Distilled water shortages have been a growing concern in the United States, as the demand for this type of water has risen in recent years. This is particularly true for those who rely on continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machines for the treatment of sleep apnea.
The water used in these machines must be distilled to prevent the growth of mold and bacteria, making a steady supply of distilled water crucial for those with sleep apnea. However, with shortages occurring in various regions of the country, it’s important to understand the cause of distilled water shortage and what steps can be taken to address it.
Causes of Shortages:
Increased demand for distilled water: As more and more people are being diagnosed with sleep apnea, the number of CPAP users are rising. According to the National Sleep Foundation, an estimated 18 million Americans have sleep apnea. This increased demand for CPAP therapy leads to a higher demand for distilled water, which is necessary for the maintenance of the CPAP equipment.
Water scarcity: Factors that limit the availability of water can lead to a shortage of distilled water. In regions where water is scarce, it becomes more difficult to produce enough distilled water to meet the demand.
Limited production capacity: Some areas may not have enough production facilities to meet the demand for distilled water. This can lead to shortages, as the supply of distilled water cannot keep up with the demand.
Natural disasters: Floods, hurricanes, and other natural disasters can disrupt the production and distribution of distilled water. This can lead to temporary shortages as the production and distribution systems are disrupted.
Covid-19: The COVID-19 pandemic has led to an increase in the demand for distilled water as many people stockpiled supplies, including distilled water, in preparation for potential shortages. This added stress on the supply chain further exacerbated the already existing shortage caused by other factors, making it difficult for sleep apnea patients to access the distilled water they need for their CPAP machines.
The Impact of Shortages on Sleep Apnea Patients:
Difficulty maintaining CPAP equipment: Without a steady supply of distilled water, sleep apnea patients may have difficulty maintaining their CPAP equipment. This can lead to an increased risk of infections, as mold and bacteria can grow in the equipment if it is not properly cleaned.
Reduced effectiveness of CPAP therapy: Without proper maintenance of the equipment, the effectiveness of CPAP therapy may be reduced. This can lead to a higher risk of complications and poorer outcomes for sleep apnea patients.
Financial burden: Sleep apnea patients may have to purchase distilled water at a premium from non-traditional sources, leading to an additional financial burden.
Stress: The uncertainty of not having a steady supply of distilled water can cause stress to sleep apnea patients who rely on CPAP therapy to manage their sleep disorders.
Solutions to Shortages:
Increasing production capacity: Building more facilities to produce distilled water can help to meet the rising demand.
Improving distribution systems: Ensuring that distilled water is distributed efficiently can help to minimize shortages.
Recycling and reusing water in CPAP machines: can reduce the overall demand for distilled water.
Investing in alternative water purification technologies: Research and development in new water purification technologies can provide a more efficient and cost-effective means of producing distilled water.
Government intervention: Government policies such as subsidies and tax breaks to water purification companies can help to increase the production and distribution of distilled water.
Companies like Aquapap, which specializes in providing CPAP water and distilled water, can also play an important role in ensuring a steady supply of distilled water for those who rely on it for their sleep apnea treatment.
Aquapap maintains a large stock of distilled water, invests in multiple water purification systems, forms partnerships with other water purification companies, and offers customer support to ensure their customers have a reliable source of distilled water.