Sleep apnea and Backpacking

mtnwrunner

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Oct 2, 2012
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Sweet, Idaho
So, for those that have sleep apnea and use a cpap at home, what do you all use when backpacking? I am primarily a backpack hunter and I just don't use anything and sleep okay but not as good with a machine. Anything out there that is simple and works somewhat okay?

Randy
 

Poltax

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Jan 2, 2016
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UT
I have the same issue A couple of years ago we did a backpack hunt and I just dealt with it. After second day night I was pretty tired from not using the CPAP. One thing to look at is the mouth gaurds. They pull your lower jaw forward and help prevent your throat from closing up. I have not tried one yet. Might be something to look into.

There is also an electronic device that can be implanted in your throat area and turned on by bluetooth. I just heard a commercial about it the other day.
 

JoeDirt

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Mar 6, 2019
Messages
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I know the machine I use you can buy a battery pack. Different sleeping positions help.
 

mikechek1212

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Jun 4, 2019
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Dentist here... You should definitely look into a sleep appliance like poltax mentioned. Ask your sleep doc if there is a dentist he can refer you to. Definitely go with a dentist that is trained for treating sleep apnea. I know of patients who got an appliance for convenience for travel and ended up ditching their CPAP because the sleep appliance worked so well for them. Obviously, they work better for some than others. They aren’t cheap but sometimes medical insurance will cover them. You’d have to go to a dentist who knows how to bill medical insurance if yours will indeed cover it. Most dentists who treat a lot of sleep cases will know how to bill your medical insurance.
 
OP
mtnwrunner

mtnwrunner

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Sweet, Idaho
Dentist here... You should definitely look into a sleep appliance like poltax mentioned. Ask your sleep doc if there is a dentist he can refer you to. Definitely go with a dentist that is trained for treating sleep apnea. I know of patients who got an appliance for convenience for travel and ended up ditching their CPAP because the sleep appliance worked so well for them. Obviously, they work better for some than others. They aren’t cheap but sometimes medical insurance will cover them. You’d have to go to a dentist who knows how to bill medical insurance if yours will indeed cover it. Most dentists who treat a lot of sleep cases will know how to bill your medical insurance.
Could you elaborate a bit more on the appliance? Sounds interesting.

Thanks,
Randy
 

Bigjay73

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Jan 23, 2019
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Could you elaborate a bit more on the appliance? Sounds interesting.

Thanks,
Randy
It's a mouthpiece that positions the lower jaw to keep you from having apnea incidents. They're made custom for each patient, and are adjustable to fit perfectly. With insurance, mine was $600 out of pocket. I couldn't get used to a CPAP. There's also a new implant that goes under the chest skin that is supposed to keep your airways open.
 

Mossy

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Feb 28, 2016
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Eastern Washington
It's a mouthpiece that positions the lower jaw to keep you from having apnea incidents. They're made custom for each patient, and are adjustable to fit perfectly. With insurance, mine was $600 out of pocket. I couldn't get used to a CPAP. There's also a new implant that goes under the chest skin that is supposed to keep your airways open.

I think mine might have been less out of pocket but sounds about right. 2 machines and the appliance made no difference in my tiredness BUT if it did, the mouthpiece would be a no brainer
 

rob86jeep

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Dec 19, 2017
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Colorado
The good thing about hunting is you have the opportunity to take unlimited naps (as opposed to your normal work/family schedule)!
 

TimtedSnow

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Dec 7, 2019
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Alaska
I have a small (around one pound) portable cpap machine on the way to me now. I spent all last week doing research and this seems the best. My insurance covered it, too. I travel for a living, so that helped I think, otherwise they probably won’t cover a “convenience” item. It’s called the AirMini by ResMed.


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Jeremy11

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May 6, 2019
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New Zealand
You can buy generic silicon -based appliance mouthpieces for very little on line. You shape them to your mouth by putting in boiling water much like a football mouth guard. I've used them and they worked well for me.
 

wyosam

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Aug 5, 2019
Messages
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I’ll second the dental appliance (don’t screw around with DIY for this-too easy to screw yourself up). Mine cost about $600, but works better for me than cpap ever did, and I can use it anywhere with no weight penalty.


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LightFoot

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Feb 21, 2016
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487
Location
Texas
So, for those that have sleep apnea and use a cpap at home, what do you all use when backpacking? I am primarily a backpack hunter and I just don't use anything and sleep okay but not as good with a machine. Anything out there that is simple and works somewhat okay?

Randy
So glad you asked this question. I have been struggling with the same issue. I have just been dealing with it. Great to know there are backcountry options.

>>>----JAKE----->
 

Mosby

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Jan 1, 2015
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Some need to be really careful. There are people that have died when they go w/o their machine because of the severity of their sleep apnea. They stopped breathing and didn't wake up. Talk to your Dr. before going without.
 

T28w

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Dec 10, 2018
Messages
128
It's a mouthpiece that positions the lower jaw to keep you from having apnea incidents. They're made custom for each patient, and are adjustable to fit perfectly. With insurance, mine was $600 out of pocket. I couldn't get used to a CPAP. There's also a new implant that goes under the chest skin that is supposed to keep your airways open.
This is really when the oral appliance should be used. Cpap’s are the gold standard when it comes to reducing hypoxic/apnea events and should first line of treatment for OSA. The dental appliance is a good alternative to someone who cannot tolerate the cpap. Last I checked, there were several mask/cannula options to try but there are still some who just have trouble with the cpap. This is really when an oral appliance should be considered. They can be effective treatment option just not as effective as a cpap.
 

Hoot

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May 18, 2013
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Ft Collins, CO
I have a transcend mini cpap with two of the “2 night” batteries. I can get 3 nights out of the 2 combined. I had a solar panel but it quit working on my first trip. The cpap and two batteries works but is heavy, and as I said, 3 nights is my limit. The batteries charge slow as well, so I have to burn a whole day to recharge.

I am planning on going back to my doctor this winter to discuss further options. I am 36 and have dealt with this for 6 years, there’s got to be a better way that doesn’t affect quality of life. I’d love to be able to do more than 3 nights in the back country again, and I know my success rates would benefit from it as well!

going without is not an option for me, without cpap I have between 100-120 events per hour, which means I get almost no sleep and am completely worthless.
 
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mtnwrunner

mtnwrunner

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Sweet, Idaho
I have a transcend mini cpap with two of the “2 night” batteries. I can get 3 nights out of the 2 combined. I had a solar panel but it quit working on my first trip. The cpap and two batteries works but is heavy, and as I said, 3 nights is my limit. The batteries charge slow as well, so I have to burn a whole day to recharge.

I am planning on going back to my doctor this winter to discuss further options. I am 36 and have dealt with this for 6 years, there’s got to be a better way that doesn’t affect quality of life. I’d love to be able to do more than 3 nights in the back country again, and I know my success rates would benefit from it as well!

going without is not an option for me, without cpap I have between 100-120 events per hour, which means I get almost no sleep and am completely worthless.

Kinda why I posted the thread. Curious on options and what others use. I do okay but am sometimes just tired and I use Benadryl and melatonin to help in sleeping. Last thing I want to do is pack a machine around

Randy
 

JoeDirt

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Mar 6, 2019
Messages
91
I have a transcend mini cpap with two of the “2 night” batteries. I can get 3 nights out of the 2 combined. I had a solar panel but it quit working on my first trip. The cpap and two batteries works but is heavy, and as I said, 3 nights is my limit. The batteries charge slow as well, so I have to burn a whole day to recharge.

I am planning on going back to my doctor this winter to discuss further options. I am 36 and have dealt with this for 6 years, there’s got to be a better way that doesn’t affect quality of life. I’d love to be able to do more than 3 nights in the back country again, and I know my success rates would benefit from it as well!

going without is not an option for me, without cpap I have between 100-120 events per hour, which means I get almost no sleep and am completely worthless.
Good point that you bring up 100 events per hour is in the severe apnea category. I think an oral appliance would not work in your case. I think the oral only works with minor apnea 5-10/hr ???
 
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