Traveling isn’t easy for sleep apnea patients who need a CPAP (continuous positive air pressure) machine to get a good night’s rest.
Sleep apnea is a disorder characterized by the back of the victim’s throat collapsing while they’re sleeping, blocking the airway. Consequently, they can’t breathe, and come out of deep sleep. This can happen hundreds of times a night. The victim doesn’t get enough rest or oxygen. Therefore, they feel tired during the day.
They are also at higher risk of developing cardiovascular cconditions, diabetes, high blood pressure, and stroke.
There are CPAP machines designed for travel. They are smaller and lighter than the standard sizes, and do not include humidifiers. They can even be used while sleeping on an airplane.
Some sleep apnea victims use a CPAP machine at home, but a nasal valve device while traveling. The nasal valve device fits over the nostrils and is held in place by tape. The valve opens and close as the patient breathes. This redirects air to create pressure in the back of the throat, keeping it open.
Another travel option for sleep apnea patients is to use an oral device. The patient wears it the mouth while sleeping, and it keeps the jaw forward, thus maintaining an open airway. A doctor must prescribe it. A qualified dentist must fit each one to the patient’s mouth.
One of the nation’s top experts in this field is Dr. Avi Weisfogel of Dental Sleep Masters.
Dr. Weisfogel established his own dental practice in 1999. While serving his regular patients he began exploring how doctors and dentists together can help patients with sleep apnea. In 2010 Dr. Weisfogel created Heart Healthy Sleep to work with physicians on establishing and managing sleep labs.
As the owner of Dental Sleep Masters, Dr. Weisfogel teaches dentists to identify sleep apnea victims and help them receive the oral devices they need.
Risk for having sleep apnea goes up with age and weight, though young and thin people also develop this condition.
If your sleeping partner complains you snore or if you are tired during the day, check with your physician.