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New Member Intro - trouble tolerating treatment
Hi Everyone,

I'm new to the boards today. What a great place for information. A little about me. I was diagnosed with severe sleep apnea about a year ago now. I was prescribed the cpap machine and after a small adjustment period, I was tolerating therapy pretty well and was feeling better than I had in a long time. Then about 4-5 months ago I started getting horrible nasal allergies with the nasal pillows I was using. No matter how much I cleaned everything, or how much benadryl I took, nothing was helping. The only thing that helped was to not use the machine and that is not the answer. I did try a new nasal mask, but I'm a side sleeper and I found it to be noisy and it wouldn't stay sealed. My AHI is 55.4.

In the last month I have been to the allergist and I'm not allergic to anything, not even seasonal. I found this interesting because I was sneezing and coughing so bad from trying to use my machine the previous night that the doc thought for sure she'd find something.

I visited my sleep doc again and he prescribed a BiPap (VPap is what I got, assuming this is the same?) I'm not having much improvement so far and the fatigue I am feeling during the day is overwhelming. At this time I am (trying) using the Wisp nasal mask. Oh, and for added fun, I have insomnia, so falling asleep with the mask on is almost impossible as it creates anxiety, insomina, can't sleep...you can see the awful pattern.

I would really welcome any advice from anyone who has suffered anxiety/insomnia and what remedies work. Also, how about the best type of nasal mask for side sleepers? I can't do a full face mask, and I'm a nose breather so that is not an issue.

My current vpap machine is set at 11/ipap and 7/epap. I just asked my doc to add a prescription to add pressure support to the current settings (at the request of my equipment suppliers after I called and asked a hundred questions)...does anyone know what, if anything that will do to help?

One other question, what is a comfortable temp to keep the machine at? I need it cold to sleep and I find that no matter what temp I adjust the machine to, the air within the nasal mask gets hot which I can't tolerate.

Sorry for the long post, but I am at my wits end and I desperately need some help.

Thank you - hanging by a sleepy thread in Michigan...
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Hi Jad, sorry you're having so much grief with your therapy.... My thinking is your problem is environmental. What's going on with your humidifier? Perhaps the answer is as simple as turning it up a bit. For sure something is causing your cute little nosie to go crazy go nutz, and I would look to air quality and humidity first.

I can't help you much with the mask ideas, as I'm a dyed in the wool believer in pillows masks. Others will be along shortly that can make recommendations, although you must realize they simply don't know the truth. There is only one mask. The Resmed P10. ---ok, maybe also the Piliaro... Sooner or later everyone will use the P10. Without sneezing. Resistance is futile.
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I use a nasal mask --- Ultra Mirage - ultra quiet with a fair fit and very comfortable. I hated nasal pillows as they irritated the inside of my nose (deviated septum). The Ultra Mirage works fairly well sleeping on my side (66% of my sleep). My trick is keeping the hose clipped to the headboard directly over me, and routing the hose up over my head, not free flopping wherever.

Turn off the heat and humidity ... try that for a few days, then click the humidity up. I was living in Phoenix and found I needed to add moisture (30% to 40%RH in the home); but here in the PNW I don't use the humidifier most of the time (50% to 60%RH inside).

For the constant nasal drip of allergies, I find two products actually work for me: Sudafed Plus 24 hour (not the new formula) for real colds; and Certizine Hydrachloride (Zertec) for daily sniffles. You can buy the Zertec generic for about $20 for 120 tabs.

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As I understand, side sleeping is the preferred method. I use an Ultra Mirage Full face. I've learned to prop my head up a bit with my hand under my cheek. The firmness of the pillows make a difference, as does the angle or height.

As for the humidifier, it's all personal preference. You can run it without any heat. The air will pick up moisture. The purpose is just to give your nasal passage some moisture to keep it from burning. I usually sleep with it at 5. Last night, I slept with it at 2.
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Hi jadner,
WELCOME! to the forum.!
I'm sorry you are having such a rough time with tolerating CPAP therapy.
Have you tried doing a sinus rinse before bedtime?
Hang in there for more suggestions and much success to you with getting your problems with being able to tolerate your CPAP therapy straightened out, so you can get good sleep.
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For the nasal issues, in addition to cleaning all the parts and replacing filters, what works for me is Xlear nasal spray. It does a much better job of cleaning out the nasal passage than plain saline and has helped me to get relief from long-standing issues with post nasal drip and congestion.

For the anxiety + insomnia, have you ever tried some of the herbal remedies? There are several, and one or more of them may help. I like Linden + Lemon balm (Melissa) This combo doesn't so much make you sleepy like chamomile, but it is a mild anti-spasmodic and mood balancer.
هههههه هههههه هههههه هههههه هههههه هههههه هههههه هههههه هههههه هههههه هههههه هههههه هههههه هههههه
Tongue Suck Technique for prevention of mouth breathing:
  • Place your tongue behind your front teeth on the roof of your mouth
  • let your tongue fill the space between the upper molars
  • gently suck to form a light vacuum
Practising during the day can help you to keep it at night

هههههه هههههه هههههه هههههه هههههه هههههه هههههه هههههه هههههه هههههه هههههه هههههه هههههه هههههه
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Thank you so much everyone for the replies and advice. I am going to try to play with the humidifier settings to see if I can get some relief that way - 2PAPs I'm going to try it at a 2 tonight. What is so frustrating is that I used to be able to tolerate the machine and then all of a sudden I just couldn't anymore. retired_guy, I also really prefer the nasal pillows -- when I can tolerate them -- and I'm thinking of purchasing the type that you use, as I've seen many posts with positive reviews on those. GWild I've been trying to use the Respironics Wisp nasal mask, which I thought I loved in the office where I tried it, but it keeps my nose too warm, so maybe I'll investigate the type you use. Trish6hundred I've never tried a nasal rinse so maybe that's an option. DariaVader, I have not tried any herbal remedies other than some herbal "sleepytime" tea and melatonin but I don't get very good results. But I do appreciate the advice and I will look into other herbal remedies. I'm on a mission and cannot quit until I get the right "recipe" for a solid night's sleep. Oh how I hope it improves tonight...sleep well everyone!
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