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Introduction
#1
Introduction
Hello everyone, my name is Ash and I was diagnosed with sleep apnea 3 years ago. I've been using a CPAP machine since then, and it has helped quite a bit!

... But I know there's still a lot of room for improvement. I'm still not as wakeful and energetic during the day as I would like to be.

I've decided to make my sleep health my number one priority this month.

Some things I want to look into this month:
  • Become active on apneaboard.com. Immerse my self in the community.
  • Establish and consistently follow a night routine (stay away from screens, meditate, etc. be asleep by 10:45 every night)
  • Analyze my sleep with OSCAR and a night-vision video camera
  • Determine if I need to make positional changes (e.g., favor side sleeping)
  • Determine if my mask leaks or shifts around too much (I use nasal pillows)
  • Determine if I should try a different type of machine (APAP or BIPAP) or a different manufacturer and figure out how to go about it with the provider/insurance
  • Reconsider an oral appliance
  • Reconsider various types of surgery. I have a deviated septum, narrow jaws, and a recessed lower jaw. Improving these seem like they would have both aesthetic and functional benefits including w.r.t. sleep apnea: https://www.sleepapnea.org/treat/sleep-a...a-surgery/
  • Get a full copy of sleep studies and prescription
  • Be more timely with replacing and cleaning equipment
Let me know if you have any suggested readings or other tips. Looking forward to being on here!

  Thanks
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#2
RE: Introduction
The last 2 in my signature might be a good start.
Apnea (80-100%) 10 seconds, Hypopnea (50-80%) 10 seconds, Flow Limits (0-50%) not timed 
Cervical Collar     Dealing w DME     Chart Organizing
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#3
RE: Introduction
Welcome to Apnea board forum, If you download Oscar(its free) you will understand your machine and settings much better from help of others. I actually like looking at my Oscar charts because it helps me to dial in my machine to its optimum setting. The software is free(top of page) and it is amazing if interested in that sort of personal education.
Your machine should have a SD card and that is all you need when looking at results on your personal computer.
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#4
RE: Introduction
The one item in your list you shouldn't be too concerned about. That is timely replacement of components. Although regular cleaning is important, most of us have found that components last much longer than the replacement schedules recommended by DMEs. I, for example, have been using the same mask frame for about two years and cushions last a year or more. I don't change the humidifier chamber unless it develops a leak. My current chamber has been in use for over a year. I don't recall when I last replaced a hose. I just keep one spare of everything on hand. Unless you have no copays it will save you a lot.
Download OSCAR

Organize Charts
Attaching Charts

Mask Primer
Soft Cervical Collar

INFORMATION ON APNEA BOARD FORUMS OR ON APNEABOARD.COM SHOULD NOT BE CONSIDERED AS MEDICAL ADVICE. ALWAYS SEEK THE ADVICE OF A PHYSICIAN BEFORE SEEKING TREATMENT FOR MEDICAL CONDITIONS, INCLUDING SLEEP APNEA. INFORMATION POSTED ON THE APNEA BOARD WEB SITE AND FORUMS ARE PERSONAL OPINION ONLY AND NOT NECESSARILY A STATEMENT OF FACT.

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#5
RE: Introduction
(09-21-2020, 03:30 PM)staceyburke Wrote: The last 2 in my signature might be a good start.

Thanks! What about that first link on cervical collars? Do you use one?
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#6
RE: Introduction
(09-21-2020, 05:10 PM)Melman Wrote: The one item in your list you shouldn't be too concerned about. That is timely replacement of components. Although regular cleaning is important, most of us have found that components last much longer than the replacement schedules recommended by DMEs. I, for example, have been using the same mask frame for about two years and cushions last a year or more. I don't change the humidifier chamber unless it develops a leak. My current chamber has been in use for over a year. I don't recall when I last replaced a hose.  I just keep one spare of everything on hand. Unless you have no copays it will save you a lot.

Thanks for the tip! I've definitely noticed that the equipment seems to last longer than the recommended replacement schedule would suggest.

As for my own cleaning/replacing, the one thing I do semi-consistently is quickly rinse and dry my nasal pillows every couple nights before bed. But I don't even use soap, and I probably should.

Everything else is a bit ad hoc. I never remember to replace the disposable filter on time. And I only replace or wash the headgear when the velcro starts losing its grip.

BTW, I don't bother dumping out the old water in the water chamber like the manual says to do every night (if I recall correctly). There's no way this can be an issue, can it?
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#7
RE: Introduction
Cleaning the parts is easy enough with just dish soap like Dawn or similar and hot water. No accessory cleaning machines are needed. Soak, lightly scrub, rinse and let dry either by air dry or wiping down. The biggest thing to replace consistently in my opinion is the filter to help keep the machine from eating dust.

Otherwise, if you have 1 extra of all parts for the mask, hose, humidifier, this allows you to keep it running in case something breaks or fails over a weekend. Do plan on getting OSCAR and make sure to have a SD or SDHC of 2-32GB of any brand that can be found at digital photo stores, Best Buy, WalMart, Staples, etc.

Humidifier tub can have plain tap water in it. And you don't need to dump the water for a few days. Obvious if something is seen growing in the water, dump, rinse and refill.

Best wishes on your success and welcome to Apnea Board.
Dave

OSCAR
Standard OSCAR Chart Order
Mask Primer
Dealing With A DME
Soft Cervical Collar Wiki
INFORMATION ON APNEA BOARD FORUMS OR ON APNEABOARD.COM SHOULD NOT BE CONSIDERED MEDICAL ADVICE. ALWAYS SEEK THE ADVICE OF A PHYSICIAN BEFORE SEEKING TREATMENT FOR MEDICAL CONDITIONS, INCLUDING SLEEP APNEA. INFORMATION POSTED ON THE APNEA BOARD WEBSITE AND FORUMS ARE PERSONAL OPINION ONLY AND NOT NECESSARILY A STATEMENT OF FACT.
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#8
RE: Introduction
Standing water can get squirrely after a while.  For me, I dump out the old water each morning,  put in some tap water and shake hard, dump and turn upside down to dry.  Put in fresh water before bed.  Once a week it gets a drop of dish detergent.   We're talking seconds of effort.  

I live in a large city with good tap water.  Some summers if the chemicals are too strong,  I use zero water to help with the smell. 

The reservoir can get the red coloured stuff, which is apparently harmless,  but dish detergent, vinegar and a qtip clears that up.  Occasionally,  water deposits will cloud up the bottom; a vinegar soak for 10 or 20 minutes will take care of that.  

This is minimal but effective so far.
Sleep-well
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