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Mouth stuck shut - tissues in mouth glued together after an hour of cpap
#1
]I have not been on cpap for very long, only a week or so. Pressure is currently at 12, and I have a medieval torture device also known as a face mask with a forehead stabilizer. I have been diligent and followed the rules but, after the first couple of days, I have found that after about an hour on the machine, my mouth is stuck - in effect, glued shut and there are dry bits of crystalline material in various places, not to mention a chemical odour when I finally get my mouth open. My mouth is so stuck together that I cannot activate my salivary glands (which I usually am able to do) and I have to pour water over my lips in order to get some to seep through so that I can begin to get my mouth open and re-hydrate. I have to do this several times during the night. (My cpap device has a heated hose and a water reservoir - Philips Respironics system one remstar ....).

I thought about this and decided that it could be a combination of pressure and a heavy mask, so last night I did the unthinkable. I changed my pressure - first to 11 for a couple of hours, which was no better; then to 8 which worked just fine for the mouth problem (mouth was fine this morning, a bit dry but nothing else) [/font]but of course, both obstructive and open airway apnea figures went through the ceiling overnight. I don't breath with an open mouth, this is not "dryness" in the usual sense. It is something else. It is difficult to describe it to someone who hasn't experienced it (such as the "clinician" who sells the equipment because the clinician has never tried cpap ... a whole other story there).

Has anyone out there had a similar experience? If you have, how did you deal with it?

A good night tonight to all ...
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#2
I'd try a different mask. Does your supplier allow you to switch masks without charge? In the US it is customary to offer new customers a 30-day return and swap privilege on masks. I'm sure all the veterans here will agree with me that the CPAP devil is in the mask. I'm currently in my ninth mask, after one year on CPAP.

You might also try adjusting the settings on your humidifier. Everyone needs different humidity settings, and your location makes a difference as well.

Also, while your problem may be caused by something else, I swore that I never slept with my mouth open. They videotaped me during my sleep study and they said my mouth was always closed. People who have slept with me have never said that my mouth was open. But every once in a while I would wake up with a dry mouth, even before CPAP. About a month or two ago I started using a chin strap because I am still having problems controlling leaks. Guess what? Never a dry mouth since. I'm saying this as a suggestion that you try a chin strap. It may not help, but nothing ventured, nothing gained.
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#3
What humidifier setting are you using? I need mine set so that I use almost all of the water in the tank.
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#4
Try turning up the humidity. That works for me too, since I get dried out too from the air flow.

Wink
"With ordinary talent and extraordinary perseverance, all things are attainable." - Thomas Foxwell Buxton

Cool
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#5
Hi SaviAtHome,
WELCOME! to the forum.!
I'm sorry you are having such a rough time with CPAP right now but it takes time to get used to.
I would echo what others have said in this post, turn up your humidity a notch or two.
I would also recommend that you see if you can change masks. The mask is the hardest part of this whole thing.
Hang in there for more suggestions and don't give up.
Best of luck to you.
trish6hundred
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#6
The humidifier is set to its maximum and is empty by morning. I am quite certain that humidification is not the issue because my nostrils are just fine. Something else is going on. There is extreme dry mouth and then there is this ...
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#7
It probably won't help a lot, but before I got my machine I used Biotene (sp?) gel in my mouth - worked for about an hour or so for me.
Also probably not any real help, but I'm wondering if you could get away with not heating the hose - if you don't get rainout. Maybe the heat is drying you out too. I have one of those "snuggle" covers on mine - no heat.
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#8
It looks like some great suggestions have been offered! Cool


I found that in the winter here in central Massachusetts, I used much more water, and several times the container on my BIPAP went dry. (I have my machine set on 4.5 for humidity.)

What I discovered, is that the humidity in the house is very low in the winter.

I do not know if this is relevant in your situation, but perhaps you might want to check the humidity in the room you sleep.
Thinking-about
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#9
Have you tried applying either lip balm or Vaseline to your lips beforehand?
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#10
If you are using your home tap water, then perhaps the water is very hard and crystallizing from chemicals as it rapidly drys. Perhaps using distilled water may help your situation, if your aren't already using such.
Yesterday is history; Tomorrow is a mystery; Today is a gift; Thats why its called "The Present".
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