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Best Pillows for Use With a CPAP Machine

Updated July 16, 2019

 

Rank Product Highlights
1

Contour CPAP Bed Pillow

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  • Very much supports stomach sleeping without inhibiting the mask
  • Cradles head and neck for back sleepers
  • Very adjustable for side sleepers
2

Hullo Buckwheat Pillow

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  • May work for some stomach sleepers
  • Helps with migraines
  • Shapes extremely well
3

VISCO LOVE Therapeutic Pillow

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  • Excellent support of airways to reduce snoring
  • Great for combo sleepers
  • Very breathable
4

FitPlus Premium Wedge Pillow

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  • Reduces pressure points
  • Can be used for leg elevation as well
  • Supportive of CPAP machines
5

TEMPUR-Neck Pillow

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  • Long lasting
  • Sizing chart very accurate
  • Helps alleviate neck pain
6 If you have been asking yourself what kind of pillow do I need, then this article can help you find that answer.

Coop Bamboo Cooling Pillow

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  • Fully adjustable to all sleep positions
  • Washable
  • Great for heavier bodies
7

EnduriMed CPAP Pillow

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  • Reduces pressure points from mask
  • Excellent neck and head support
  • Works with multiple mask styles

Waking in the morning feeling more tired than when you went to bed is a good indication of a night full of interruptions. Sometimes this means you have poor posture support, maybe it pertains to a busy mind, or maybe you are struggling with airway obstructions- causing you to snore, or worse yet, pause your breathing altogether as you sleep.

A diagnosis of sleep apnea is not a bad thing, in fact, if you have been diagnose dit means you can better go about treating the underlying causes. There are a few things you can do to support a better night’s rest if you do have this condition, including making use of a prescription for a CPAP machine. For an even better rest, and proper use of a CPAP, you will want to choose the best CPAP pillow that supports both your sleep posture and the machine through the night. Below, our CPAP pillow reviews provide a few ideas to help you in making a choice.

What is Sleep Apnea?

Sleep Apnea is characterized by an interruption to a person’s breathing through the night. It is a diagnosis that is as alarming as it sounds, although most people subconsciously wake briefly and begin breathing again. This does create an interrupted night’s sleep, which overall, is incredibly unhealthy in the long run. There are three different types of Sleep Apnea categories, of which most people who struggle with alleviating snoring problems, and continually wake feeling more tired than they went to bed as, eventually get diagnosed with.

Obstructive Sleep Apnea

Characterized by a relaxation of the soft tissues within your throat and your tongue, obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) creates an obstruction to your airways, forcing you to snore, wake, or stop breathing altogether for short periods of time. Although CPAP machines may be recommended for this, sometimes choosing the best mattress and pillow for posture support can help alleviate the worst of the symptoms.

Central Sleep Apnea

Central sleep apnea (CSA) is more complicated to both diagnose and treat and is defined by an interruption of brain signals that control your breathing. Many people who suffer from CSA do so because of other chronic issues that may be seriously ill with. It is not uncommon to find CSA a problem that goes hand in hand with Parkinson’s disease, stroke, heart failure, diseases and injuries to the brainstem, kidney failure, arthritis, and certain drug use.

Complex Sleep Apnea Syndrome

Complex sleep apnea may also be known as treatment-emergent sleep apnea, and is when both OSA and CSA are the cause of symptoms. Obviously this is a complicated issue that requires different treatment approaches to try and solve, and the definition itself is somewhat fluid within the medical field as doctors attempt to better diagnose and treat it.

What is a CPAP Machine?

CPAP stands for Continuous Positive Airway Pressure, and is a therapy that is considered the best choice for treating sleep apnea that has continued to be problematic despite other supportive airway choices. A CPAP machine is a small machine that has a motorized fan that draws air from from the room, pressurizes it, and delivers it in the supportive setting you have programed it for.

It also includes a humidification chamber that provide warm, moist air to soothe nasal passages and upper airway to help avoid drying, discomfort, and swelling- all problematic causes to snoring and airway obstruction. The airflow is gently forced into your airways through the night through a flexible hose that attaches to a mask that covers your nose and mouth. The machines try to accommodate all sleep positions, and allow for movement with the use of long, flexible hoses and other materials, but care must be taken not to pinch or cut off the airflow as you sleep- hence why certain positions are recommended, as are pillow specifically designed for CPAP machine compatibility.

What Position is Best to Sleep in With Sleep Apnea?

Obviously people who sleep in all positions suffer from sleep apnea, but the recommended position for those suffering from it is to sleep on your side, or stomach as it is less likely that your airway will become obstructed as your tongue and other soft tissues found in the throat are unable to fall backwards.

Stomach sleepers are faced with their own issues, however, pertaining to poor cervical alignment that results in back, hip, and neck pain. But if this is your preferred position, there are supportive ways to make it work, such as the Falcon position.

Sleep apnea is often worsened by back sleeping due to how gravity pulls upon the soft tissues of the throat and the tongue, although there are supportive pillows to help with this as well if this is a preferred position.

What Position is Best for a CPAP Machine?

No matter whether you are a back, stomach, or side sleeper you can take advantage of what is most comfortable for you when using a CPAP machine. The key for proper use is in the type of mask you use. If you have been prescribed a CPAP machine, you will need to find both a mask, and a pillow that supports your position.

How do Pillows Help Support CPAP Machines?

When supporting your body through the night you want to choose a pillow that works with your sleep position for proper cervical alignment. Thinner pillows work best for back and stomach sleepers, and thicker, firmer choices are often best for side sleepers. But when you take into account the addition of a CPAP machine, you also need to consider the location of the machine and the tube that connects to your mask.

There may be a more limited array of choices to choose from when considering this added factor, but there are still choices. In fact, there are many reviews pertaining to the best pillow for sleep apnea, as well as for CPAP users.

What to Consider When Choosing a CPAP Compatible Pillow

Sleep apnea is already an overwhelming diagnosis, as it is a bit scary to think that you are spending your night in various states of unrest due to a lack of oxygen. When prescribed the use of a CPAP, and the thought of having to now address sleep position, and the various products that go along with it, can add to your general anxiety. But with a few simple tips going into your research, you should be able to better address your needs without feeling overwhelmed.

What is your natural sleep position?
As mentioned, there is no need to try and introduce a new sleep position on top of everything else. Chances are your body will fall into your old position through the night, so address what is most comfortable for you. Look for pillows that are made for your sleep position and then research if it works with the machine.

Do you sleep warm?
Various material can create heat sinks, and if you already sleep warm, this could be contributing to your sleep interruptions. Again, focus on your sleep comfort and look for pillows that breath well, or contain cooling properties, such as gel infused foam layers, natural materials, and consumer reviews pertaining to this detail.

Do you wake with aches and pains?
Poor posture is not the only thing that contributes to waking in pain- not resting properly doesn’t allow your body to heal. Body comfort is especially important when taking advantage of the support a CPAP machine can provide, and you might want to consider using more than one pillow, or differing types in conjunction with a CPAP pillow.

Pillows are so much more than just a place to rest your head. Soft, malleable pillow position allows for pressure relief, lift hips and knees, and help keep you in position through the night. Body pillows are also worth considering to keep your whole body well supported.

Top 8 Best CPAP Compatible Pillows Reviews

Some of our top reviewed pillows have some of the most supportive cpap nasal pillow masks reviews associated with them as well. We have intermixed those pillows in with other types of top rated CPAP pillow reviews below to provide you with more detailed comfort accounts pertaining to sleep position and snoring support.

1. Contour Products CPAPMax 2.0 CPAP Bed Pillow

OVERVIEW

  • Filling- Memory foam and fiberfill layers
  • Loft- Adjustable
  • Comfort Positions- All
  • Warranty- 2 year

The Contour Products CPAPMAx 2.0 is a revolutionary pillow that is designed in layers to not only accommodate all sleep positions, but also work with all mask types and brands. It also can be reversed to provide differing comfort surfaces to better fit personal preferences. One side has a breathable, 3D mesh memory foam, and the other a plush, fiber filled layer.

The contoured shape provides room for your mask to rest unhindered, and with adjustable layers ranging from 2 ¼ to 5 ¼ inches in height, you can customize your overall comfort experience. The pressure free zones built into the pillow keeps the hose from pulling and shifting the mask through the night.

Pros

  • Very much supports stomach sleeping without inhibiting the mask
  • Cradles head and neck for back sleepers
  • Very adjustable for side sleepers

Cons

  • May be a bit firm for some preferences
  • May be too small for side to side sleeper

Who Should Purchase this Pillow

This pillow is designed to meet a wide range of users, and with true customizable options, is worth a good look by anyone using a CPAP machine. It is one of the only contoured pillows designed to be personalized for comfort, which makes it stand above many of the rest that boast a similar shape.

2. Hullo Buckwheat Pillow

OVERVIEW

  • Filling- Buckwheat
  • Loft- Adjustable
  • Comfort Positions- All
  • Warranty- 60 day money back

Buckwheat pillows are considered a supportive pillow with use of a CPAP machine due to how they can be specifically shaped, and how well they hold their shape. Hullo Buckwheat pillows use organically sourced hulls, which provide a giving, yet firm and capable support. This particular pillow is also adjustable, and you can remove, add, and refresh your hulls as needed though a durable steel zipper.

Popular with snorers due to the proper support it lends, it helps keep airways open and allows for a stable sleep environment. It does take some time to get used to the different feel of the pillow and the overall adjustability, but consumers love the practicality of it once they have found their perfect sleep sweet spot.

Pros

  • May work for some stomach sleepers
  • Helps with migraines
  • Shapes extremely well

Cons

  • Heavy weight
  • Noise and feel takes time to get used to

Who Should Purchase this Pillow

Aside from the adjustability, this pillow is also offered in 3 different sizes for body shape and size, and personal preference. Because of how well it can be shaped and hold CPAP machinery in a protected like state, it is a great choice to check out.

Read our full review.

3. VISCO LOVE Celliant Sleep Therapeutic Wellness Pillow

OVERVIEW

  • Filling- Memory foam
  • Loft- contoured
  • Comfort Positions- side and back
  • Warranty- 30 day warehouse returns

This contoured pillow is created specifically to help address airway issues and spinal alignment. The higher sides, and highly responsive foam allows your weight to be cradled in comfort, all while allowing the unique needs of CPAP users to be addressed. The foam is further channeled to allow for excellent airflow and provide an cooler night’s sleep.

Back sleepers can rest easily with neck support, and side sleepers can take advantage of both the centered compression, or the sides depending their CPAP mask compatibility needs. The shaping also keeps from compressing too much that may pinch your hoses, or flattening out and removing the support you need for various positions.

Pros

  • Excellent support of airways to reduce snoring
  • Great for combo sleepers
  • Very breathable

Cons

  • May be too high for some people
  • May have slight offgassing

Who Should Purchase this Pillow

This is a great choice for back and side sleepers, or even combo sleepers who sleep in both positions for better cervical support. The firmness is giving, but keeps its shape which makes it more supportive of CPAP machine use.

4. FitPlus Premium Wedge Pillow

OVERVIEW

  • Filling- Memory foam/ polyurethane foam layers
  • Loft- ~7.5
  • Comfort Positions- back and side
  • Warranty- 30 day warehouse returns

Even though back speepoing is not recommended for those who suffer from sleep apnea, it is hard to change your sleep position sleeping habits, and sometime sit is best to look for pillow shatt will better support this position. Edge pillows are one such example as they help elevate your upper body when laying on your back. This allows gravity to work less upon your airways to help keep them open.

The 1.5 inch memory foam surface allows for a soft, contouring comfort, all while the high density foam below keeps your body in a gently upslope position. This also helps keep your spine aligned, and can be conducive to alleviating many other ailments, such as acid reflux, snoring, and allergies to name a few.

Pros

  • Reduces pressure points
  • Can be used for leg elevation as well
  • Supportive of CPAP machines

Cons

  • High slope
  • Firm
  • Cover zipper not very good

Who Should Purchase this Pillow

Back sleeps may want to give a wedge pillow a try when using a CPAP machine as it serves two purposes: it helps keep the airway open more naturally, and also allows for uninterrupted use of the machine.

5. TEMPUR-Neck Pillow

OVERVIEW

  • Filling- memory foam
  • Loft- variable due to size choices
  • Comfort Positions- Side and Back
  • Warranty- 5 years

Tempur-Pedic is known for their all body support in relation to cervical alignment through their use of innovative designs and variable memory foam comforts. Their Tempur-Neck design is available in three different sizes to take into account different body shapes and sizes, and their fitting guide is an excellent reference that takes into account both sleep position and body shape and height for a better fit. It is made specifically for help with keeping airways open and allowing proper posture.

The raised sides are specific to neck support, and with each side lifted at different heights, you can better choose what works best for you. The softer foam responds well to weight and heat, but still provides an uplifting, firmer support. It also has a plush, mico-vented cover specific to an increase in air flow and overall pillow breathability.

Pros

  • Long lasting
  • Sizing chart very accurate
  • Helps alleviate neck pain

Cons

  • May have slight off-gassing
  • May be too firm for some people
  • Contouring will be affected by room temperature

Who Should Purchase this Pillow

The shaping of this pillow lends itself well to the use of a CPAP machine as it is firmer, and provides both back and side sleeping choice comfort without worry of pinching or rolling of the machine hose.

Read our full review.

6. Coop Home Goods Adjustable Loft Bamboo Cooling Pillow

OVERVIEW

  • Filling- Shredded memory foam and poly fiber blend
  • Loft- Adjustable
  • Comfort Positions- All
  • Warranty- 30 day trial period

Adjustable pillows are an excellent choice for those who use a CPAP machine as they can be influenced to create a more firm feel, soft feel, or shaped to fit more personal needs. If sleeping with a more traditional shaped pillow is more your style, but you struggle with the use of a CPAP machine, then you should research how well an adjustable choice may fit your needs. Many shredded foam, and bamboo style pillows have these qualities- some of our own tops picks can be seen here.

The Coop Home Goods Bamboo Pillow is cooling, very adjustable, and provides a comfortable plush sink without sacrificing support. The bamboo cover is highly breathable, and provides an additional, plush and giving comfort no matter how you manipulate it for comfort.

Pros

  • Fully adjustable to all sleep positions
  • Washable
  • Great for heavier bodies

Cons

  • Slight offgassing
  • May become lumpy overtime
  • Firm feel with higher loft

Who Should Purchase this Pillow

Adjustable pillows are great alternatives for people who struggle to find a pillow that fits their particular needs. They are a decent choice for CPAP machine users as it also can be manipulated to help better accommodate the hoses and masks for a more comfortable sleep.

Read our full review.

7. TEMPUR-Embrace Pillow

OVERVIEW

  • Filling- Shredded poly foam, and foam pad
  • Comfort: Stomach/Back/Side
  • Density: Plush
  • Cooling: supportive
  • Warranty: 5 year

Contoured and shaped pillows have become very popular to use with CPAP machines as they allow for uninhibited hose movement. The Tempur-Embrace pillow is incredibly unique as it was created specifically to help address certain comfort issues with all sleep positions. The X-shape is very supportive of CPAP machines in all positions, and the softer, malleable shredded memory foam can be slightly shaped for specific areas of support.

A thin, solid foam pad helps the pillow keep its overall shape, but doesn’t infringe on the pliability. It is highly responsive, and is considered a great choice for combination sleepers, especially those who turn from the side to stomach as it allows for shoulder support.

Pros

  • Provides good neck support
  • Soft comfort
  • Unique size supports posture

Cons

  • Takes some getting used to
  • May have slight off-gassing

Who Should Purchase this Pillow

The unique design and use may take a little getting used to, but the overall feel and shape is well worth considering for CPAP machine users, and for body comfort.

Read our full review.

8. EnduriMed Contour CPAP Pillow

OVERVIEW

  • Filling- memory foam
  • Loft- 6 inches
  • Comfort Positions- back and side
  • Warranty- 1 year

This innovative, contoured and shaped pillow is made specifically with variation in firm, supportive comfort to fit a wide variety of sleep needs pertaining to the use of a CPAP mask and machine hose. Perfect for back and side sleepers (and some stomach sleepers as well according to reviews), this pillow is also great for side to side movement with cutouts for mask and hose support in arch of the 4 corners of the pillow. You can also flip the pillow around for varying overall pillow side heights to accommodate a more sizes of people.

The memory foam is a highly responsive foam that allows for gentle sink and support. This reduces pressure points from the mask, helps keep it from slipping and air leaks, and provides less interference with movement.

Pros

  • Reduces pressure points from mask
  • Excellent neck and head support
  • Works with multiple mask styles

Cons

  • May be offgassing
  • May not be supportive enough for some side sleepers
  • Indentations may not be big enough for all hose sizes

Who Should Purchase this Pillow

If you have struggled with finding a pillow to support your machine and associated hose and mask, this is a pillow worth considering. Many people who have used this pillow have mentioned it was a last resort to other variations and are happy with the results.

Conclusion

Obviously, as with any other pillow choice, you need to first look towards the ones that you know will support your sleep position, help keep you stable through the night, and allow for collaborative use with a CPAP machine. As you can see, there are actually many variations of pillows available to you, some of which we can personally speak on concerning general comfort, and airway support.

Be sure to consider the type of mask you use as well, as some work better with certain types of materials to help alleviate pressure points. If you have any suggestions concerning pillow use and CPAP machines, we’d love to hear your opinions in the comments below.