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Sinus infection cannot use CPAP
Having a huge problem: sinus infection and cannot use my Bipap. Any suggestions to lessen the apneas while I am getting better?

Does positional therapy really matter? I sleep on my back because of back and shoulder problems. It's mostly my shoulder.,if I could possibly try and sleep on my stomach do you think the apneas would be better?

Kimberly from HonoluluSleep-well
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I am newly diagnosed and am wondering of sleeping position makes a big difference with apneas.
I have been sleeping on my back for the past year because I have a back problem and a shoulder problem. However the back is getting better. Now it is the shoulders that are preventing me from sleeping in a better position, like my side or stomach.

( I have already been through physical therapy and still have shoulder pain. Now I am going to see an orthopedic shoulder specialist.)

I am wondering: how much of a difference, in apneas, does the sleeping position make?

I "practice" laying on my side and stomach during the day to see if I can possibly tolerate it an entire night without pain. I might be able to sleep on my stomach for half of the night. (I use a Air Fit P 10 which is very small and might stay on, while stomach sleeping.)

Does sleeping on the stomach or side reduce apneas significantly? What do you all think?
(The reason I ask is because sleeping on my side or stomach might cause me a lot of shoulder pain. And I am weighing the pros and cons of changing my sleeping position.)

Thank you for your input. I am new to sleep apnea.
Kimberly from HonoluluSleep-well
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There is no reason to stop therapy because of a sinus infection.
You simply need to get a full face mask or an oral mask. That will allow you to breath through your mouth when you cannot breath through your nose.
Many of us nasal mask users also have full face masks for special occasions.
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(09-09-2014, 05:13 PM)kfujioka Wrote: I am newly diagnosed and am wondering of sleeping position makes a big difference with apneas.
Avoiding sleeping on your back helps, some people have whats called "positional sleep apnea"

I,m just recovering from cold and stuffy nose and was able to continue CPAP using full face mask. Sinus rinse helps too
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My understanding is sleeping on your back is the worst position. For me personally sitting up in a recliner, not all the way back, gives me better sleep when I am not treating (which is very rare as I still don't feel good not using it). Everyone has always said use a full face mask. Hope that helps you.
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Hi kfujioka,

I've found that side sleeping is infinitely better than back sleeping as far as my apnea is concerned. Unfortunately, when I first tried side sleeping I had a great deal of shoulder pain. Being slightly broad shouldered, I expected that to be a problem. Fortunately, I have found a way to work around the situation and allow me to get the side sleeping benefits and still have most of the back sleeping comfort.

I place a large firm pillow against my back and in alignment with my torso, starting just above my hips and running up toward my shoulders. I place this pillow in such a way that when I roll over against it, it supports my torso comfortably in a mid-way position. That allows me to stretch my legs out just like I always enjoyed doing when sleeping on my back and not have the problem of leg crossing that side sleeping gives. It still allows me to keep the side of my head planted on my regular pillow and get the benefits of side sleeping as far as apnea is concerned. It also spreads the load between my shoulder and my back so that I no longer wake from a sore shoulder or an arm that is numb from lack of blood flow. I sleep in this modified position all night long and have not been bothered with having to reposition myself to get comfortable like I used to do when first trying to side sleep.

I also will tell you that I use a 4" mattress topper that has a 2" layer of medium support on the bottom and a 2" layer of memory foam on top. That helped a great deal with the shoulder pain relief. I got that before I tried the modified sleep position and although it helped, it wasn't the total answer. I had also bought a firm "side sleeper" pillow and it wasn't the answer either but is now used as the torso support pillow. For me at least, it took all the elements working in concert to get me the comfort I need to deal with side sleeping.

I'm absolutely sure that side sleeping is well worth the effort if you want to maximize your therapy, minimize your pressure requirements for your mask (easily 2 cm less with less leaks, which makes for less facial damage from having to over-tighten the straps) and get as much bodily comfort in the process as is possible.

I can understand that my solution may not work for everybody since various back, shoulder and neck conditions come into play but I will say that I have a long standing problem with a torn rotator cuff that I should have gotten fixed years ago and also have a less than friendly neck when it comes to torquing it so I'd be less than an ideal candidate to benefit from this modified positional sleeping but it's doing a great job for me.

Give it a shot, it may be just what you need also. The most expensive part of the whole setup is the mattress topper, which cost me $170 but well worth that and more.

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Have you tried a nasal rinse? That is what I have used when I have sinus infections. I use a nasal rinse right before bed, put on my nasal pillows, crank up the humidifier, and go to sleep. Sometimes I am a little stuffy when I first lay down but the pressure pushes the crap out of the way and I go right to sleep. The humidification really helps, too.

If you decide not to use your mask, then sitting up at night in a recliner is probably the best option.
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I agree with Paula and Galactus - if you are sure you can't use your CPAP while having the infection, then try sleeping in a recliner.
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