Sleep apnea can be a serious condition, so it’s understandable that finding the right treatment can take time. Some patients respond well to using a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine every night, while others do better with oral appliances. Another subset of patients could experience much better results by combining the therapies.
If you’re considering combined therapy in Ballston Spa, NY, you will be happy to learn that Integrative Sleep Center offers this service. The first step in learning whether combined therapy for sleep apnea is right for you is to schedule a consultation with our sleep center.
Why Treating Sleep Apnea is Important
You might not think it’s a big deal that you struggle to take a deep breath a few times a night. The reality is that you may be fighting for breath hundreds of times each night without knowing it.
Sleep apnea also does much more than interrupt your sleep. Left untreated, the symptoms leave you tired and unfocused during the day while increasing your risk of diabetes, stroke, heart disease, high blood pressure, and other chronic health conditions at the same time. Treatment is necessary to preserve your health and improve your quality of life.
CPAP Therapy for Sleep Apnea
CPAP equipment includes a mask that you place over your nose and mouth at night, a tube that connects the mask to the equipment, and a large piece of equipment that holds everything else together. The machine delivers air to the hose that transports it to your mask to ensure that your airways remain open throughout the night. You will wear one of three types of masks with CPAP equipment depending on your comfort level and the type of sleep apnea diagnosed by our team.
CPAP equipment works by drawing in air that sits at room temperature, filtering and pressurizing it, and then delivering it to your mask for you to breathe in during sleep. The purpose of continuous air flow with a CPAP machine is to apply gentle pressure to your tongue, soft palate, and uvula to prevent them from moving too far into your airways and causing you to snore or struggle for breath.
Some of the biggest benefits you can expect from wearing CPAP equipment are reduced daytime sleepiness, better sleep quality, and reduced risk of heart attack and stroke. If you have diabetes, you may notice that your blood sugar readings are more consistently stable. CPAP machines also present potential drawbacks, including the following:
- Dry mouth
- Nasal congestion
- Skin irritation
Some people also feel highly claustrophobic when hooked to CPAP equipment and cannot tolerate it at all. No matter what the reason for struggling with a CPAP machine is, it’s good to know that combined therapy in Ballston Spa, NY is an option.
Treating Sleep Apnea with Oral Appliances
People who cannot tolerate CPAP equipment may experience better symptom relief by wearing an oral appliance that pushes the tongue forward at night. Another type of oral appliance prevents blockage of the airways at the back of the throat, just as the CPAP equipment does. If you fail to see symptom relief within a few weeks of starting oral appliance therapy, speak to your sleep specialist at Integrative Sleep Center about trying combined therapy.
We understand that trying one treatment for sleep apnea can be frustrating only for it not to bring the relief you hoped. Our team continues to work closely with each patient until we find the ideal treatment for their sleep apnea.
CPAP Machine: What It Is, How It Works, Pros & Cons (clevelandclinic.org)