Sleep apnea is a condition that can negatively impact your overall health and quality of life. Read on for more details about how much money you can expect to spend on treatment for the condition, as well as ways to save.
How Much Does Sleep Apnea Treatment Usually Cost?
The most common method used to treat sleep apnea is a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine. A CPAP machine is connected with a tube to a mask that you wear during sleep. The machine pushes air through the tube, which enters your airways through the mask to help keep your throat open so that airflow is not blocked.
According to the American Sleep Association, prior to insurance contributions, the cost of a CPAP machine ranges between $500 and $3000, with an average cost of about $850.
An alternative to a CPAP machine is a bilevel positive air pressure (BiPAP) device, which uses two different airflow pressures during exhalation and inhalation. These machines are similar to CPAP machine, but tend to be a bit more expensive.
Other treatment options include customized sleep apnea mouth guards to improve the positioning of your jaw to keep your airways open. According to the American Sleep Association, these mouthguards cost between $1800 and $2000, including the price of the mouth guard and dentist visits needed for fitting and adjustment. Insurance will typically cover some of these costs.
“Oral appliances are not usually less expensive than a CPAP. However, they are more convenient, and therefore, compliance is typically much higher,” Adrienne Hedrick, DDS, a dentistry practitioner out of Longmont, CO, tells WebMD Connect to Care.
How to Save Money on Sleep Apnea Treatment
Because doctors most often recommend CPAP machines to treat sleep apnea, insurance typically covers them. But if you have a high deductible or are uninsured, the American Sleep Apnea Association has a CPAP Assistance Program to help. This program supplies CPAP machines to patients in need based on funded donations. You will need to submit an application along with a $100 application fee and physician signature authorizing the medical need for a CPAP machine.
There are also a number of telemedicine providers who can often offer substantial savings on both the diagnosis and treatment process for sleep apnea. While these private companies may or may not work with your insurance, you should inquire about using your health savings account (HSA) or flexible spending account (FSA) with them. Also, be sure to choose a provider that offers board-certified physician guidance for your treatment.
Certain lifestyle changes may also be able to help you save money on sleep apnea treatment. Sleep apnea is often worsened by laying on your back. Changing positions to sleep on your side can be a cost-effective method to help alleviate symptoms. Sleep apnea is also often associated with being overweight, so weight loss through diet and exercise can help lessen sleep apnea symptoms without costly treatment.
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