All One Needs To Know About How To Use CPAP Machines

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All One Needs To Know About How To Use CPAP Machines

If you have been diagnosed with sleep apnea, you have probably been advised to use a CPAP machine. However, getting used to CPAP machines may seem a bit overwhelming to first time user. Setting up a CPAP machine correctly is the first step towards relief from sleep apnea. Though CPAP equipment from different manufacturers may vary slightly, the basics remain the same. So, without further ado, here is help at hand to make your CPAP machine work perfectly.

Setting up the CPAP filter

Different types of CPAP machines have different kind of filters, such as a bacteria filter, a disposable paper filter or a foam filter or maybe all three together. A disposable filter, like a paper filter must be placed inside the machine first with a foam filter on the outside. A bacteria filter is slightly more complicated. If there is no humidifier, a bacteria filter needs to be placed directly at the air outtake of the CPAP machine. On the other hand, if you are using a humidifier, the filter must be placed at the outtake of the humidifier, instead of the CPAP machine.

Setting up the hose and mask

Most CPAP machines come a hose that has a standard 22 mm connection cuff to fit onto all CPAP masks. If you are having some trouble attaching the hose to the mask, make sure that your mask does not have a swivel in place. A swivel could be responsible for preventing proper connection.

Wearing the mask properly

One crucial point thing to keep in mind while ordering a CPAP mask is using a size guide to determine the size and shape of your face as well as keeping in mind your sleeping position. Assuming that this has been taken care of, you will need to make some adjustments to get your mask fitting right. The key to using CPAP machines correctly is getting used to your mask. Initially you may require some practice. To begin place the mask on your face and keep the straps relatively loose. Now lie on your bed like you are preparing for bed. Now, gently start pulling the straps to adjust it evenly on all sides so that you feel comfortable. If you are still not comfortable, consider using a CPAP pillow that can help you adjust your mask to your favourite sleeping position.

Setting up CPAP pressure settings

This is one less thing to worry about at your end, because CPAP machines come adjusted to the pressure settings as has been prescribed by your doctor. It is not recommended to adjust the pressure setting without consulting your doctor first. This may make your therapy less effective.

Setting up the humidifier

If you are suffering from a severe case of sleep apnea it is possible that a humidifier is not an optional piece of equipment. The essential function of a humidifier is to add moisture to CPAP therapy air. The right way to use a humidifier is to fill up the water chamber to the line. There is an imprinted plastic line that will tell you where to stop. It is recommended that you use distilled water for your humidifier. Using tap water usually leaves a film or a coating at the bottom of the chamber that becomes difficult to clean at a later date. If you have not added a humidifier to your CPAP equipment, it is strongly recommended as it reduces dryness of the nose and mouth. This in turn keeps your sinuses clean and you wake up feeling all refreshed after a restful night’s sleep.

Now that you know all about CPAP machines, here are some tips on getting used to CPAP theory. Admittedly it is not the easiest things to do and takes some getting used to. Here are a few tips to help you get a little more comfortable.

  • Get used to the mask – For starters, start wearing the mask a few hours before bed, so that you get used to the straps around your face.
  • Practice when you are awake – It is a good idea to practice breathing with your mask and machine on in a wakeful state. This will help you get used to the air pressure.
  • Locate the exhaust vents – Most users suffer from a fear of suffocation in case the CPAP machine malfunctions. You can however get over this fear by simply locating the exhaust vents during the time you are practising in a wakeful state. This will reassure you that you will not get suffocated, even if the machine stopped working hypothetically speaking.
  • Sleeping on you side – If you are not used to sleeping on one side, it is a good idea to start doing so consciously to make the usage of your CPAP machine easier. Sleeping on your back or stomach is not really conducive to the usage of CPAP machines.

Now that you have learnt all about CPAP machines, we strongly recommend that you do not delay CPAP theory. The more you postpone treatment through effective CPAP machines, the more you are exposing yourself to a plethora of health risks.

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