A CPAP machine is an excellent treatment for people with sleep apnea problems. For the uninitiated, it stands for Continuous Positive Airway Pressure, which helps people breathe easily and regularly while sleeping. It works by increasing the air pressure in the throat, preventing your airway from collapsing so you can inhale without constriction.
The machine essentially consists of a hose and mask that are used to regulate and maintain constant and steady air pressure. However, the problem is that there might be some issues with the machine itself or how you’re wearing it.
In this article, we will share five common issues with CPAP machines and what you can do to address them:
1. Wearing the Wrong CPAP Mask
One major problem that you may face is buying a particular machine and ending up wearing the wrong mask. The chances are that the mask itself doesn’t fit you. As you may or may not know, there are various types of machines available in the market based on sizes and styles. One issue is the mask style with certain features that can make you feel claustrophobic. Another issue is with the mask size, which may not entirely suit your mouth. Ultimately, it’s best to work closely with your doctor and CPAP supplier to get the right mask for the best fit.
2. Difficulty Adjusting to Using the CPAP Machine
Another problem is not getting used to wearing your machine. Sure, it may take a little while for you to be comfortable using your device at night, but you should get accustomed to wearing it after some time. If you’re having a hard time adjusting, you can try to wear the mask and hose with the device turned on during the day while you’re still awake. Check to see if your mask and pressure are right by wearing it for a few weeks. Then, once you get comfortable doing so, start using the device every time you go to sleep.
3. Being Claustrophobic
Wearing the CPAP mask for the first time can make you uncomfortable, and it can be all the more problematic if you’re a bit claustrophobic. Similar to the previous point, be sure to practice wearing the mask while you’re awake. Start wearing the mask, then do so with straps, and soon with the machine turned on. You’ll be surprised at how you’ll get used to wearing it eventually. However, if it doesn’t help, be sure to seek assistance from your doctor immediately.
4. Skin Irritation or Pressure Sores
The problem with an ill-fitting mask is that you may not get the air pressure you need, which can end up irritating your skin and blowing air into your eyes, leaving them dry or teary. When confronted with this problem, adjust the pads and straps to get the right fit. If it doesn’t work at all, contact your doctor to see if they have a different mask size that works for you.
5. Unintentional Removal of CPAP Device at Night
There are instances when you’ll wake up in the middle of the night and find that the mask has been unintentionally removed. To address this situation, you have to ensure you get the right fit for your mask so that it doesn’t easily come off. Depending on the severity of your sleep apnea, you might even need to set an alarm partway through the night to wake up and check that you’re still wearing it.
Work with a Sleep Professional
A CPAP machine is meant to be the best remedy for your obstructive sleep apnea. This treatment is vital in preventing daily complications, such as consistent daytime fatigue and heart problems. If you are facing any issues with your CPAP machine, as mentioned above, be sure to address them right away. Ultimately, it’s best to work with your sleep doctor for proper advice and to get the right device for your situation!
Sleep Clinic in Jacksonville, FL
Our sleep clinic in Jacksonville, FL, is the only sleep facility in North Florida with a team of board-certified specialists committed to improving the quality of people’s sleep. If you have sleep apnea and need recommendations for a CPAP machine, get in touch with us today to see how we can help. We offer an individualized approach to help people overcome their sleep problems!