CPAP Dry Mouth, Dry Throat from Using CPAP, Dry Mouth with CPAP

• Does your mouth and tongue become dry when you are using your CPAP or BIPAP machine? Many people label this problem as CPAP Dry Mouth, Dry Mouth with CPAP and Dry Throat from using CPAP. 

Bottom line -  it is very uncomfortable.

• The 7 reasons why:

a) If you are using a CPAP Nasal Pillow or a CPAP Nasal Mask and your mouth or throat is drying out. It only means one thing – You are a mouth breather. The CPAP pressure is leaking out of your mouth and drying you out. 

b) You are not using CPAP heated humidifier properly. If you are dry, then you must use a Heated Humidifier designed for the CPAP and BIPAP.

     Raise the heat level of the heated humidifier. The higher the number on the heat level (I am not talking about your CPAP setting), the hotter the hot plate becomes and the more moisture you receive.

c) You suffer from a chronic dryness issue other than sleep apnea. For example Sjorgren Syndrome. For this you need a high performance heated humidifier – Fisher & Paykel HC150. You can use this heated humidifier along with your current CPAP or BIPAP machine.

d) You are currently suffering from a head cold or from allergies. During these times you have no choice but breathe through your mouth. Most people at this point will use their CPAP Mask and will open their mouth to breathe. Now the CPAP pressure will leak out of their mouth and cause dryness.

e) You are using the wrong CPAP Mask for your current CPAP setting or BIPAP setting. Example – if your CPAP setting is 14cmh20 and you are using CPAP Nasal Pillows, without a doubt your poor nasal passages will dry out. You  have to try out the other options.

f)     In a worse case scenario,  the dryness is caused by the CPAP or BIPAP settings being set to high.  

g) Some medication will dry you out. For example Psychiatric medications.

Is this you ?

We have many people whom we work with, when we do a follow up visit; find that they have completely forgotten the instructions on the proper use of the CPAP heated humidifier. <b>The 3 biggest responses are</b>:

1. “No one told me that I have a heated humidifier!”

2. So many people mistakenly think their CPAP heated humidifier button is how they can lower or raise their CPAP settings.

3. “The therapist said leave the CPAP heated humidifier setting at number two, so I never touched it again. But I am so dry that I keep a glass of water next to my bed every night.”

The Solutions 

Are you currently using a:

a) CPAP Full Face mask- does your mouth puff wide open and fill up with air. Now that is the reason why you are drying out. If so use a CPAP Chin Strap. Or switch to a Hybrid CPAP Mask.

b) CPAP Nasal Mask - use a CPAP Chinstrap, raise heater setting, tubing wrap, Snuggle Hose,  keep the CPAP tubing under your blanket, use heated CPAP tubing or switch to a CPAP Full Face Mask or a Hybrid CPAP Mask.

c) Nasal Pillows - use Chinstrap, raise heater level, Snuggle Hose,tubing wrap, heated tubing, CPAP nasal mask or CPAP Full Face mask. Or Hybrid CPAP Mask.

d) Use Ayers Saline Gel or any water soluble lubricant if your nasal passages are still dry even after you raise your heated humidifier setting.

e) Persistent dryness regardless of what your heater setting is – then you need to use the Fisher & Paykel HC150. 

f) Please keep in mind that you control what number the heated humidifier is to be set at. When you receive the heated humidifier, the Respiratory Therapist will set it at the manufacturer recommended starting setting. After that point you change the settings to meet your needs. You control it.

g) Preheat your distilled water in the CPAP heated humidifier before using your CPAP. Especially in the colder months, many people’s noses become highly irritated and start to run when cold air is blown through it.

h) Use a Tubing Wrap or a Snuggle Hose or a Heated Wire CPAP Tubing or keep your CPAP tubing under your blanket - to keep the temperature and humidity level consistent inside the CPAP tubing. This will prevent condensation.

i) A number of people have reported success using Xylimelts tablets in their mouth while sleeping with their CPAP. I have spoken to a few  Sleep specialist about it and their response ..... "If it works great. As long as the dryness is not caused from a CPAP air leakage issue."  (Meaning ....For example, someone using a Nasal Pillows or Nasal Mask and opens their mouth while sleeping.) When the CPAP leak issue is remedied, the dryness problem tends to go away. Please check with your doctor first about using Xylimelts.

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