How Do I Use a CPAP Machine? What you need to know about your new CPAP machine. Tips for getting used to your new bedtime routine. CPAPMyWay.com makes using a CPAP machine easy and affordable, whether you’re brand new at this or you’ve been using one for years.
Got sleep apnea? Then you’re probably wondering how to use a CPAP machine.
It’s not hard to learn how to use a CPAP machine – and the benefits you’ll get from sleeping better and not gasping for air throughout the night more than worth the effort. After all, sleep apnea is leaving you feeling exhausted all day, making it easier to fall asleep at work than at night in the comfort of your own bed. Then there’s the whole issue of your snoring, which may be a bit of a sore spot – or at least a source of some family teasing – with your bedmate.Meet Your New Sleepover Buddy, the CPAP Machine
If you’ve been diagnosed with sleep apnea, the very next words out of your doctor’s mouth were probably something about you needing to get and learn how to use a CPAP machine. Then the next thing you know, you’ve got this strange new machine, a mask, and some other supplies – and you’re supposed to sleep in this contraption every night.
Relax. It’s not going to be a hard adjustment. If you’re like most of our customers, it won’t be long before you’re getting the best sleep you’ve had for years or even decades. You’ll breathe better – and more quietly – as you sleep. You’ll get a solid night’s sleep rather than spending it gasping for air (whether that wakes you up or not). You’ll feel more rested and less irritable or depressed. Sounds like a fair trade-off for learning how to use a CPAP machine.
Your CPAP equipment consists of a few parts – some should last you a long time and others need to be replaced regularly:
- Your CPAP Machine This small machine, about the size of a box of tissues, will fit right on your bedside table and plugs into a wall outlet. It works by drawing air in, compressing it, and blowing it through some tubing, through your mask, and into your airways to keep them open, so you can breathe. The machine will likely last you for years if you take good care of it.
- Your CPAP Filters The filters work a lot like your air conditioning filters do – they keep pollutants from entering the CPAP system and working their way into your lungs. Some filters need to be changed daily, weekly, or monthly. You’ll want to check your manufacturer’s recommendations.
- Your CPAP Tubing The tubing is long enough – and flexible enough – to reach from the CPAP machine to your CPAP mask, even if you roll over in your sleep. It needs to be replaced periodically to ensure that you’re breathing clean, fresh air.
- Your CPAP Mask Cushion This is the part of the equipment that rests on your face and attaches to the tubing. The cushions are made of silicon, which makes them comfortable as they conform to your face and create a seal so the pressurized air gets where it needs to go. Silicon gets hard after some time being exposed to the air, so you’ll need to replace your cushions monthly.
Using Your CPAP Machine
It may take a period of adjustment to get used to strapping on your mask, flipping a switch to start the flow of pressurized air, and settling in for a good night’s sleep. It’s not that it’s uncomfortable – it’s just that it’s new.
Many CPAP users find it easier to adjust to the sensation of the mask, hose, and machine by taking it slowly. Start by holding the mask in position with your hand rather than strapping it on. Then when you feel comfortable, add the air and get used to the sensation. When you’re ready, strap it on and wear it for a while as you watch television or read. Just do this for brief periods at first, and eventually you’ll reach the point where you’re almost not even aware of the equipment.
Once you go through the adjustment phase, make sure you use your CPAP machine every night when you go to bed – and also, if you manage to squeeze in a nap during the day. However, you might soon be surprised to realize that desperate craving for a nap starts to go away. The better you sleep at night, the more energy you’ll have all day.
If we can help you learn how to use your CPAP machine, figure out how to adjust your mask for maximum comfort, or help you choose the package of CPAP supplies that makes the most sense for you, just let us know. We’re here to help, and want to make using your CPAP machine hassle-free and affordable.