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[Pressure] Newly-diagnosed; Frequently gasping for air using new CPAP
Also a long-time side-sleeper, I got a CPAP pillow - basically a thick, very firm pillow with cut-away or straight vertical sides. I sleep with my shoulder tucked up close so that my head is supported at the edge, and my mask and tubing hangs off the side. My hose comes over the back of the headboard so that I can roll over from side to side.
It's worth getting used to, because side sleeping does cut down on the obstructive apneas.
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I have been a long time side sleeper and that is what I do every night. I use a firm pillow that does not touch the FFM (Full Face Mask). It did not take long to adjust to the mask. I knew that I needed it and now feel comfortable.

You will adapt and improve your health, Next you will say "Why did it take me so long to start cpap"


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Can you recommend any pillows specifically? I'm currently using one that is temperature friendly and usually cold, which I love, but it doesn't work well at all with the side sleeping and the mask.
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When I first started, my doctor told me to take a sleeping pill to get to sleep right away and then to wean off of it. I tried it and it seemed to work. I'd go to sleep right away and sleep through the night (pretty much). Now I don't need the pill anymore.
Maybe not for everyone, but it worked for me. It was just an over the counter pill.
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I use a small sheep skin covered pillow that was laying around the house. It is cool and firm with flat sides. Works for me.

I am sure others will have suggestions.


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Things FEEL like they're getting better. Currently I'm now at a stage where I'm no longer gasping, so that's good. BUt now I can't actually tell if I'm sleeping better. It's hard to explain. I think the whole "act of actually getting to sleep first" is now the biggest hurdle to overcome.
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I felt better quickly, but it took 4-6 months to see my oxygen levels rise and begin to understand how bad it was. I still have my share of problems but daily life is much better.

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check your ramp pressures and times. sometimes a machine will start out with low pressures and slow ramp time leaving you gasping for breath for up to 30 minutes. Some people prefer not to use ramp at all
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I also am a new user using a DreamStation CPAP Auto and frequently gasp for air at the start.  The pressure displayed is 5.5 but I cannot find anywhere that this pressure can be increased.  Does that mean that it is preset and cannot be changed
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Have you a CPAP setup manual for your DreamStation? There's a link at the top of the page where you can find how to request it. It should provide the instructions for adjusting the settings to work optimally for you.
Please organize your SleeyHead screenshots like this.
I'm an epidemiologist, not a medical provider. 
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