My health and relationship are suffering terribly. As soon as I go to sleep I start snoring immediately. Then my partner wakes me up to roll over, and I still snore. She says that sometimes I stop breathing in my sleep for brief periods of time, about four to five times a night. And that's before she kicks me out of the bed. I really need help with my snoring issue, but I don't have insurance. Is there anything I can do?
Doctors Answers (10)
From your description, it appears you have very mild OSA, with pathologic snoring. Snoring is a partial obstructive issue. In my practice I have a home sleep study unit and for a nominal fee (that pays for the test reading and disposables) you could be screened for a sleep disorder like snoring (it even has a microphone that records the decibels you create). From that, if you have an AHI of 5 or less (this is considered within a "normal" range), you could have a "snoring appliance" made. This is a nominal fee in my practice here as well. There are in-expensive ways to get information versus suffering (as does your partner) with a treatable issue. Google for a dentist in your area that screens and treats sleep disorders like snoring. You may have to drive a bit to get to one, however the alternative obviously is affecting your quality of life (both of you). You can also order a "snore" appliance from on-line. There are some out there that work fairly well, some of our patients have gotten/use with decent results. I understand that finances are an issue so check into that as well. I must tell you though that untreated obstructive sleep apnea can lead to such things as stroke and heart attack, so don't take this issue lightly.
Most centers will make payment arrangements in order to get you the treatment you need. The first step is make a call and schedule a consultation with a qualified sleep specialist. Explain your situation and then go from there.
With the advanced technology of today's better CPAP's, it's my expert opinion that most sleep studies (typically $1,200) are a waste of money. Our office will sell a new auto-CPAP with humidifier, hose, mask and headgear for $1,000 and a warranted used device for $700 total; these are cash prices without having to do any billing or collections. We have used machines with very low hours, since some patients initially start with a CPAP, but may require more advanced therapy and trade up.
When a CPAP raises it's pressure to overcome your obstructions, and you feel better, and my interpretation of the device agrees with yours, I don't think an initial sleep study or follow up sleep study are required. This takes $2,400 off the total cost.
The gold standard for treating sleep disordered breathing is CPAP therapy. This Continuous Positive Airway Pressure maintains an open airway and can stop snoring and apnea. Without insurance, your choices for this treatment are limited to paying cash or making installment payments for a sleep study, the CPAP machine and a doctor's fee. Most will work with you. It sounds as though your health and relationship are suffering and even taking out a loan would be in your best interest. Other inexpensive methods for treating snoring include weight loss, avoiding sedatives, especially alcohol, at bedtime and avoiding sleeping on your back.
We would recommend contacting your local sleep centers regarding payment options and discounts when paying with cash. The most effective way to treat sleep apnea is with CPAP therapy. After you are diagnosed and a therapeutic pressure determined, you will need to shop for a CPAP machine. Machines can be ordered from suppliers via the internet at a discount.
Please call the sleep center to inquire about the price of various sleep studies and to discuss any further options.
There certainly are treatments that are affordable without insurance. The first thing you need to do is make an appointment with Dr Tritt or Dr Kowal to be evaluated. They can then discuss different treatment options and the cost of those options. We make a mouth piece that you wear at night to stop snoring. If you visit our website there is a coupon for the sonoguard. You can call the office to schedule an appointment.
Talk to your primary care physician or dentist in making a referral to a sleep center for a sleep study. Ask the sleep center administrator for payment plans available. Once diagnosed as to whether you have sleep apnea or just a snoring problem, then you will know if you need a CPAP (breathing) machine or an oral anti-snoring appliance.
The most cost effective testing are our home sleep testing devices. We do work with patients on a cash basis and provide monthly payment arrangements as needed. Cost of these home testing devices range from $250 and up. Cash rate for a test in the center attended by a certified technician is $600 and may also be placed on a monthly payment plan with a deposit the night of the test.
Yes but would be an out of pocket expense. Most physicians can arrange payment plans.