CPAP Side Effects – Why CPAP May Not Be Your Best Sleep Apnea Treatment Option
A variety of different CPAP side effects mean CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) isn’t always your best sleep apnea treatment option. Although CPAP is the most commonly prescribed treatment for sleep apnea, a host of problems make it a poor choice for many people.
Unfortunately, CPAP is often the only option provided to people suffering from sleep apnea. It is thought of as the one and only cure.
This narrowed view of thinking is due to a couple of key factors. First, many doctors are not familiar with or experienced in dealing with CPAP alternatives and, secondly, pressure from insurance companies keeps doctors from prescribing other treatments and keeps patients from seeking out alternative solutions.
Independent sleep apnea researcher and best selling author, Marc MacDonald, discusses alternative cures for sleep apnea in his downloadable ebook, “Cure Your Sleep Apnea Without CPAP”. With each treatment method, Marc discusses real life case studies of people who have cured sleep apnea without CPAP.
It is important to point out that CPAP is an excellent obstructive sleep apnea cure in many cases. It continues to help thousands of people around the world deal with sleep apnea symptoms in route to getting a good night’s sleep and eliminating daytime fatigue. However, it’s not the only sleep apnea solution and it simply doesn’t work for some people because of its many drawbacks.
Some people try CPAP as a sleep apnea treatment unsuccessfully for months. Despite their best efforts, they simply can’t get used to the feeling of sleeping with a mask and being tethered via a hose to a CPAP machine. Feelings of claustrophobia cause unnecessary stress and put some people into a panic.
A wide range of CPAP machine side effects include:
- Feelings of claustrophobia
- Stress and panic related illnesses
- Dry mouth and throat
- Nasal irritation plus a stuffy and/or dry nose
- Red spots, bruises, and irritated facial skin
- Headaches and forehead pain
- Belching and/or stomach bloating from swallowing air (Aerophagia)
- Disrupted sleep from overly loud CPAP machines
- Inability to use a CPAP machine if power goes out
- Poorly fitting CPAP masks and leaking air, making the entire system ineffective
- Rainout (the accumulation of water in a CPAP hose due to warm, moist air cooling on its way from the CPAP machine to the CPAP mask)
- Sores inside the nose from the use of nasal pillow or nasal prong devices
- Facial breakouts
- Dry eyes
- Open sores from irritations that are left untreated
- “Machine smell” of the air sometimes leading to feelings of nausea
- Becoming tangled in CPAP hosing
- “Sleep debt” which refers to continued tiredness even after starting treatment
Of course this article wouldn’t be fair if we didn’t also point out some of the positive side effects of CPAP treatment which can include:
- A “CPAP high” which refers to the initial burst of energy some patients experience when using a CPAP machine
- Deep and restful sleep
- Improved mood and reduced irritability
- Improved focus and concentration at home and at work
- Better relationships with friends, family, and coworkers
- More daily energy and reduced feelings of fatigue
- Improved sexual desire and performance
Many CPAP machine problems can be solved by ensuring only a properly fitting CPAP mask is used and by properly adjusting the pressure on the CPAP machine. CPAP accessories such as humidifiers, hose covers (e.g. CozyHoze), and CPAP hose lift systems can also help eliminate problems like dryness and congestion, rainout, and hose entanglement, respectively.
However, other CPAP side effects are not easily remedied and continue to be a persistent problem for some patients. When this is the case, CPAP alternatives and other sleep apnea remedies, like those found in “Cure Your Sleep Apnea Without CPAP”, should be sought.
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