If you have been diagnosed with sleep apnea and have been subscribed to a CPAP machine and mask to be worn while sleeping at night, then getting used to sleeping with a mask on your face is going to be difficult.

Most CPAP users have trouble to find a position that is comfortable for them to sleep in without bumping the mask out of place, causing air leaks and rendering the treatment useless. Worse yet, sleeping with a CPAP mask can lead to not being able to find a comfortable position without waking up with neck, shoulder, or back pain

Here is a look at sleep apnea, CPAP treatments for this condition, and a simple guide on how to find the best CPAP pillow or a sleep apnea pillow to allow you to get the rest you need without waking up in pain. 

What is Sleep Apnea?
Basically, sleep apnea is the starting and stopping of your breath while you are sleeping, sometimes gasping for air. There are a number of causes for this condition, but they all result in you feeling tired throughout the day due to waking up several times during the night. Once diagnosed, sleep apnea is often treated with the use of a CPAP machine and a mask. The mask is fitted over your nose and mouth, and the machine forces air into your lungs, preventing you from stopping breathing while sleeping. 

This machine is designed to help give you the oxygen you need to get a good night's sleep. However, sleeping with the CPAP mask on can often result in uncomfortable sleep due to the pressure of the mask against your face or because you are forced to sleep in such a manner that you suffer from pain or stiffness in your jaw, neck, shoulder area or back. 

These problems can cause you to wake up several times during the night to shift position in order to try and get comfortable, so you still won't be getting the sleep you need to feel more awake during the day. 

In addition, your pillow may push against the mask, causing pressure on your face or causing the mask to become slightly dislodged. This can cause an air leak that prevents the air from being forced into your lungs to maintain breathing. The solution to all of these problems is to find a CPAP pillow that meets your specific sleeping needs. 

What to Look for in a CPAP Pillow
When choosing a CPAP pillow, you need to look for one that meets your specific needs. Here are some of the things you need to consider. 

Does the Pillow Have a Hose Stabilizer?
If your CPAP mask has a hose attached, then you may want a pillow with a small strap that is used to keep the hose in one place, so it doesn't end up under your cheek, neck, or shoulder while you are sleeping. 

Is the Pillow Designed for Any Sleeping Position?
If you are one of those people who tend to shift sleeping positions during the night, you want a CPAP pillow that is designed to accommodate all different positions such as side, stomach, or back sleeping.

Does the Pillow Have Design Elements that Meets My Needs? 
When choosing a sleep apnea pillow, you want to find one with a center dimple (a slight dip in the center) that will help keep your neck properly aligned no matter the position you sleep in. 

You also want the CPAP pillow to have a recessed bottom so that your shoulders remain in proper alignment as well.

Then, of course, you may want a sleep apnea pillows with side cutouts so that the mask can fit into the cutout portion and won't be pressing against the pillow which can cause air leaks, or against the side of your face, resulting in your cheek hurting. 

Many CPAP pillows are made of memory foam and can't be washed, so make sure the covers on this pillow are easy to wash and dry so that you can rest comfortably on a clean pillow. 

You will need to shop wisely and find a pillow that meets your needs and is fits into your budget. Set a price you can afford, and don't go above that price and then start searching for the best pillows you can find within your budget limits. 

There are different types of CPAP machines and slightly different masks, so make sure you choose a pillow that is compatible with the machine. For example, if your mask is connected to a hose, then you will need a pillow that will fit your hose and still allow you to move easily. 

A CPAP machine can help you to get a better night's sleep and keep you healthier, and the right sleep apnea pillow can help that machine work for you without disrupting your sleep or causing your discomfort. 

Author's Bio: 

Hannah Edmonds is a creative and enthusiastic freelance writer who has been loving this gig for 8 years now. Her personal mission is to encourage a happier, healthier and more fulfilling life experience for people through her writing, and this is her true passion. She is very adept at details, produces only first-rate work, and avoids fluff as well as redundancy. Hannah's goal is for people to grow their knowledge so they can keep evolving and growing. She has gained a lot of experience and has honed her craft through several years of work with different websites and blogs. Aside from writing, Hannah absolutely loves to travel, read, and loves anything that pertains to sports.