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New to CPAP
#1
So I just started using a CPAP about 4 weeks ago.  I got very minimal instruction, and was basically told "don't touch anything, you're insurance has set the controls."  So I'm afraid to do anything that might mess up what my insurance will pay (I'm still fighting them to cover part of my sleep study).

I'm using the nasal pillows, which are generally ok.  Frankly, I don't think trying a different mask will make anything better, most likely worse.

The thing is , I'm most comfortable sleeping on my stomach, or partly side/partly stomach and I have to really work to get into a position where the nasal piece isn't pushed out (which is why i don't think a different type of mask would be any better).  Even so, and for all I was told the machine was "silent" it still hear the air blowing, especially from the air holes right under the nasal piece, particularly when it blows onto the pillow, a sheet or the bed.  My husband says its almost worse than my snoring was.  And some nights when I can't get the nasal piece with a tight seal, I hear my own breathing.

I don't think I've actually slept more than a few hours at a time.  Most nights, I'm counting down to 4 hours before I can take the thing off off my head (my insurance requires minimum 4 hours use).

I do have an appt with the nurse practitioner of my sleep doctor's office on Thursday, but I don't know that I'll get that much help there.

Anyway, any advise would be appreciated.
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#2
Welcome Jevi!   Smile   This is a good place to get help!  There are a lot of very knowledgeable people here.  Firstly,  you need to figure out the make and model of your machine.  From there you can determine whether it is data capable and compatible with sleepyhead.  Sleepyhead is the open source software that many of us use to optimize our therapy!  You can find the software from the link in the menu above.

The line regarding insurance set your machine is false.  Your settings were set by the DME based on a prescription from your sleep doc/prescribing physician.  There is absolutely nothing wrong with you changing settings - generally all insurance requires is compliance.  Compliance is generally accepted to mean use of greater than 4 hours per night for 21 days per month.  That's it.

As for sleep - I think it's pretty normal to have issues adapting to therapy.  The more you keep a it the easier it gets!  I wouldn't sleep without my machine now.  That said - there are changes that can be made to comfort settings that might make you sleep better, such exhale relief (depending on your machine).   This is why seeing your therapy data is so important!
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#3
Thanks for the reply. I know my machine is a Dreamstation, but I don't have the other info here with me at work. I'll look it up and update.
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#4
Besides determining your machine type, which nasal pillow mask are you using?

Sleeping on your stomach is going to be a challange with any mask.  Try sleeping on your side with your head at the edge of your pillow so that the mask hangs off the pillow.

A nasal pillow mask should be pretty much silent, especially if you are using the ResMed P10.

Insurance companies don't care about you changing settings.  They care about compliance.
Be sure you ask for a copy of your perscription and sleep study.  You have a right to those, and is harder to get a few years down the road.

If you can fill out your profile, it would be helpful.
OpalRose
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#5
read the model number from the bottom of the machine, remove your humidifier *(if water in it) first.
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#6
Ok. give me a day and I'll get the info I can.
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#7
Hi jevi,
WELCOME! to the forum.!
Good luck to you with your CPAP therapy, hang in there for more responses to your post.
trish6hundred
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#8
Ok, so it is a Dreamstation Auto CPAP Hum Cell Dom. I forgot to check the nasal pillows mfr, I'll get that done. (looked at one of the suppliers, and my nasal pillows look exactly like the Resmed Swift FX nasal pillows)

I did read a few threads here and substituted the medium ones for the small I had been using, which seemed to work a little better this time. Initially when I tried the mediums, they constantly got pushed out, so I switched to the small, which worked a little better. But now the medium worked better last night.

I looked at the chip in the machine, its a large one that definitely won't fit in my computer port. I guess I'll need to buy an adapter so I can download the information.
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#9
You need an SD card reader (if your computer does not have one).  You can usually find one on a little known site called Amazon for a relatively small fee.  Others choose to get a Toshiba flash air ad card so they don't have to remove it from the machine.  

The dreamstation auto is a great machine!  If you haven't already done so, you should update your profile with your equipment, and your pressures (you can view the settings in the clinician menu).
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#10
Welcome to the board!

If you have obstructive events, it may be helpful to test the following ideas to see if they help you, if you are not already doing them.

1) Sleeping on your side, rather than sleeping on your back. For those with obstructive events, this can reduce them considerably. (Mine dropped as low as 1/8 the number as lying on my back).

2) Prevent your chin from bending towards your chest, as that puts a kink in the airway. Some folks find that a small pillow under the chin, or a cervical collar may help with that.

Of course, everyone is different, so your mileage may vary with these ideas.
                                                                                                                                                                                  
Please organize your SleeyHead screenshots like this.
I'm an epidemiologist, not a medical provider. 
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