Traveling with sleep apnea does not have to be intimidating.
We recently saw a discussion online about traveling with sleep apnea. The poor traveler had such difficulty traveling, he would sleep in a recliner. Traveling with a CPAP machine usually means reading a manual to understand everything you have to do to properly prepare for your trip. Fortunately, there are better solutions. For those who use oral device therapy, traveling with sleep apnea is as easy as packing your toothbrush.
Traveling with sleep apnea oral device vs. CPAP:
When traveling with sleep apnea do you often try to “forget” to bring your CPAP device on trips because of the challenge of getting through airport security? There have been stories of CPAP devices being taken out of the bag to be swabbed, held up and shown to all of the other travelers in the security line. A SomnoDent oral device fits in your carry-on baggage. A CPAP machine IS a carry on and many of them require their own luggage. Many airports also advise against checking your CPAP due to chances of the machine being lost or damaged.
The Plane Ride
When patients do take their CPAP they may have problems with current or compatible plugs, access to clean water for humidifiers or facilities to properly clean machines on a daily basis. Unfortunately, clean water may not always be available in foreign travel. Traveling overseas or cross country to various business destinations typically means extended flights, and long travel times usually mean sleeping on the plane. CPAP machines are now available with batteries but these increase weight dramatically and you may not be allowed to use them. In addition, it is problematic using them if you are not flying first or business class. We recently heard from a patient who flew to Australia for a business trip; however, his snoring was so loud that the stewardess woke him continually throughout the trip. He was embarrassed when he realized that not only did he disturb the passengers in first class but it was a major topic of discussion throughout the plane. Worst of all he arrived in Australia so exhausted he was unable to function well in his executive capacity. A SomnoDent oral device saved his next trip.
Where You Stay
Sharing rooms with spouses and friends can be a major issue if a CPAP or oral device is not brought along to treat sleep apnea. Many patients book two hotel rooms at great expense or compensate for a lower-end vacation resort to get inexpensive rooms. Snoring often leads to tense situations on what was supposed to be an enjoyable and relaxing vacation. Patients who have gone on hunting trips with friends may find that they are not invited on the next trip due to their snoring disturbing the sleep of others. As it can be difficult to find a 200-mile extension cord, a SomnoDent patient told us the option of not having to make sure he had a source of power available meant he could go camping again. Unfortunately, many outlets in foreign countries are not compatible with a CPAP making travel overseas an electrical gamble.
The Academy of Sleep Medicine approves oral devices to treat mild and moderate obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) as a choice of treatment. They are not for everyone, but the majority of patients prefer them to CPAP and compliance rates are significantly higher. Oral devices are easy to travel with fitting in carry on luggage and purses. They can be discreetly worn while sleeping on a plane and cleaning the device is far less complex than a CPAP machine. However, many patients traveling with sleep apnea still like their CPAP machines but use SomnoDent oral devices to travel and, often, switch full time to SomnoDent oral devices to treat their mild to moderate obstructive sleep apnea (OSA).
If you are interested in finding a SomnoMed preferred dentist in your area, click HERE to find a provider. Ask your physician or dentist for more information on treating your snoring or mild to moderate sleep apnea with SomnoDent devices.