A colleague of mine recently developed a wrist brace for ulnar-sided wrist pain — pain on the pinky side of the wrist.
In our discussions we learned what I often learn when discussing health care issues, the continuum of care is very similar, at least in the early stages, as the sleep apnea continuum. Ulnar-sided wrist pain is something that is best dealt with at the primary care level, but PCPs frequently don’t understand the issue which is usually due to TFCC (triangular fibrocartilage complex) tendonitis or how to treat it.
I think Jeff has a great product that will do very well, and I hope we get to explore building a care continuum program for joint pain!
Here is a link to an article that discusses pain on the pinky side of the wrist…
To learn more about this brace for ulnar-sided wrist pain / TFCC injuries, please visit the Bullseye Brace home page.
CPAP problems are not unusual. Although the therapy is 100% effective for sleep apnea, it can also sometimes be challenging. This list of common CPAP problems and their solutions might help you get more out of your therapy.
The TotalCare Sleep Apnea disease management program is available free to any CPAP user and supported by qualified, professional, CPAP therapists. If you want help with your CPAP problems and help getting better sleep, click here to create your free account, complete an interactive CPAP therapy checkup, and to give us some details about your CPAP equipment.
CPAP Problem: Bloating, Burping & Gas
CPAP side effects bloating, burping and gas are some of the common side effects of CPAP therapy. The medical term for these side-effects is Aerophasia. Fortunately this CPAP problem can usually be managed with persistence and help from your CPAP therapist.
If your stomach feels bloated or you burp a lot after using your CPAP, you may be swallowing excess air during your sleep. Sometimes it’s simply a matter of getting accustomed to relaxed, regular breathing with your CPAP. This is especially true if you are new to CPAP therapy.
CPAP Problem: Vivid Dreaming During CPAP Use
Yes ‘CPAP Dreams’ are a normal and common ‘side effect’ of CPAP therapy. Quite often, untreated OSA disrupts sleep so severely that the dream stage is constantly interrupted or never reached at all. When the OSA is suddenly eliminated by CPAP, dreams will often be more intense , memorable, and frequent as sleep is restored.
Early in therapy, CPAP dreams may occupy much of your sleep time for the first week or so. After that, the dreams will taper off toward the levels seen in normal, healthy adults.
- ‘CPAP dreams’ are a normal and common side effect
- Untreated OSA disrupts sleep constantly interrupting the REM sleep stage
- When OSA is eliminated by CPAP, dreams will become intense, memorable, and frequent
- These dreams will eventually taper off and you will dream like a normal healthy adult
CPAP Problem: Claustrophobia
There is an adjustment period for most CPAP users as they get used to sleeping with any mask on the face. While your goal is to be able to sleep all night on CPAP, using it as long as you can tolerate it each night is better than nothing.
To reduce or eliminate feelings of claustrophobia, use your mask while you’re awake. Practice by first just holding the mask up to your face without any of the other parts attached. Once you’re comfortable with that, try wearing the mask with the straps and without the hose connected. Then attach the hose and turn your CPAP machine on at a low-pressure setting (with ramp feature turned on) and try holding the mask to your face and breathing without using the straps. And, finally, wear the mask with the straps and with the machine turned on.
CPAP Problem: Dry Mouth
If you wake with a dry mouth, chances are that you sleep with your mouth open – don’t worry, a lot of CPAP users do this. CPAP therapy can cause slight dry mouth on it’s own, but if you sleep with your mouth wide open, the problem can be seriously exacerbated. In this case, you might benefit from getting a chin strap if you use a nasal mask or nasal pillows mask. You can also use a full-face mask to accommodate mouth breathing.
CPAP Problem: Dry or Stuffy Nose
Having a dry or stuffy nose as a result of wearing a CPAP mask is never fun. Doctors recommend that you use the heated humidifier function on the CPAP machine to raise the humidity levels. If the humidity levels are too low, your mucous membranes react by becoming inflamed and swollen, which creates dryness and stuffiness. If using the heated humidifier doesn’t work, try using a saline spray right before you go to bed. If the dryness and stuffiness continues, you ask your doctor about using a steroid nasal spray.
CPAP Problem: Skin irritation, Sores and Bruises from Mask
No mask should cause pain nor discomfort if sized correctly and fitted properly. One of the most common mistakes CPAP users mask, is over tightening their CPAP mask, which leads to marks. Try loosening the straps and bit and let the mask form a seal when the air starts to flow. If you have to over tighten your mask to get a good CPAP Mask seal, your mask cushion may be worn out and need replacing. Or, you may need something to help with CPAP Mask Leaks
CPAP Problem: Bloody Nose
A bloody nose during CPAP use is a common problem, especially in the beginning of CPAP therapy. If you have a heated humidifier, try adjusting the level of humidity to make sure you are getting maximum humidity without creating condensation in your tubing or CPAP Mask. You might also try using a nasal saline spray or a ‘neti pot’ before bedtime to moisten your nasal airway. To maximize humidity in your airway without causing ‘rainout’ in your tube, upgrade to a heated tube. Talk to your doctor if you continue to experience a bloody nose during CPAP use.
Read more about mask problems at this post – Sleep Apnea Mask Problems and Solutions
People with narcolepsy are prone to weight gain and are often overweight. Narcolepsy is characterized by excessive sleepiness, but the new findings suggest it can also increase weight gain. The findings further unveil that even if narcoleptics consume less than those without the condition, they are still prone to weight gain.
Deficiency in Orexin
The researchers found that deficiency in a hormone – known as orexin – may be to blame, as it encourages hunger and wakefulness, leaving individuals with a lack of energy-burning brown fat. The findings suggest that orexin-targeted weight loss therapies may help narcoleptics and others who are overweight.
There are two types of fat: white and brown. White fat stores calories, whereas brown fat works to burn calories by generating heat.
The evidence found in mice suggests that orexin is crucial for the formation of mature brown fat, but with minimal orexin, brown fat activity drops. Mice injected with orexin showed substantial fat loss. The findings also reveal that those with minimal brown fat are essentially predisposed from birth to live an overweight life, as their bodies simply do not have the mechanisms to burn fat like others with more brown fat.
There are ways to naturally promote brown fat, for example, spending time in the cold. But the study suggests, orexin-specific treatments may help those struggling to lose weight as well.
Narcolepsy and Weight Gain Linked to Hormone Deficiency
We are so excited to share some of the great updates and features that we’ve done over the past few weeks.
One of the most exciting of these updates is the new CPAP Assessment Score at the end of your Maintenance encounter, as well as some simple tasks to help you with any issues you may be having. As you progress in your therapy, it is always nice to see this score rise.
You will be able to find your score easy on the new Dashboard. And, if you haven’t established your starting CPAP Assessment Score yet, you’ll see the link to do that on your Dashboard.
Speaking of the Dashboard, you will find the link to it in the left hand menu. It will show you your CPAP Assessment score, along with a feature to share it, send it to yourself in an email, or download it to your computer. The Dashboard will also show you if you have any unread messages, how you are doing on your profile, if you have any open tasks, and other cool things.
You will also notice that we changed up the menu a little to make it easier to find things. We will be doing some more changes to the menu in the near future to make it even easier.
Another thing we are excited about is the new CPAP Survival Guide. This can be found in the Resources section of the menu and it is also incorporated in the “ToDo” lists to help you get the most from your therapy. The CPAP Survival Guide is jam packed full of useful information to help you make livinig with CPAP easier and less stressful.
Most of the changes we have made came from suggestions from our users like you and we need more input to keep making the changes that you want to see. If you have a suggestion, we really want to hear it. Just click on “Feedback” in the menu and let us know your thoughts.
Have a Happy Holiday,
We are excited to announce the start of the Sound Sleep Giveaway! Click here to enter now and you could win one of thirty instant win prizes or the grand prize of a Sound of Sleep Therapy System and a $250 Amazon gift card.
At CPAP TotalCare, we believe that sleep is the foundation of health and that with the right tools, everyone can get a great night’s sleep. All prizes in the sweepstakes are handpicked tools for a better sleep.
Are you a sleep clinician or researcher?
We are committed to increasing awareness of sleep health as well as learning more about the sleep issues that affect millions of people in the United States. Through this sweepstakes we will deliver a message of good sleep health and also gather survey data about sleep habits and conditions.
If you are interested in seeing the survey results, help us spread the word through this Thunderclap that will be heard on December the 1st, and comment on this blog post to add your name to the distribution list for the results.