Critical Care for your PAP system- What You May Have Missed
Would you believe that regular care for your PAP device and accessories plays a huge part of your quality of life ~ because it does?
Ignoring PAP care can have a perilous impact on your deep sleep, overall comfort, and solid Sleep Apnea control.
What can be done? Follow these steps:
CARING FOR YOUR MASK
Users of PAP devices must understand human skin leaves acid, oil and bacteria build up on the mask silicone. This accumulation can cause local skin irritation, redness, blisters and discomfort when the mask re-touches the face and/or nostrils.
Additionally, this layered debris on the skin causes the mask cushion/pillow (i.e. silicone) to get increasingly soft and pliable, making a tighter fitting mask necessary, which eventually hurts the face or nostrils.
Common adjustments like these have been known to cause frustration, create persistent leaking of the mask/pillows during use and give disruptive sleep patterns.
Employing a cleaning schedule by using 100% pure soap on a regular basis will make the mask re-usable, relatively bacteria-free and effective. Moreover, when a mask cushion or entire mask is replaced every six to nine months, the previously mentioned issues are controlled or non-existent.
It’s also critical to note that most insurance companies advise regular mask replacement every six to nine months. Moreover, insurances actually want you to replace your PAP mask per your policy coverage allowance(s). The dual-sided benefit is your insurance’s claim costs remain low and the PAP user remains on course for continued sleep apnea relief.
PAP filters are specially designed to protect the unit and your respiratory system by removing potentially harmful micro contaminates.
Replacing your white/fine micro contaminate filter monthly and rinsing or changing the main filter (typically a black or grey color) will provide a reduction in the incidence of inhaling airborne irritants, like pollen and spores, etc.
Some PAP devices have only one kind of filter, refer to your user manual for replacement suggestions. Otherwise, If you have airborne-related allergies, the micro contaminate filters should be replaced every two to four weeks. Doing so will reduce nasal congestion, phlegm and mucus production.
Forgetting to change your PAP filters frequently causes the PAP small motor/circuit board to work harder. Subsequently, this reduces the life expectancy of the unit, which may impose an unwanted expense on your pocketbook sooner than later..
Your PAP hose happens to be your highest risk item for developing mold, mildew, fungus and bacteria within the Sleep Apnea therapy circuit. Remember, your PAP hose is regularly vulnerable to a wet, damp, moist and warm environment. Therefore, condensation in the bend of your PAP hose is a key place for nasty bacteria, mold and fungus to develop. From this point, the whole circuit is susceptible to bacteria growth.
It makes sense to keep the entire hose clean. Most insurance company’s coverage will allow the regular replacement of the PAP hose. Their vested interest is an overall reduction in mild upper respiratory infections, nasal congestion, etc.
Remember, our respiratory system is very delicate and sensitive to airborne contaminates. And taking the step to protect yourself by replacing your PAP hose every six months is a smart choice.
The PAP water container is designed to hold and help facilitate humidity for therapeutic comfort. This simple little container serves a few additional purposes like halting dehydration of the saliva fluid in your mouth and preventing dryness of nasal passages and lungs, especially during sleep and PAP use.
PAP users do not understand that the fluid in the mouth and the nasal moisture of the nose are the only organs of the body that are designed to keep the upper respiratory system damp and moist. In order for the lung to easily expand and contract when you breathe, moisture is required. When air enters the lung, efficiency and breathing comfort is dictated by the amount of humidity passing through the entire upper respiratory tract. Since some decide to not use the PAP humidifier in a dry climate, waking up with a dry mouth and throat is likely. It is therefore clear that humidity is necessary for proper breathing in every aspect of life, even during sleep.
The PAP humidifier container is smooth polished and hypoallergenic (in most PAP devices). In most brands, it will hold up to an average of 10 ounces for a six to ten hour period of continuous rest/sleep.
Also, did you know some humidifier containers are dishwasher safe? Therefore, they can last up to a year if you keep them clean from a bacterial build up. Because of this bacteria, consider changing the humidifier chamber once a year for optimum results in your usage. Most of all, these humidifier containers are affordable and accessible.
Furthermore, let’s go one better.
Finally, you can easily appreciate the comfort your PAP system offers you every time you use it. Isn’t it worth it to maintain and care for the device that keeps you awake, sharp and refreshed?
Call 1.877.430.2727 for help.
Written and Edited by Bill Bistak B Sc.,SEO/SEM Spc, CRT
CPAP Clinic – hеаlthсаrе аt уоur hоmе
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