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Things to Expect on your First Night with CPAP

What is CPAP Therapy

Your First night with CPAP?

If you have just been diagnosed with sleep apnea, then your doctor would have prescribed CPAP or Continuous Positive Airway Pressure as a cure, CPAP therapy involves the use of pressurized air to keep your airway open throughout the night, this will prevent “sleep apnea” a medical condition wherein you will stop breathing many times in the night. Once diagnosed, you will be forced to use a CPAP machine every single time you sleep. If this is the first time you are going to start using the machine then you should be aware of the things to expect on your first night with CPAP.

Things to Expect On the First Night with CPAP

  1. Leakage: Leakage of the pressurized air can occur due to a loose mask or due to a hole in the tubing etc. Either way if this pressurized air comes in contact with your skin it will cause irritation.
  2. Adjusting to the air: If it is your first time breathing pressurized air, then your body will take some time to adjust to it. Keep using the CPAP machine for a few days and your body will adjust, if your body still does not adjust then you may need to purchase a Bi-PAP or APAP machine.
  3. Things to expect on your first night with a CPAP machine

    Mask: The mask you use for the CPAP therapy will play a very important role in your compliance with the therapy thus affecting the overall efficiency and efficacy of the CPAP treatment. CPAP masks are available in different materials and designs so make sure you get a mask which fits you comfortably, additionally if you prefer to breathe through your mouth get a full face mask.

  4. Adjusting to the mask: As with a new shoe, your body will immediately reject anything new, thus the first night you sleep with the CPAP mask on, you will feel weird and you may not be able to sleep. This is normal just stick to the treatment and try using the mask during the daytime for a few hours to let your body adjust.
  5. Dryness in the mouth: When you breathe pressurized air, it may cause dryness in your mouth and air passageway. Your body will moisturize air as it enters the nose, this process is much tougher for pressurized air and if you breathe through your mouth you will exacerbate the issue. The best cure for this is to purchase a CPAP machine with a humidifier which will add moisture to the air.
  6. Sores: If you find sores on your nose or on your skin it means that the mask you are using is not perfect, so talk to your doctor about the available options and change it.
  7. Removal of mask: At times until your body adjusts to the mask, you may remove the CPAP mask at night without knowing. If this occurs a lot, purchase a full face mask with a strap on the back, this will keep the mask in place throughout the night.
  8. Noise: Most CPAP machines are very quite (26-30 db sound) but if you are used to a pin drop silence as you sleep, then you may need time to get used to the noise. Another option is to use an ear plug. Finally if you think that your machine is producing more noise than it should then contact your doctor or CPAP manufacturer and let them check the machine for any defects.
  9. Stuffiness in your nose: This problem also occurs at times due to the breathing of pressurized air, using a humidifier will solve this as well.

The above are the things you need to be aware of on the first time using CPAP.