Using CPAP for three years, still wake up tired?????

By jdub60 Latest Activity July 21, 2011 at 9:12 pm Views 8,309 Replies 8 Likes 3


I have tried everything I know to do, even taping my mouth shut at night. I use nasal pillows. I usually wake up feeling sleepy and tired. Its almost worse than before I used CPAP. Any ideas???? My prescription is 12. Is it possible I need a higher setting. I amconsidering another sleep study as its been three years.

Thanks for any advice.

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Replies (8 replies)

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  • Tracy
    Tracy July 25, 2011 at 8:34 am   

    jdub and nana -
    no doctor that I know would ever recommend taping the mouth shut - if one aspirates during the night - well, you could die…its just not safe.
    If you suspect mouth breathing you should be using a full face mask, not nasal pillows, or you could consider trying a chin strap with your nasal pillows.

    Jdub - if you are having air escape out of the mouth during the night, that means your apnea is not being resolved and so that would be why cpap is not effective for you and you are still feeling sleepy/tired.
    Do discuss this with your sleep doctor who might want you to try a different mask, or possibly check your cpap pressure with another overnight sleep study. You did not mention of your cpap therapy worked well in the first year or two and is now seeming ineffective - if so it could very well mean you need a pressure change. Your doctor will know what to do. Its important to keep our doctors informed so they can help resolve issues as they come up.
    It is very common for us to need cpap pressure changes over the years. If you are feeling tired and sleepy, cpap therapy is not working…could be a mask issue, humidification issue or cpap pressure. No need to suffer though, just inform your cpap provider of sleep doctor - they cannot help you if you don't keep them in the loop with your issues!

  • Avera
    Avera July 23, 2011 at 11:55 pm   

    It sounds as if a new Sleep Study would be helpful to you…

    It seems that different doctors have different ideas on how often a sleep study should be repeated. My sleep specialist recommends every two years if all is going well. He says that if you notice a return of symptoms like daytime sleepiness, have major health changes, weight loss, gain, etc. it is good to repeat more often.

    Some of the new CPAP machines are data-capable and have software to monitor your therapy. If your machine is one of these, you would, in effect, be getting a sleep study every night.

    This is all well and good. However, at least two things typically missing from the data one collects at home are the EEG (measures consciousness/sleep state) and the pulse-oximeter measuring O2 saturation. Those are things that are very important to know and a Sleep Study will give you this info.

  • Nana Jones
    Nana Jones July 21, 2011 at 11:28 pm   

    I have been using CPAP for over a year now and like you wake up feeling tired and sleepy. I get up several times during the night and my mouth is so dry I have to get something to drink. I don't have any advice for you just letting you know I feel the same as you every morning.

  • Gusindiana
    Gusindiana July 25, 2011 at 8:50 am   

    I didn't notice if you stated you had any other conditions beside Apnea, If you have another problem like I do I have Sarcoidosis and even though I sleep 6 to 7 hours a night I do wake up extremely fatigued and My pulmonary doctor has me on Nuvigil to help with the fatigue. Check with your doctors and explain this with them.

  • Nana Jones
    Nana Jones July 25, 2011 at 7:30 pm   

    I have alot of health problems. I have diabetes, neuropathy, high blood pressure, high cholestrol, thyroid gland problem and heart murmur. Some nights I may get 6 to eight hours but I am up every 2 hrs. Last night didn't go to sleep til after 3a.m. and up at 8 o'clock but up during that time. I tossed and turned alot also.

  • Gusindiana
    Gusindiana July 25, 2011 at 7:48 pm   

    I also have diabetes and the neuropathy that goes with it there is also a medicine to relieve the burning numbness of neuropathy

  • Avera
    Avera July 27, 2011 at 11:51 pm   

    I know what you mean about "Neuropathy." I have Type 2 diabetes and the neuropathy that goes along with it. The only medication that has worked for me is my pain medication that I take for chronic back pain. Luckily it works for the neuropathy as well so I don't have to take anything extra. When I think of all the medical problems I have and all the ones I have had in the past, I dislike the neuropathy the most. The pain and other sensations that it produces are extremely uncomfortable and unusual…

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