Sleep apnea is a serious sleep disorder that impacts at least 18 million Americans. People who suffer from this sleep disorder have episodes, referred to as “apneas,” when they stop breathing for from a few seconds to a minute at a time. People who suffer from more serious cases of sleep apnea can have up to 60 apneas in an hour. Many people around the country have sleep apnea that has not been diagnosed. It has been estimated that at least one in 50 people fall into this category. This is a serious condition and causes people’s risk of stroke to jump by a factor of four. Individuals who suffer from this have a risk of heart disease that is triple that for people without sleep apnea. The current “gold standard” for treatment is called continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) therapy. The problem is that many people never get used to using their CPAP masks. Even Resmed CPAP masks can be hard to get used to. When people do not use their CPAP machines, they never get the benefits. Here are some ways to get used to your CPAP machine:
- Wear the mask when you are not sleeping. Part of the problem people have with Resmed CPAP masks is just the act of getting used to wearing something on their face. If you try to get used to wearing your CPAP mask at other times of the day or when you are watching television or reading, you may find it easier to wear when you go to fall asleep. The more comfortable you can get wearing the mask, the more likely you are to keep wearing it and using your sleep apnea machine. This will help ensure that you get all of the health benefits.
- Every time you lie down to sleep, you should use your machine. If you need a nap, the Resmed CPAP masks should be put on and used. When you go to bed at night, you will find the experience of falling asleep while using the CPAP system a lot easier to do if you have been using it every time you get any sleep.
- Ramp up for more comfort. CPAP machines work by forcing air into the lungs of the sleep apnea sufferer. Some people have a real problem getting used to the pressure that is used to do this. If that is something that you struggle with, you can use the “ramp up” feature that is found on most CPAP machines. As you fall asleep, the machine starts out on a low setting but that builds after you fall asleep.
- Get a CPAP mask that fits correctly. Resmed CPAP masks that do not fit will be uncomfortable at best and completely useless at worst. When the masks are too large, you will end up putting the strap too tight and that can be very uncomfortable. When you get one that is too small, you will not get the right pressure from the machine, nor will you get the health benefits that come along with this kind of device. You need to talk to the people at the place where you purchase it to get the right size. Get the right mask and you will have a much better CPAP experience.
- Clean the parts on a regular basis. Warm, moist air circulates through the CPAP supplies and parts, making it the perfect place for bacteria to thrive. It can also develop an unpleasant smell and taste that will make you never want to use the device. To combat this, you should make sure you keep everything as clean as possible. The experts at the sleep center can tell you how frequently they think each part needs to be cleaned.
- Use the humidifier. Many people who use CPAP machines complain that their throat and nose get dried out using the device. To prevent this from happening to you, you can use the humidifier feature that most of these machines have. You can also use a saline nasal spray for problems with dry noses from CPAP machines.
Staying healthy with sleep apnea means you have to use the CPAP machine as directed. These tips can help with that.