Generally speaking, people who have bought a CPAP have had a trial for a little while, worked out what equipment they are using and are starting to notice some benefits from wearing the mask overnight.
The first few months after that initial get used to period, are often a pretty easy time for CPAP users.
Once we get through these months, there are common questions that pop up.
I am feeling better, do I still need to use my CPAP?
Generally speaking, yes. CPAP is a therapy that keeps your airway open during sleep, preventing disruptions through the night. Stopping CPAP means the disruptions return, which leads to inefficient sleep and symptom return.
I don’t seem to be feeling as good on CPAP as when I started. Why is this?
Because CPAP can work so quickly, the change you notice at the start of therapy can be really significant. The improvements will eventually plateau as you cannot keep exponentially improving how you feel from using CPAP.
This is normal, but important to note. After a certain amount of time (will vary form person to person) how you feel will be maintained rather than improved upon from wearing CPAP.
It is also important to note that CPAP is not the magic answer for all of life’s problems. There is no doubt quality sleep improves the quality of life, but other factors still need to be managed appropriately. Diet, exercise, stress management are just a few things that can contribute to how you feel.
I have been using my CPAP for around a year now and it just doesn’t seem to be working as well. Why is this?
CPAP equipment needs to be maintained and updated from time to time. In our CPAP reviews, we will often see equipment that is damaged, stretched or warn out which leads to poor performance. Once machines start to get dirty, noisy or uncomfortable, we find that usage will often wane with it and the benefits from using are then gone.
The most efficient way is to replace parts for your equipment. Masks will often benefit from a new cushion or headgear. The filter in your machine will require changing from time to time. As will the tubing that runs from the machine to your mask.
Maintaining your equipment and replacing parts from time to time will certainly help in using your CPAP equipment long term.
When I go away, I don’t take my CPAP. After a few nights I start to feel tired again. Should I be using my CPAP machine every night?
In the ideal world, yes it would be ideal to use your machine every night. What does eventually happen with a lot of our CPAP users, is that they will encounter situations where they can’t use it.
This will then be used as a bit of a test on how one feels without using CPAP. Some people feel horrible after missing a night, some a few nights and some can get away with it for longer periods. Until you miss, you won’t really know. As mentioned, it is advisable to use every night that you can.
How can I make life easier for when I travel?
It depends on the issues you encounter. ResMed have recently releases the ResMed AirMini which is a compact, travel device. If space in your luggage is an issue, then this small device could be your alternative. If you are away from power, there are batteries available. There are alternatives to CPAP also, should using a CPAP machine be completely impractical.
How often should I change equipment?
This will again vary on many factors. Cleanliness of your environment, how well you maintain your equipment and your skin will all be factors. Generally speaking, we advise:
Filters: 3 months.
Tubes: 12-18 months.
Humidifier tub: 12-18 months
Masks: 12-18 months – mask parts are available
Machine: 5+ years
These numbers are all very general indicators. If you start hearing more noise, something becomes uncomfortable, there is discolouration or wear and tear, odours, then these are good prompters for a change.
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us. 1800799950, firstname.lastname@example.org or jump on LiveChat.