Why Isn’t My CPAP Treating My Sleep Apnea?

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While snoring may be a source of amusement for some family members, if you’re the one snoring there’s nothing funny about it. All jokes aside, snoring can indicate that something more serious, sleep apnea, is going on. 

Sleep apnea is a condition where a person’s breathing stops and repeatedly starts while they are sleeping. This sleep disorder can be caused by an obstruction (Obstructive Sleep Apnea), which occurs when the muscles of the throat relax, or it can be a neurological problem (Central or Complex Sleep Apnea). 

When a person has sleep apnea symptoms in Idaho Falls, he or she will generally have a sleep study performed either at home or in a clinic. Once a diagnosis of sleep apnea has been made, a treatment plan will be implemented in order to treat the sleep apnea. In Idaho Falls, Comfort Sleep Solutions is a fully equipped sleep clinic that specializes in sleep disorders, such as sleep apnea. When a patient comes in and is diagnosed with moderate to severe sleep apnea, we generally start them on a treatment plan that includes a CPAP machine.

What is a CPAP Machine?man wearing a CPAP mask

A CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) device allows people who suffer from obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) to breathe more easily at night by gently forcing the throat muscles to stay open during sleep with air. When prescribed by a professional and used correctly, most patients with moderate to severe sleep apnea, see positive results and many of the symptoms associated with sleep apnea dissipate or are eliminated. However, there are occasions when the CPAP machine, for whatever reason, does not work for the patient. This may be due to various elements and circumstances, which will be discussed below. Additionally, if a CPAP machine doesn’t work for someone, there are other options to treat sleep apnea in Idaho Falls that don’t include surgery. But first, let’s take a look at the possible reasons why a CPAP machine wouldn’t work for someone.

3 Reasons Why Your CPAP May Not Be Treating Your Sleep Apnea

CPAP machines are designed to offer the user a more peaceful, well-rested night’s sleep. For some, this is not the case. Below are some of the reasons that your CPAP machine isn’t reducing your sleep apnea symptoms:

  • It’s the wrong size. If your CPAP machine doesn’t fit your mouth or nose properly, you most likely will have a hard time getting the correct amount of airflow. Additionally, if the CPAP is too small or big or not adjusted correctly, it will be uncomfortable. To fix this problem, contact your sleep apnea specialist in Idaho Falls and have them fit you for the right size. 
  • Difficulty getting used to. Many people report having issues getting used to wearing the mask at night, which, of course, can affect your ability to fall asleep. This article from the Mayo Clinic suggests wearing your mask throughout the day and every time you sleep, even during naps to get used to wearing it. Then if you still haven’t noticed a change in your sleep apnea symptoms within a month (the general amount of time it takes to start seeing a difference), call Comfort Sleep Solutions. We will be able to see if it’s your airflow needs to be adjusted, you need a different machine or another treatment plan. 
  • You have another sleep condition. If you suffer from sleep apnea and have another undiagnosed sleep disorder, such as insomnia, you probably won’t notice the benefits of a CPAP machine. If you are having trouble falling asleep, sleep apnea may not be to blame. Work with your physician and specialist to find the root of the problem. You may need to temporarily use a sleep aid in conjunction with a CPAP machine before you start seeing positive benefits. 

There Are Other Options to Treat Sleep Apnea

Apart from using a CPAP machine, there are other options to treat sleep apnea in Idaho Falls. Lifestyle changes as outlined here, and oral appliances such as a tongue retaining device or a mandibular advancement device (MAD) can help to alleviate some of the symptoms associated with sleep apnea. Contact Comfort Sleep Solutions to consult with one of our sleep specialists so that they can find the right sleep apnea treatment for you.

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