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CPAP Side Effects That Might Bother You

CPAP side effects can be frustrating at times but are worth tolerating, as they are outweighed by the benefits. CPAP stands for continuous positive airway pressure and is a medical practice prescribed as a treatment for people with sleep apnea. 

The ventilator machine works to keep the airway open by using mild air pressure. Using this method at home is one of the most trusted and successful forms of treatment for obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). Patients suffering from OSA have trouble sleeping at night, as the airway becomes blocked. 

CPAP ensures that the airway is kept clear and prevents it from collapsing. The negative points associated with using the machines are not seriously detrimental to one's health but can be more annoying than anything else. 

One of the most common CPAP side effects is to be allergic to the mask, which can result in skin being irritated. There are many different types of sleep apnea masks available so users should not feel they need to tolerate any discomfort. They come in various sizes and can be made using different materials also. 

If you find that you've had problems with numerous mask types, consider trying one that has less straps and contact with your face. A specialist should be able to recommend one for you, if you cannot find a suitable one to purchase yourself.

cpap side effectsSome people may experience symptoms similar to a common cold or allergy when using continuous positive airway pressure. Having a runny nose, bleeding from the nose and congestion can occur as a result of the pressure applied through the mask. 

However, this does not happen as much with machines that have a heated CPAP humidifier so this could be an option to relieve the problems being experienced.

If a mask is leaking, this can cause a dry mouth as the air may be moving through the mouth instead of the nose. This will again feel similar to having a common cold, or having a blocked nose for a different reason. 


Most people will experience a dry mouth when they have a cold because their nose is congested so they will have to breathe through the mouth during sleep. If this is happening when using the CPAP machine, you may need a new or different mask.


One of the more unusual CPAP side effects is to experience uncomfortable sensations in your stomach. This can be very irritating and may prevent healthy sleep due to tossing and turning. The problem only usually happens if the air pressure setting needs to be amended on the machine. A specialist will be able to help fix this is you are unsure how to do it yourself.

cpap side effectsA widespread complaint with the equipment is in reference to the noise the machine makes, even though this issue has improved greatly over the years. The sound has been engineered to be soft and easy to ignore. However,  some people find it hard to sleep with any sort of noise in their bedroom, even if it is dull and rhythmic. If the sound really is unbearable, there is a chance that the machine is not working correctly and needs to be looked at.

One of the most common CPAP side effects occurs when there is a problem with air pressure. This can be scary if it occurs during a cycle and when you are asleep. 

A change in air pressure can result in a person finding it difficult to exhale and feel almost like they are suffocating. This is not the case of course, but problems and sensations are usually magnified when sleeping, as the mind is not alert enough to process what is happening and make an informed decision.

CPAP Side Effects Are Overshadowed By Its Benefits

More often than not, the benefits of CPAP outweigh any negative points. In most cases when sleep apnea has been diagnosed and oral appliances have not proved beneficial, continuous positive airway pressure will be used as a treatment. It is a pain free approach to take and can work immediately to help those who have problems with their upper airway being blocked while sleeping.

Improved sleep will increase daytime alertness and concentration. This is one of the benefits of CPAP that will be apparent quite quickly. If your nights are no longer being disturbed by constant waking, you can wake up feeling fresher and ready for the day. Feeling rested will have a very big impact on overall happiness and many people claim they feel like a brand new person.

One of the physical benefits of CPAP is what it will do to your overall health. Treating apnea at an early stage can reduce the risk of a stroke and other sleep apnea heart related problems. Sleep apnea puts pressure on breathing, which then forces the heart to work harder than it should be during the night. Insulin sensitivity can also be improved when using CPAP and your risk of having type 2 diabetes is increased if sleep apnea is left untreated.

cpap side effectsAs a result of improved sleep, a person using continuous positive airway pressure should feel less stressed and their emotional stability may be more balanced. Sleep disorders can leave a person feeling short tempered and moody, which is frustrating as it is a constant reminder of tiredness. 

Last but not least, saving money is one of the more important benefits of CPAP. Prices of machines vary but are definitely cheaper than the result of leaving sleep apnea untreated. 

Putting the body under long term and unnecessary stress will lead to more serious medical conditions, which can put a massive strain on the bank balance. As with all medical conditions, sleep apnea is easier and cheaper to treat in its early stages.

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