Hello Guest, Welcome to Apnea Board !
As a guest, you are limited to certain areas of the board and there are some features you can't use.
To post a message, you must create a free account using a valid email address.

or Create an Account


New Posts   Today's Posts

New CPAP user...and I can't sleep a wink. Help!
#1
New CPAP user...and I can't sleep a wink. Help!
Equipment: ResMed AirSense 10 AutoSet, ResMed AirTouch F20 full face mask.


My pressure setting is 6-14

I have been told I snore and quit breathing when I sleep, so after putting it off for a long time, I finally decided to do a home sleep study. The sleep study went terribly, I felt like I only slept an hour or so that night, but apparently the data was sufficient enough that I was prescribed a cpap machine.

I went to get the machine and left a bit overwhelmed...not having questions, but because I didn't know what to ask. Everything is so new to me. I left with a nasal mask, but it turns out I am not able to breath well enough through my nose to use that type of mask, so I could not sleep with it. So the next day I went back and got a new mask. This time I got a full faced mask. Now I can actually breath through the mask, but I am still not able to sleep. It feels overwhelming having that thing strapped to my head. I've had the machine for 5 days or so and I still cannot get myself to sleep with it on. I'll lay there for a couple hours, then finally give up and take it off so I can actually get some sleep.

I feel like I have to have the mask really tight, but it still leaks a bit when the pressure gets higher. I've messed with the ramp settings and even put it on auto ramp, but I still cannot fall asleep. The breathing aspect isn't super comfortable, but I feel like it's more the mask that I'm having trouble getting used to. I don't see how I could ever get used to having that thing on me and be comfortable enough to fall asleep. And if I did actually fall asleep, I'm afraid the higher pressure would wake me up.

When the pressure gets higher, it's like my mouth acts as a balloon being filled up. I don't know how to relax my mouth and not have the air blow my mouth up like that.

Despite not being able to sleep, my machine still says I have "events per hour". Is that possible if I'm not asleep?...if I'm actually asleep, it's so light and brief that I am convinced I'm awake.

This whole process is completely exhausting. I'm sticking with it, but there are hardly enough hours in the day for me to lay there with a mask on and not being able to sleep.
Apparently I have to use it for 4 hours per day for my insurance to pay. So that's 4 hours of me laying there with a mask on while I'm awake. It doesn't seem to matter how tired I am, I still can't sleep while using the CPAP.

Apparently I'm supposed to make an appointment in a month or so with my regular doctor and have the home health care place send them my sleep data? Is that a normal thing, or maybe I misunderstood. I assume that would be for insurance purposes to verify that I'm actually using the CPAP.

As far as cleaning the mask and everything. How often and how do you do that? And also, can I leave the water in the chamber of the humidifier from the previous day, or do I have to dump it out? I've done some reading, but I get conflicting answers. It seems like the manufacturers want you to clean everything super often.

Do you all have any advice for me about anything? Any input at all would be greatly appreciated. If there is anything that I can purchase to make my life easier, I don't mind forking out the money.... I just want this process to be easier, and most importantly I need some sleeeeeep!
Post Reply Post Reply






Donate to Apnea Board  
#2
RE: New CPAP user...and I can't sleep a wink. Help!
Whew, are you ever lucky!!!!  You're going through, word-for-word, event-for-event, dismay-for-dismay, what about 80% of new PAP users do.  Too-funny 

Ok, that wasn't so funny.  Not to you, and not right now.  My bad.

Truthfully, what you have described is not in any way atypical.  Look...it's a novelty, it represents a new reality, and that new reality isn't especially nice to have when you're aging and things are....ummm…..changing....yeah....changing.  You've never known you had the disorder...until now.  You've never had to sleep with a mask over your face...until now.  You've never felt your cheeks ballooning...until now.  This is a new time, a new milestone, a new reality...AND YOU WILL GET USED TO IT.

First, you go by how it feels.  If it feels okay to wear while you're watching TV or reading the paper, then that's a great way to get used to the feel.  Many do that.  Later, in bed, it won't seem quite so intrusive, and you'll be able to relax.

Next, you go by the numbers.  The data you should be able to read from your (provided, included?) SD card in the side slot, will tell you amazing information about how well you're doing over and above those two green smilies on the machine's screen.  In the masthead at top, notice "OSCAR".  Please read-in, download it, it's free, and then open an account in it.  Get your SD card and upload your latest information.  Post it here, and we can help you to fine-tune your settings...IF....they need it.  We won't know until we see hard data.

Welcome!
Contrite, and wiser.
Post Reply Post Reply
#3
RE: New CPAP user...and I can't sleep a wink. Help!
Welcome to the forum. Most of us struggled when starting CPAP. I’m sorry to learn your having such a rough time. Hopefully we can help. One way to get accustomed to the mask and machine is to wear it when you’re not trying to sleep. That will help with your compliance requirement also.
I use the mask that you have but have never experienced my mouth blowing up like a balloon. Others have had that problem and someone will give you some advice. It’s not necessary to have the mask really tight. That can actually increase leaks. See the link to the mask primer below. There’s lots of good info. There. A different type of nasal mask may actually be best for you. Unfortunately, getting the right mask is a big challenge.
It’s normal for the machine to report events when you’re awake. Our breathing is much less regular when awake than when asleep. You can ignore them.
It’s normal to have to return to the Dr. after the first few months. Some review the data closely. Many do not. It’s primarily to meet insurance requirements.
There are a lot of opinions on how often to clean the components. In my opinion there is no need to clean as frequently as the manufacturers recommend. I clean my mask with mild dishwashing detergent once or twice a week. Others do it less or daily. Don’t let anyone sell you a machine that supposedly cleans and sanitizes your equipment using ozone or UV light. They are expensive, unnecessary, and there are reports they damage equipment. Mild detergent is sufficient.
If you are using distilled water you can leave water in the chamber, top it off every day, and empty and rinse it every week or so. If you’re using tap water it’s best to completely empty it and refill every day to avoid mineral buildup.
I’m glad you plan to stick with us. You should get plenty of advice. Feel free to ask any questions that occur to you.
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.

Post Reply Post Reply
#4
RE: New CPAP user...and I can't sleep a wink. Help!
I have the same machine and use the AirFit F20 mask. But, from the 1st night on and up to now (almost 1 yr. later) I have no issues at all getting geared up for sleep. I'm a die-hard mouth breather and a side sleeper.

I suspect that I was very lucky and my situation isn't the norm for most people. My pressure setting is 6-12. I'm still messing around with the settings and trying to find that sweet spot, so to speak. 

The important thing is don't give up on it. I feel pretty positive that the more you use it, the faster things will fall in place for you. Let's face it, SA Therapy is pretty weird and most don't ever have to experience it. I thought I never would. 

It's no secret on here that I'm a bit disappointed with all of it. Almost 1 yr. for me and I still don't feel any better. And, according to my numbers and my sleep doc, all is going very well. I'm responding just fine. 

But, I've had positive feedback and support from this forum. I couldn't ask for any more. I'm going to keep at it and give it some more time to see what happens. 

I do take over the counter sleep aids at night. Been doing that for a few years. Although it is intimidating, stick with it. It will get easier and more comfortable within a few weeks at most. 

I empty my water reservoir each & every morning. I then wipe it dry with a tissue and let it sit open for a few hours. I did start out using distilled water initially, but gave up on that for tap water and all has been good. 

I wipe down my mask and cushion at least every other day with some Clorox anti-bacterial wipes. Some may say that is too harsh and could irritate your skin or hasten the useful life or the mask / cushion. For me.....it hasn't been an issue or problem. 

The air hose gets a good soaking in hot water and Dawn dish soap, as does the hose elbow, once a week or so. I have a hose brush that I just recently purchased. I've only used it a couple of time so far. 

Anyways, this is the bottom line. STICK WITH IT! It will get easier I can assure you. You'll look back and think I'm glad that I did.  Smile
Post Reply Post Reply






Donate to Apnea Board  
#5
RE: New CPAP user...and I can't sleep a wink. Help!
It took me sitting watching tv for hoursvto get used to it. As for mouth l blowing up try suckingbyour tongue to the top of your mouth. It might take several months to not feel so tired. Lot of people say it dose not happen over nite. Each one of usvis different on how long it takes to get benifets from it. Hang in there it gets better.
Post Reply Post Reply
#6
RE: New CPAP user...and I can't sleep a wink. Help!
LOTS of great advice people are giving you! One other thought: if you haven’t already, look for online videos about fitting the kind of mask you have.

Keep trying, but don’t worry if you need to try a different mask at some point. Everyone’s face is different, and there’s no one mask that works for everyone. I tried four before getting one I can live with, and I don’t think that’s too unusual.

It’s kind of heretical, but if you think it’d give you a better shot at sleeping with the machine, you could use a fixed pressure for a few nights. I don’t think you’ll need to do that, but let us know if the time comes that you want to give it some thought.

Finally, I found it kind of comforting to think about the thousands and thousands of people who are using a machine every night. Reminded me that it’s a weird experience but I’m not the only one having it. Hang in there. It will definitely get better.
Post Reply Post Reply
#7
RE: New CPAP user...and I can't sleep a wink. Help!
Thank you all so much! I'm super thankful for all the insight. You've given me a lot to process and look into. I'm sure I'll be back with more questions, and hopefully some positive results!
I've been a bit overwhelmed and discouraged, but it helps to know that the problems I'm having are pretty normal. I guess it's going to just take me being miserable for a while before I see positive results, but all your replies are definitely encouraging. Hopefully I'll be able to use your knowledge and become a pro at this Smile
Post Reply Post Reply






Donate to Apnea Board  
#8
RE: New CPAP user...and I can't sleep a wink. Help!
First of all relax. this does not change fast or decline fast, I do however understand the not breathing part.
Don't worry about clean now.
There are 2 things about CPAP. Stopping the apneas and being comfortable with what it takes to stop the apneas
The people here need to see some data from the software program (free) so they can help with the first patn

Understand an apnea is just not breathing when the machine THINKS you should have breathed. When you roll over you tend to hold your breath and the machine will see that as an apnea. It is only looking at changes in pressure and trying to figure out what happened.

the First thing that needs to be done is get your AHI down (apnea events) and then get you comfortable with the treatment.

you starting off pressure can be a little low. Do you feel like you are not getting enough air when you turn on the machine? you might need to raise that value. Get the clinicians manual to change that setting (or your doctor).

Leaks are important in the long run and it's hard to tune in the treatment with major leaks, pretty sure leaks of 40 or lest should be looked into, but not until you get the AHI in line.

Get us data.

there are many things that can be done, the next level machine, many settings- both clinical and comfort.


The data program used to be called sleepyhead and now it is something else, look on this forum and find it and GET US DATA, we can and will help your. Might as well pick up the clinicians manual while your at it, you can get it on this site. Don't give up, we can and will help. I personally was not getting any sleep at all and now it is fine. I did not to just get used to it, I needed to get the right machine and with the right settings and now I sleep quite well
Post Reply Post Reply
#9
RE: New CPAP user...and I can't sleep a wink. Help!
The software PoolQ mentioned is OSCAR. It is free and you can get it here: https://www.sleepfiles.com/OSCAR/ You will need an SD card in your machine to collect the data. It may have come with one. If not any card between 2 and 32GB will do. You will also need a card reader for your computer if it doesn't have one. It wouldn't hurt to get the software now but there is no value in posting data from using the machine while awake. You have an excellent machine and your present settings are reasonable. We often recommend a low pressure of 7 but we can deal with pressure settings later. Get more comfortable with the mask and machine and post some data after you are able to sleep with it at least for a few hours. Your present goal should be reducing the leaks and getting more comfortable with the machine.
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.

Post Reply Post Reply
#10
RE: New CPAP user...and I can't sleep a wink. Help!
Something is wrong if you have trouble breathing through your nose. We sometimes have temporary trouble due to a cold or an infection, but it should not be considered normal. You need to see an ear-nose-throat doctor.
Post Reply Post Reply






Donate to Apnea Board  


Possibly Related Threads...
Thread Author Replies Views Last Post
  New User joej85 5 152 04-06-2021, 01:28 PM
Last Post: joej85
  app for monitoring sleep quality with CPAP - but without extra hardware? Benzi 2 100 04-05-2021, 10:49 PM
Last Post: Benzi
  First Time CPAP USer RonN 5 308 03-21-2021, 11:17 AM
Last Post: RonN
  Central Sleep Apnea and Home Sleep Test Jojoap 3 503 03-15-2021, 06:20 AM
Last Post: chrisj
  [Diagnosis] New CPAP user here dogdemon 38 1,016 02-26-2021, 10:32 PM
Last Post: staceyburke
Sad CPAP User Since May 2020 - Still EXHAUSTED. krussell87 4 200 02-16-2021, 07:34 PM
Last Post: Sleeprider
  Long time Cpap user, new to the Apnea Board jonph0215 3 178 02-13-2021, 11:05 PM
Last Post: gregoryalter


New Posts   Today's Posts






About Apnea Board

Apnea Board is an educational web site designed to empower Sleep Apnea patients.