CPAP Intolerance

Are You CPAP Intolerant?

If you have been diagnosed with Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) you likely have used a CPAP machine. But do you know if you have CPAP intolerance?


What is CPAP Intolerance?

CPAP (short for Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) machines are the standard treatment for OSA. When a CPAP is used properly, it can effectively treat OSA. However, not everyone is treatable via CPAP machine. A few symptoms that may indicate CPAP intolerance are:

  • Feeling claustrophobic when wearing a mask
  • Dry throat and nose upon waking
  • Skin irritation from a mask
  • Lack of sleep due to restricted movement
  • Latex allergies
  • Mask leaking or lack of properly fitted mask

People suffering from CPAP intolerance never fully adjust to their machine and often do not use it consistently and for the recommended length of time. Essentially, people who are CPAP intolerant are going without treatment most of the time.

Alternative Treatment Options

Though a CPAP is the most common treatment for OSA, there are other non-surgical options available.

Oral Sleep Appliance
For some, an oral sleep appliance can eliminate the need for a CPAP or surgery. However, one size does not fit all. To find the proper fit for you, you will need it properly calibrated to your specific needs by a dental sleep specialist.

Lifestyle Adjustment
Some who suffer from mild OSA will be able to lose weight, change sleeping positions, or reduce alcohol consumption in the evenings in order to reduce symptoms of sleep apnea.

Sleep apnea surgery is necessary and effective for some but can pose significant risks. These risks, in addition to the length of recovery time and the pain involved, are all reasons why surgery is recommended as a last resort.

Why Treatment is Important

OSA is dangerous for a number of reasons. Heart health, psychological health, workplace safety, and driving safety can all be affected by sleep apnea. That is why, if you have been diagnosed with OSA, it is highly recommended that you find the proper treatment for you.

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