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[Treatment] What to do when you have a cold?
#1
I need some advice and guidance now that winter is around the corner and there WILL be some head-colds in the future. This will be my first winter using the machine - started in late July. Things are going pretty well with my treatment with the nasal pillows and I am getting more used to using it every-night. Since I have severe apnea (AHI 57), my doctor really emphasized the need to use it every-night and not take any breaks from it (but not to worry if it was just one night).
I started wondering about what I would do if I had a cold because they do linger. I called my respiratory therapist at my DME store. She said just don't use it when you have a cold. I told her I didn't think that was good advice for me - that I needed to use it according to my doctor. She said I couldn't get a different machine until Jan. if I wanted Medicare to pay.

So here's what I decided, based on some previous advice I had gotten on the Forum (which I love). I will order another mask (FF) on my own (this week), and use the month trail basis to determine if I like it. And then I'll keep if for use just when I have a cold and can't breath well enough for the nasal pillows. I'll keep my nasal pillows and continue to get my nasal pillow supplies from my DME (free from Medicare) and cover the costs of the FF mask on my own. So the FF will just be my backup mask for colds.

Does this sound like the best plan? What do others do when they have a cold and severe apnea?

Last, but not least, do you guys and gals have any advice about which mask I should start out with when I do my trial? I was looking at the Mirage Liberty by Resmed and the Hybrid mask by RespCare. I don't think I can wear anything that goes across the bridge of my nose. They put one of those on me at my sleep study and it was so uncomfortable I never went back to sleep.

Thanks for reading this and offering any opinions.
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#2
sleepytimegal

I use my mask even when I have a head cold. It's a nasal pillows mask and I don't swap it out for a FFM just because I have a cold. Sometimes the leaks get a bit worse, but I don't sweat it if the leaks are up a bit for a few days. Most of the time breathing the filtered, humidified air coming through the mask is easier than trying to sleep without the mask anyway.

My husband does prefer a FFM when he's got congestion. He started out with a nasal mask, but bought a FFM when his allergies started acting up. His FFM is now is go to mask because he likes it. There is no evidence that he's even a part time mouth breather, given what his leaks look like when he does use the nasal mask. He just likes the FFM more.

You write:
(11-12-2016, 10:40 AM)sleepytimegal Wrote: Last, but not least, do you guys and gals have any advice about which mask I should start out with when I do my trial? I was looking at the Mirage Liberty by Resmed and the Hybrid mask by RespCare. I don't think I can wear anything that goes across the bridge of my nose.
In addition to those two masks, you might also want to look at the PR Amara View Full Face Mask and the Circadiance SleepWeaver Anew Full Face Masks. These two do cover the tip of your nose, but they don't go all the way up to the bridge of your nose.

If the problem is just the forehead support, you'd have a few more choices, including the Resmed AirFit F10 Full Face Mask (either the "regular" or "For Her" version) and the Resmed Quattro FX Full Face Mask (either the "regular' or "For Her" version).
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#3
Thanks. I will be watching this, because I had the same question!
Always grateful for help received. I am a part of all that I have met.
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#4
One thing I noticed ,but may not necessarily be the case for everyone ,was that when I had my first really bad cold on PAP I didn't change anything about my therapy. What I ended up experiencing was that the pressure on my APAP severly increased and caused other problems like bad headache and dizziness. After a couple of nights of anguish simply changing to fixed pressure made everything normal again.
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#5
sleepytimegal,
When I first started, I thought I may need a full face mask if I came down with a bad cold.
I procrastinated and never bought one, so used my nasal pillow when I got sick, and to my surprise, the warm humid air from the nasal pillows just blasted through all the congestion.

Now sneezing and coughing is another subject. I would just lift the pillows away from my nose and cough or sneeze, then put it back on.

I did wash my mask almost every day when I had a cold, even though it was my own germs. Sad

One more thing, just my opinion, but you received bad advice on not using your cpap when you have a cold. It may be uncomfortable, but you can get through it.

OpalRose
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#6
Robysue, Now I'm thinking I should just wait until I have my first head cold and see how it goes. However, I am a mouth breather and use the chin strap and just a thin strip of tape over the center of my lips to keep the lower lip from drooping down, as I found it always did in the wee hours. (If I vomited during the night it could still come out my mouth. I checked it out using water.) Those modifications might not work so well with coughing and sneezing. But, now that I think about it, those things would be a problem with a FF mask too. I think I'll just wait and see how I do with the nasal pillows during that dreaded cold time.
One thing is that I am going to be more careful about picking up the cold virus. I now carry a disinfectant spray and hand wash in my purse and will be careful about contaminating my hands. It helps to be retired and you can control your situation better. The main problem is that my grand daughter seems to have a cold all winter long.
I like the idea of not spending the money on something I can get along without. I guess if I need one I could get it pretty fast. Sleepytimegal
Thanks Opal Rose, That's news I can use.

Sleepytimegal
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#7
I agree with and do just as OpalRose. The pillows just blast through the congestion and I sleep better with a cold with than without CPAP. To keep nose from running or sneezing I'll use Mucinex or Theraflu or something like that. Try different things and see what works best for you but you may not need to change masks.
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Happy Pappin'
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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. 
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#8
I switch between the Nuance (nasal pillows) and the Simplus (FFM). I was surprised that I was just as congested in the morning while using the Simplus. But with the Nuance, I was fairly clear in the morning. The pillows really just push that stuff out of the way.

Turn up the humidification slightly.
Consider using a saline rinse. I use the squeeze bottle from Ayr and pre-packaged solution from Neill-Med. I rinse last thing at night and first thing in the morning. And several times during the day if it is bad enough.
If I am really ill like with bronchitis, I'll use a humidifier here at my desk. They make these tiny ones now that use a regular water bottle as the tank.
PaulaO2
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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.




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#9
Hi sleepytimegal,
Your RT gave you bad advice when she told you not to use your CPAP machine when you have a cold.
Sometimes, there are some pretty good deals on FFMs from some of the suppliers on the suppliers list at the top of each page here on the board.
What you could do is, get an FFM just in case you might need one, then you'll have it and won't have to order it during the time you have a cold.
trish6hundred
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#10
What I do to help is to use those capsules that can be put on babies pillows to help them breath.
Any vapour type thing placed near the air intake of the machine will help.

Make sure it will NOT be sucked into the air intake and block it though.

Place it in a small container near air intake.
Some capsules need to be diluted in water, but you don't need much water, just enough to cover the bottom of the small container you are using.
Yogurt container with it cut half an inch from the bottom is fine, put a bit of Blue tack of double sided tape under it to prevent it tipping.
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