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First few nights with CPAP
Hi there, I am new here and just found this forum tonight and like so many I'm well... BeyondTired... Cant-sleep-well

Finally after years of fatigue and the symptoms of my Fibromyalgia increasing, and an episode of what felt like a heart attack due to increasing fatigue and weakness my doc ordered a bunch of tests which included an over-night oxygen monitor. Yes, it came back with a diagnosis of sleep apnea.

I met with a therapist and have had my CPAP machine for 3 night. The first night I didn't seem to have any trouble falling asleep, even when I got up during the night, I was able to fall right back asleep, which is not my norm by any stretch.

Last night I had a bit of difficulty when I first put on the gear. I have nose pillows and I thought it would be the least obstructive and less claustrophobic for me. It felt when I first put it on that the pressure was too strong and I couldn't breath out against the pressure. I tried to calm myself and got off to sleep but it happened again after trying to put the mask back on after getting up to go to the washroom during the night.

Tonight I found the same thing. It is like I can't breathe out, and as silly as it may seem, I got scared and got up. I know it is early days and the machine is tracking everything so they can decide what is the best settings etc. but I don't know how to get past this feeling of panic at the moment.

All suggestions and advise would be greatly appreciated.
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Hi Beyond Tired, welcome to Apnea Board.

It would help us considerably if you could tell us some details about your treatment. In particular, make and model of machine, prescribed pressure and whether you are using EPR or flex.

The feeling of being unable to breathe against the pressure is not uncommon, and will often go away as you get accustomed to the machine. If you're using a nasal mask or pillows, you can overcome the pressure simply by opening your mouth!
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Can't tell much by the description you put under your profile.

If you include more specifics on your pressure/pressures and the machine you have (the actual model - including specific model number or name - example: for Resmed machines, S-9 is a family of machines, not a model - on Resmeds the model is a name on top of the machine; on Respironics machines, you have to take the water chamber out and turn the machine over to get the model number - Respironics makes the identification and naming convention much more complicated than it needs to be - the names on the top of the machine are not that descriptive; DeVillbiss has it included in the name on the top (Intellipap Standard, Intellipap Auto, Intellipap BiLevel S, etc). Your profile shows you have an "IRS" CPAP - that is not a type of CPAP device I recognize nor was I able to find it online. Maybe that is the supplier that you got it from?

Anyway, there are comfort features on most machines that may help. But forum members need to know what you actually have for them to better provide insight. Most current machines have a few features that might help in this case like a ramp feature that slowly increases pressure over time while you are trying to go to sleep, a mask selection feature where you can select "pillows" over say a nasal mask (when I've tried pillows, they seem to amplify pressure over what my nasal mask feels like), or EPR - expiratory pressure relief - which drops the pressure somewhat when you are not inhaling.

But to figure out what features you have available and insight on how you might use them, we need to know what hardware you are dealing with.

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Hi BeyondTired,
WELCOME! to the forum.!
I know CPAP therapy can take some getting used to. To help you get used to this new way of sleeping, wear your mask and use the machine during the evening as you read or watch tv.
Make sure you put the name of the machine you are using in your profile so people can better assist you.
Much success to you with your CPAP therapy.
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I second what the others say. Relax and don't fret. You'll get used to it after a period of time. Even if you just do four hours a night to start with, that will help get your body used to the therapy.
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It can be very helpful during your acclimation period to use the system while awake and watching TV or reading, etc. You'll get used to it much faster that way and will know exactly what to expect when lying down to sleep. Sometimes the anxiety of not knowing can amplify any small discomfort into a major deal killer. Trust me, in time you'll not notice the pressure at all.
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I have been on Remstar Auto A Flex, for one month, set at 7 to 12 pressure. .... all went well, after second trip back to the sleep clinic two days ago, it was changed to a plain cpap mcahine with constant pressure of 11, with ramp------I couldn't sleep with it at all. My blood pressure sky rocketed perhaps from the anxiety...I called the sleep clinic, they changed me back to the auto machine with the previous settings, and last night it was perfect--I feel no pressure what so ever from the machine, I breath with no effert as the machine adjust to my breathing pattern, and the auto reduces the pressure when i exhale. I love it. its by Philips, respironics, Remstar Auto A Flex--[one night on the Remstar Pro Cflex, with constant pressure of 11 I lasted maybe 15 , 20 minutes tops-took it off and sleeping with any machine, next morning my blood pressure was 160/100---back to my auto machine and old settings last night-slept like a log, blood pressure this morning 129/81 pulse 61, figure if i had not be started on a trial with the auto machine, and just straight cpap I may be in the same boat your in right now--I sure noticed the difference when I was switch for one night.. [I use a piece of cotton flannel under my silicone mask, [cut opening for mouth and nose, it works like a charm]. good luck, this forum is awesome, I just joined.
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Welcome Hi

I was surprised at first with the air pressure but it was welcomed. Maybe I'm weird. What is your EPR setting? If you can, download some software and post up some graphs.

Using FlashAir W-03 SD card in machine. Access through wifi with FlashPAP or Sleep Master utilities.

I wanted to learn Binary so I enrolled in Binary 101. I seemed to have missed the first four courses. Big Grinnie

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