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Does long term humidifier use affect lungs?
I have a chronic lung disease, albeit a mild form. It is a NTM infection (Mycobateria Avium Complex) and bronchaectasis. I have been on CPAP therapy for just on 12 months and prior to starting I asked my lung specialist if CPAP would be a problem. The answer was no, and I have found with the benefit of a good nights sleep, 99% of the time, my immune system has now improved. Keep the humidifier clean, and your mask etc, use distilled water and you will be fine.

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(12-05-2016, 09:32 PM)PaytonA Wrote: I have been using a humidified CPAP for 5 years now without even getting a cold. My tank cleaning is done every now and then and I top off the distilled water in the tank every evening. I am not saying that is the way everyone should do it but it is the way that I do it.

I think there is probably a golden mean here and getting obsessed with cleaning your tank every single day is perhaps more likely to add risks than reduce them.

I haven't had a cold since I retired but I put that down to 65 prior years of getting every cold out there and gaining some immunity and also the fact that I am fairly reclusive and while i do go out it's usually a quick shopping trip or a walk by myself, so I am rarely exposed. The bugs I get exposed to are generally ones that came from me in the first place.

Distilled water in a protected environment should not allow bacteria to grow for at least a week or so. Air doesn't carry bacteria. Bacteria are transmitted in drops of water from people's lungs when they cough or sneeze. A few minutes later the droplets will fall out and the air will be clean again (at least so far as bugs go).

Unless you cough or sneeze into your mask the water should remain clean for at least a week, as any bacteria that land in it from outside won't find anything to eat there. Well, unless you put a tasty snack like a leaf in the water, after which it is no longer distilled water.

Obsession with killing germs and being scrupulously clean has been associated with a rise in asthma in young children. If their immune systems are not exposed to various allergens early in life human children's immune systems start to deal with them as the enemy.

So my suggestion is, relax. Change your water every seek or so and don't put contaminents like oils or fragrent leafs in it. If you sneeze into your mask change the water just in case. And relax, because probably the worrying about bugs will, in a modern home, likely cause you more harm than the bugs ever will.

Ed Seedhouse

Your brain is not the boss.

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