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New User...Can't Breathe Very Well?
#1
Hey everyone. I've been reading through some threads, but I can't seem to find any posts where anyone uses the same pressure along with machine that I do.

I literally just got my machine yesterday. In my sleep study, it seemed that I was breathing very well, and I felt comfortable with the pressure. I have the nasal mask, and I didn't feel like I needed to open my mouth to breathe at all. However, now I have my machine and it feels like it's almost difficult for me to inhale and exhale. It also feels like I should be opening my mouth, but of course I can't do that. It just generally feels like I have to catch my breath when I'm breathing in and out.

My sleep pressure is 8, but it starts out at 4. However, she told me it won't go to 8 until I'm asleep. Which is understandable, but that doesn't help me breathe while I'm awake.

I have the AirSense10 Autoset For Her. Do I need to adjust the humidity or anything like that? Also, I frequently have nasal congestion as I have bad allergies...how would I handle that with my mask? [/size]Again I'm very new to this, so any advice at all would be great! Thank you so much.

-Melissa
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#2
Hi mabostic! Welcome to the forum.

Most people report the starved air feeling when the inhale pressure is below about 7cm. It sounds like your DME set the CPAP up with the Ramp feature turned on. This feature allows the setting of the starting pressure, up to the normal pressure setting, and allows the time for the ramp to be in effect. The time frame is selectable from 0(Off) to 45 minutes in increments of 5 minutes. If the person that setup your system didn't turn on the Patient Selectable(actual verbiage may be slightly different) option, you will need to get the manual for your CPAP. The link for the manuals is listed at the top of the page.

Good luck!
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#3
Hello, mabostic. Welcome to the forum.

Crimson Nape gave you some good advise. Most people don't do well with pressures much under 7 cm, even for a short time. Like you, my prescribed pressure was 8 cm. My DME had set a ramp pressure of 6 cm for 15 or 20 minutes. I also found felt I was starving for air. I ended up setting my ramp pressure to 7 and found I would be OK with my prescribed pressure of 8 cm within about five minutes so I set the ramp time at 5 minutes. I don't use the ramp feature now.

It's OK to use the ramp feature if you feel you need it. However, as Crimson said, you may need a higher ramp start pressure.

The humidity setting you use is a very personal choice. Some people need a lot and some need little to no humidity. I adjusted mine just to the point of not waking up with a dry mouth. If it is set too high the reservoir can run out of water before the end of the night.

I have bad allergies also. At one point, before I started treating them, they got so bad they caused an extreme case of vertigo. I routinely have nasal congestion. Just treat your allergies as you normally would. I think you will find that the CPAP pressure will actually help you breath better on the nights you are congested.

Sleep well,
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#4
You will need to get access to the ramp starting pressure settings, get the manual if you want to do it yourself or ask the DME to enable access for you. You can adjust this in one setting during the day.

Put the mask on and turn on the machine, if you feel like you are having trouble breathing increase the "ramp starting pressure" (this is not the therapy pressure) by 0.2CM and try again. Keep doing this until you find YOUR setting that makes you comfortable. Again this is not the therapy settings and is purely a comfort setting. How long the machine takes to ramp up to therapy settings is a personal preference choice that you also need to figure out, some turn it off as the pressure does not bother them, I personally have always had it on.

Your DME and Doctor should have no problem with you changing comfort settings as you are the only one that can possibly know what makes you comfortable. You may want to make additional changes after you get this issues resolved, there is a lot more you can adjust so you better tolerate CPAP therapy (which of course is the whole point of these settings)
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#5
I may have missed it, but I didn't see where folks told you how to fix it.

Hold the home button and dial button (you can push the dial knob in) for 3 seconds. This puts you in clinical mode, and change your ramp. I turned my ramp feature off and increased my starting pressure from 4 to 6.

As Crimson mentioned, since your script is 8, perhaps you set yours to 7. It will give you full pressure from the start and you should t feel like you're suffocating.
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#6
Thank you all so much! I turned the ramp time down and tried it out and I feel so much better. I think I'll also feel much more comfortable after using it for a few more days. I really really appreciate all of your responses, it helped so much!
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#7
Hi mabostic,
WELCOME! to the forum.!
I wish you much success with your CPAP therapy, hang in there for more responses to your post.
trish6hundred
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#8
Happy to hear it is better.

As an aside, I wonder how many of the people setting these machines up have actually spent a night or with their suggested settings. I am guessing not many.
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#9
I'm actually a little afraid to use it tonight...I know it'll be better, but it will be the first night I'll sleep with it for the whole night, other than the sleep study. Hoping it goes okay!
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#10
if you still feel like you are not getting enough air you can either change the ramp starting pressure or you can just turn the ramp off and it will start at your therapy pressure. You may have to adjust to the pressure, but you will be getting plenty of air.
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