My paddling partner has been diagnosed with sleep apnea. We’re trying to figure out how to hit the wilderness this summer with the bi-pap (or whatever you call the night breathing machine) in tow. Anybody out there with apnea who takes the machine on trips? Any models of breathing machine you would recommend?
sleep apnea & camping
I also have sleep apnea. I take my CPAP machine with me on camping trips and I use a 12v battery (Lithium Ion type)to run the unit. The battery that I use will give me 2 days of using my Remstar Auto (not bi-pap). It will however not power the humidifier so I use it in passover mode only.
I Also Have Sleep Apnea
Many thanks for bringing up a subject that has been on my mind for several years.
I have not camped out since discovering my sleep apnea primarily due to the lack of a mile-long extension cord. It would be interesting to know more details about your battery system.
Either post the here or send me a PM via my profile.
My wife has that
and we use a battery and inverter when camping.
I don’t sleep well to begin with and that humming of her machine bugs me, oh well !
CPAP to run off 12v battery
There are CPAP machines that will run directly off a 12v battery. Mine is a Puritan Bennet Goodnight 420Auto, but there are others. I bought the optional battery cable and the cable with the cig lighter connector. The 420A has a built in voltage regulator. This is the lightest (less than 2 pounds) CPAP on the market, and it takes up very little room in the canoe pack.
It runs much, much quieter than the 3 other CPAP machines (ResMed) I’ve had over the years. People who’ve slept in my tent have hardly noticed the CPAP, and they say my regular deep breathing helps them get to sleep, sort of like sleeping near mild surf, I guess. Before the CPAP NOBODY would sleep anywhere near my tent. I snored like a foghorn!
For wet environment I’m using a 55 amp hour AGM dry battery. They are more expensive than lead acid but are safer and spill free.
A 55 amp hour 12 volt AGM battery costs over $100, but will last for several nights in the bush, and if you need more nights out just hook up a solar charger on your canoe deck. There are some solar chargers with a built in charge controller so you don’t over charge the battery, and they also have water proof connectors.
The battery and solar charger don’t need to be protected from water, but they should be tied securely in your canoe or kayak in case of upset. The CPAP of course needs to be in a dry bag when not in use.
The heated humidifier won’t work on battery power though, so you have to leave that at home. The batery is a ^&%$# on portage, but considering the alternatives its not so bad. Just put it in a drybag and put it near the top of your pack.
You need a prescription to purchase a CPAP. If you didn’t get a prescription from your sleep clininc then have your regular physician prescribe the PB Goodnight 420a, and prescribe settings of 4 to 20. It automatically responds to breathing pressure and sets the level for optimal breathing. Your insurance may cover the cost of the CPAP and heated humidifier. Together they cost $600-$800.
I’m heading out on a 400 mile canoe trip in June and would never even consider going if I didn’t have this CPAP equipment so I can get a good night’s sleep every night. Without the CPAP I’d be miserable after the first night out.
what about a bi pap machine, not a cpap machine?
What do you recommend for that when we want to camp in the woods with no electricity.
thanks for apnea info
Many thanks for the information on CPAP machines! We will check out the battery and recharger. This info will make for a much better trip!
This is the battery that I use.
I wouldn’t go anywhere whithout my CPAP. I recently was checking the internet for them, and was amazed at how cheap you can purchase them for compared to what the medical supply stores charge for them.
bipap on 12v requires an Inverter
The PB Goodnight bipap will run on a cigarette lighter connection, but will not run directly from a 12 volt battery. There may be other BiPap machines which will run directly off a 12v DC connection.
In most cases for the Bipap you’ll need a inverter connected to the battery to change 12v DC to 120 AC, then you can plug the regular power cord into the innverter. Unfortunately the innverter itself uses a good bit of power because of its internal fan. Your battery life will be greatly reduced, probably by 1/2.
As an example, I have one of the 12v power packs to jump start a car. It has an air compressor, too. It has a 120v AC outlet and a 12v DC outlet. If I plug my Goodnight 420A CPAP directly into the 120V outlet I can run the CPAP all night.
But, if I plug the 12v Inverter into the power pack, then plug my CPAP into the Inverter I only get about 3 hours use before the power pack is dead.
I just heard that some people can use a
dental appliance instead of the machines. Would be worth looking into.
Would a trickle charge from a solar panel of the approbate size extend your paddle time? These are available from Camping World.
you can also have an operation
to remove the soft tissue. According to my doctor the success rate is about 50-50 and when it doesn’t work it actually makes the problem worse.
Dental devices may help keep the soft tissue from collapsing over the windpipe, but they don’t help introduce breathe to the lungs, so their use is only partially beneficial.
It’s also probable that a massive loss of weight would alleviate apnea in some patients. Unfortunately the presence of apnea also causes eating disorders which can lead to massive weight gain.
Many of us are life long apnea challenges; my own started when I was a navy recruit and probably at the best physical conditioning of my entire life.
Portable power supply
Looks like canoedancing found a way to add to your outdoor lifestyle. What needs engineered now?
Hubby has a CPAP
machine, and brings it when we camp anywhere with electric.
Otherwise we bring 2 small tents and he sleeps in his own tent - away from me, as the snoring wakes me right up (but not him).
I'll have to have him look into the battery mentioned here. Thanks for the info.
At my first sleep interview
The Dr asked me “where do you sleep the best?” “In a tent” was my answer. He gave me the strangest look!
Ah, but have you tried a hammock yet?
Actually, with my CPAP I can sleep like a baby just about anywhere I can lay down and stretch out. Haven’t mastered sleeping sitting up yet, as in airport/airplane.
I had that surgery
I had the works— Tonsillectomy, nasal turbinectomy, uvulaplasty, and partial septoplasty.
It was the most horrendous experience I’ve ever had, but it did improve my sleep scores some. I can’t tolerate CPAP, so I went for the surgery. Thank God for Liquid OXY!
I also take 30 MG Remeron at bedtime. Remeron is an antidepressant that, in a small study of apnea patients, caused improved sleep scores. I stopped my heavy snoring a few days after starting this regimen.
I am also on 2 liter O2 at night, to help keep me from getting hypoxic. That is easy enough to bring along on trips with a tank.