Sleep Apnea Solutions Without CPAP
How You Can Receive Sleep Apnea Treatment Without CPAP
Are you waking up in the morning feeling unrested? Worse yet, are you jumping up in the middle of the night because you feel like you can’t breathe? Unfortunately, you may have some form of sleep apnea.
Sleep apnea is a sleeping disorder commonly caused when the muscles in the soft palate begin to relax. In turn, the respiratory passageway shrinks, causing partial breathing, which leads to snoring. If the passage closes entirely, you’ll temporarily stop breathing, shaking you from your sleep.
If you’ve attempted to halt this health-threatening condition with CPAP treatments only to find other concerns, consider receiving a sleep apnea treatment without CPAP.
What Is a CPAP Machine and How Does It Help?
If you have experience with sleep apnea, you’re probably familiar with a CPAP machine. A CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) machine consists of a mask that fits over your nose and mouth. The device works by delivering pressurized air into your passageways to keep your soft palate from falling and obstructing your breathing.
Why Users Quit Using Their CPAP Machine
The CPAP machine has a history of successfully treating many forms of sleep apnea, including obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) and central sleep apnea (CSA). However, although successful 80% of the time, CPAP doesn’t work for some. More often than not, patients scour for a sleep apnea treatment without CPAP for the following reasons:
- Claustrophobia: Feeling confined with a mask on all night
- Uncomfortableness: Entangling in the tube or losing the ability to turn freely
- Waking up with a dry mouth: A deviated septum or expanded tonsils and adenoids can cause you to breathe solely through your mouth. In addition, the machine running will lead your mouth and nose to dry out more than usual.
- Price point: If you purchase the machine without assistance, expect to spend at least $250 and even over $1000. With insurance, you’ll still need a rent-to-own plan with a compliance requirement stating you must wear the mask for at least four hours for 70% of the nights in your month-long compliance period.
Your Alternatives for a Sleep Apnea Treatment Without CPAP
Depending on your grievances with the traditional CPAP treatment, you can find many other options available and FDA-approved for a better night’s sleep.
Smaller Oral Devices
If the tube and the mask make an overwhelming option, consider smaller treatment devices that resemble a dental night guard for bruxism. With over 100 separate devices, from oral appliance therapy (OAT) for mild cases to a mix of CPAP and oral appliance treatment for severe cases, ask your doctor for help finding the right solution for you.
If the CPAP machine creates an intense airflow that negatively affects your body, try a BiPAP (bilevel positive airway pressure) machine. Although you’d have to wear a mask for this treatment, you can set the airflow to suit your breathing needs, unlike with a CPAP machine.
You can select the setting with the same air pressure on both the inhale and exhale. Otherwise, choose the lower-pressure-during-exhale setting, popular with those who have lung disease or heart conditions.
However, simple lifestyle changes or surgical alterations can also reduce the need for a device, leading to a more comfortable and safe sleeping routine, including the following:
Surgeries and Other Procedures
Sometimes, for a sleep apnea treatment without CPAP, you need to alter the root problem of your sleep apnea. That can take the form of surgeries like hypoglossal nerve stimulation.
Hypoglossal nerve stimulation prevents your tongue from blocking your passageway from the inside. A device placed in your chest will use a sensor to monitor your breathing. If it notices any unusual behavior, it sends signals to the hypoglossal nerve to tell it to move the tongue from your passageway.
Other surgeries include:
- Jaw surgery
- Nasal surgery
- Tonsil and adenoid removal
- Soft palate implants
Being overweight can cause excessive tissues to place pressure on your throat. Choosing to lose weight, even 10% of overall body fat, can dramatically enhance your airflow. Uncover the best weight loss options for your unique lifestyle and diet with your doctor.