Related To Sinus Problems
Obstructive sleep apnea is a sleep disorder that prevents breathing due to an obstruction or blocked airway. Sinusitis affects the nasal passages, making it difficult to breathe through the nose. While no significant evidence suggests that sleep apnea and sinusitis are causally related, a patient diagnosed with both may have difficulty sleeping, even with CPAP therapy.
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Why Cant I Tolerate My Cpap
- Posted on: Mar 12 2019
- View all 2 responses
If you have been diagnosed with sleep apnea, there is a good chance you have been prescribed a CPAP machine. You may try and try but you just cant wear it. You may try switching masks, try different CPAP machines, use chin straps, try sleeping pills, program a ramp up in pressure, all to no avail.
How Do I Get Rid Of My Congestion
For many sleep apnea patients, congestion is a regular occurrence, not to mention an annoyance. More often than not, it is caused when you dont have sufficient humidification with your positive airway pressure therapy. But, you should always consult with your health care provider about your treatment. They can help you determine if there are any underlying issues that need to be treated.
Tips For Preventing Cpap Side Effects
Unwanted CPAP side effects can be discouraging, but dont give up on your sleep apnea treatment just yet. The following recommendations may reduce or eliminate some of the issues youre experiencing:
- Ensure You Have the Proper Mask Fit
- Double-Check That Your Headgear Straps Are Secured
- Clean Your CPAP Equipment Regularly
- Avoid Using Oil-Based Cleaning Products
- Add Humidification or Mask Liners
- Consider Sinus Medication or Heated Tubing
- Use Water-Soluble Saline Gel on Nostrils
You may also find it helpful to wear your CPAP mask during the day while fully awake to get more comfortable wearing it. You should use this time to also make any adjustments to your mask fit and seal quality to reduce the overall irritation and the number of sores you may experience.
Fungal And Mold Risks
The CPAP has some “creature features” to make it more comfortable to use. In particular, the heated humidifier and heated tubing may make the air more warm and moist. This decreases mouth and nose dryness.
However, there are organisms that also love a warm, humid environment. In particular, fungus, yeast, and mold would love to hang out in such a place. Dangerous molds could also establish themselves in the equipment. These organisms could potentially be harmful to you.
This may lead to irritation of the airways and lungs, contributing to cough or possibly even an infection like bronchitis, pneumonia, or inflammation of the lungs called pneumonitis. The air pressure may blow these organisms directly into your lungs. It sounds scary!
If your CPAP is not kept clean and excess moisture is allowed to sit in the tubing or humidifier, you might be at risk of developing a fungal or yeast colonization.
Take a deep breath. Large studies have not been performed, and cases of this occurring have not been reported in the literature. The risk is likely extremely low. The use of a humidifier and adequate hygiene seems to reduce these risks.
If water is left in the device for an extended period of time without use, mold is more likely to form. Therefore, the device should not be stored with water left in it, especially in an environment that might promote such growth .
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