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First night - Claustrophobic
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Crysti Offline

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Posts: 10
Joined: Apr 2014

Machine: Intellipap AutoPap
Mask Type: Nasal pillows
Mask Make & Model: Aloha
Humidifier: unsure
CPAP Pressure: unsure
CPAP Software: Not using software Other Software

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Sex: Female
Location: Florida

Post: #1
First night - Claustrophobic
Hi all! I'm so happy to have found this forum. I am eager to read all of the threads and find helpful tidbits of information.

My husband and I were both recently diagnosed with sleep apnea. I was shocked that I had it. I knew he did. My results were worse than his! During both parts of my sleep study, I hardly slept at all. The night I tested with the CPAP, I only slept 2 hours. I never thought I was claustrophobic until they put that mask on me! I freaked out and felt like I couldn''t breathe (which seems strange to me since the machine is forcing air into my face).

Do you have any advice for how to overcome this phobia? Tonight will be my first night with my machine. I have a nasal mask, probably because there was absolutely no way I was letting them near me with the full face mask.

Thanks for any and all words of advice!
04-30-2014 03:18 PM
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sibertiger Offline

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Posts: 20
Joined: Apr 2014

Machine: Philips Respironics System 1 DS560TS
Mask Type: Full face mask
Mask Make & Model: Resmed Quattro Air
Humidifier: Came with PRS1
CPAP Pressure: 10-16
CPAP Software: SleepyHead

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Sex: Male
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Post: #2
RE: First night - Claustrophobic
They actually make a full face mask, specifically for claustrophobia. Its the Philips Total Face Mask.
04-30-2014 03:24 PM
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Crysti Offline

Members

Posts: 10
Joined: Apr 2014

Machine: Intellipap AutoPap
Mask Type: Nasal pillows
Mask Make & Model: Aloha
Humidifier: unsure
CPAP Pressure: unsure
CPAP Software: Not using software Other Software

Other Comments:

Sex: Female
Location: Florida

Post: #3
RE: First night - Claustrophobic
(04-30-2014 03:24 PM)sibertiger Wrote:  They actually make a full face mask, specifically for claustrophobia. Its the Philips Total Face Mask.

Thanks! I'm gonna give the nasal mask a go before I call my RT and ask her to change it. It didn't feel quite as bad as the full face mask. Although, when I had it on, the pressure was only at 4. They were unable to get a good reading to determine what my pressure should be, which is why I have an Auto.

I'm just nervous about my first night trying to sleep with it on. Maybe it won't be as bad as I think it is going to be.
04-30-2014 03:31 PM
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trish6hundred Offline

Advisory Members

Posts: 6,430
Joined: May 2012

Machine: Resmed S9 AutoSet for Her
Mask Type: Full face mask
Mask Make & Model: Fisher & Paykel Simplus
Humidifier: H5i Heated Humidifier
CPAP Pressure: 10 - 7-20 Cm H2O
CPAP Software: Not using software

Other Comments: I started CPAP in 2008. Totally blind since birth.

Sex: Female
Location: Missouri, USA

Post: #4
RE: First night - Claustrophobic
Hi Crysti,
WELCOME! to the forum.!
You might try to mask up and use your machine during the evening as you watch tv and see if that will help you get used to it.
Hang in there for more suggestions and best of luck to both you and your husband and your CPAP therapy.

trish6hundred
04-30-2014 03:36 PM
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ImaSurvivor Offline

Preferred Members-2

Posts: 322
Joined: Nov 2013

Machine: ResMed S9 Auto
Mask Type: Nasal pillows
Mask Make & Model: Swift FX
Humidifier: H5i Heated Humidifier, ClimateLine Tubing
CPAP Pressure: 10
CPAP Software: SleepyHead

Other Comments: Moderate Sleep Apnea, Began using CPAP 11/27/2013

Sex: Female
Location: New York State

Post: #5
RE: First night - Claustrophobic
Welcome Crysti, glad you have found us. We have all been there so don't be discouraged. As trish said, sitting up with it in the evening may help. Also, you are using a nasal mask but you might have good luck with nasal pillows instead. They are even less on your face than the nasal mask. I use the Swift FX. There are other brands too. It involves a strap on the back of my head and one over the top. The nasal pillows is just a little cushion that sits just below your nostrils.

I didn't do well with the generic full face mask or even the nasal mask they used on me during titration. The tech finally told me she had a few samples of Wisp Nasal Mask. It was light years better and more comfortable than the generic ones they started me out with. When I received my machine the next morning, the respiratory therapist noticed a red mark on the bridge of my nose and suggested trying the nasal pillows. I like them best of all. I do keep the Wisp as a backup. Liners can be purchased to protect from red marks. I don't have the problem with the pillows though.

It takes time to become adjusted to everything. It will get better! Keep coming back and asking questions. Lots of experienced folks here and a lot of good advice, encouragement, and tips.
(This post was last modified: 04-30-2014 09:29 PM by ImaSurvivor.)
04-30-2014 09:26 PM
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retired_guy Offline

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Posts: 2,744
Joined: Jan 2014

Machine: ResMed S9 Autoset
Mask Type: Nasal pillows
Mask Make & Model: Resmed Airfit P10
Humidifier: ResMed
CPAP Pressure: 10.6/14, EPR 3
CPAP Software: ResScan SleepyHead

Other Comments: Is it bedtime yet?

Sex: Male
Location: Beautiful, albeit very wet Oregon Coast

Post: #6
RE: First night - Claustrophobic
It's ok. You'll figure it all out in no time at all. One thing that might occur is sometimes when they first start people out the beginning pressure is pretty low. It builds up in a few minutes to whatever they want it to be. So like the others suggested, sit with the mask for a few minutes until you get comfortable that it's going to behave. Then climb in the sack and know that all is well, and you're about to start a very nice and comfortable way of sleeping.

I promise. It will be fine.
04-30-2014 10:30 PM
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JimZZZ Offline

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Posts: 370
Joined: Dec 2013

Machine: ResMed S9 AutoSet
Mask Type: Full face mask
Mask Make & Model: Fisher & Paykel Simplus
Humidifier: ResMed H5i (not using)
CPAP Pressure: 9 - 14
CPAP Software: ResScan SleepyHead

Other Comments: CareFusion PureSom Ultra Chinstrap

Sex: Male
Location: Western North Carolina

Post: #7
RE: First night - Claustrophobic
Welcome to the forum Crysti. I am fairly new to therapy and experienced that claustrophobic feeling you describe only a few months ago. As you will quickly learn, there are as many opinions about masks as there are masks. It's an each to his own sort of thing. I found that anything close to my nose was disquieting so I am more comfortable with a roomy full face mask. Good luck to you and hubby. Keep the forum posted on your progress and you will get plenty of advice, knowledge and support from experienced folks.
05-01-2014 06:56 AM
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Crysti Offline

Members

Posts: 10
Joined: Apr 2014

Machine: Intellipap AutoPap
Mask Type: Nasal pillows
Mask Make & Model: Aloha
Humidifier: unsure
CPAP Pressure: unsure
CPAP Software: Not using software Other Software

Other Comments:

Sex: Female
Location: Florida

Post: #8
RE: First night - Claustrophobic
(04-30-2014 09:26 PM)ImaSurvivor Wrote:  Welcome Crysti, glad you have found us. We have all been there so don't be discouraged. As trish said, sitting up with it in the evening may help. Also, you are using a nasal mask but you might have good luck with nasal pillows instead. They are even less on your face than the nasal mask. I use the Swift FX. There are other brands too. It involves a strap on the back of my head and one over the top. The nasal pillows is just a little cushion that sits just below your nostrils.

I didn't do well with the generic full face mask or even the nasal mask they used on me during titration. The tech finally told me she had a few samples of Wisp Nasal Mask. It was light years better and more comfortable than the generic ones they started me out with. When I received my machine the next morning, the respiratory therapist noticed a red mark on the bridge of my nose and suggested trying the nasal pillows. I like them best of all. I do keep the Wisp as a backup. Liners can be purchased to protect from red marks. I don't have the problem with the pillows though.

It takes time to become adjusted to everything. It will get better! Keep coming back and asking questions. Lots of experienced folks here and a lot of good advice, encouragement, and tips.

It's funny you mention the Wisp. That's what was ordered for me, but the DME company was out of stock.

Last night was pretty miserable. I think I lay in bed for maybe 2 hours with it on. It was hot, the mask rubbed under my nose until it was sore. I ended up taking it off. I'll try again tonight. I refuse to let this little machine/mask get the best of me! Plus, I want to feel the benefits of a good nights sleep.

Thanks for the advice!
(05-01-2014 06:56 AM)JimZZZ Wrote:  Welcome to the forum Crysti. I am fairly new to therapy and experienced that claustrophobic feeling you describe only a few months ago. As you will quickly learn, there are as many opinions about masks as there are masks. It's an each to his own sort of thing. I found that anything close to my nose was disquieting so I am more comfortable with a roomy full face mask. Good luck to you and hubby. Keep the forum posted on your progress and you will get plenty of advice, knowledge and support from experienced folks.

Thanks for the welcome! The hubby slept like a baby from night #1. I kind of dislike him right now. Not really...maybe I'm just a bit envious.
(This post was last modified: 05-01-2014 09:49 AM by Crysti.)
05-01-2014 09:48 AM
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JimZZZ Offline

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Posts: 370
Joined: Dec 2013

Machine: ResMed S9 AutoSet
Mask Type: Full face mask
Mask Make & Model: Fisher & Paykel Simplus
Humidifier: ResMed H5i (not using)
CPAP Pressure: 9 - 14
CPAP Software: ResScan SleepyHead

Other Comments: CareFusion PureSom Ultra Chinstrap

Sex: Male
Location: Western North Carolina

Post: #9
RE: First night - Claustrophobic
(05-01-2014 09:48 AM)Crysti Wrote:  The hubby slept like a baby from night #1. I kind of dislike him right now. Not really...maybe I'm just a bit envious.
We have seen this report from other couples. Usually, the husband just sleeps like a lump while the wife tosses and turns. Perhaps persons of high intelligence are more sensitive to change.
05-01-2014 02:58 PM
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herbm Offline

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Posts: 852
Joined: Jan 2014

Machine: ResMed AutoSet S9
Mask Type: Oral
Mask Make & Model: ResMed Airfit P10 Nasal Pillow
Humidifier: ResMed H5i
CPAP Pressure: 11-16
CPAP Software: ResScan SleepyHead

Other Comments: Backup Mask: Innomed Hybrid FFM -- Oral+Nasal Pillows

Sex: Male
Location: Austin, TX

Post: #10
RE: First night - Claustrophobic
What others said:

Pressure too LOW can make it seem like you are trying to breath through a cocktail straw or from 10 feet underwater.

BREATHE.

Just BREATH. Take full and deep breaths and RELAX on each exhalation.

It might not be EASY to remember that you are perfectly safe so just keep BREATHING.

Count your breaths if that helps.

Remember that BREATHING OUT is as important as breathing in.

(Failure to breath OUT is the most likely reason for trouble to BREATH IN -- we get uncomfortable and try to rush the in breath.)

BREATH -- BOTH DIRECTIONS.

Did I mention you need to JUST BREATH?

It's not trivial -- I was a commercial diver in my youth, I have led a CHARMED CPAP life so far, but even I must sometimes REMEMBER TO BREATH and RELAX with each and every breath.

Sweet Dreams,

HerbM
Sleep study AHI: 49 RDI: 60 -- APAP 10-11 w/AHI: 1.5 avg for 7-days (up due likely to hip replacement recovery)

"We can all breathe together or we will all suffocate alone."
05-01-2014 10:16 PM
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