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#1
New User
Hi,

I have recently started CPAP therapy and it's not going great so far.  I have had my equipment for 2 weeks now and I have only been able to go to sleep using it once.

First a bit about me.  Due to excessive snoring, I saw a neurologist.  I then had an at home sleep study done which indicated moderate sleep apnea with an AHI score of 28.  (My sleep was much worse than normal during the sleep study night so I'm not sure if it is a true indication of my real sleep.)  Even when I'm awake, my exhalation will get obstructed if I lay on my back so I'm sure I have issues.  I typically sleep on my side/stomach.

From what I gather, most people with sleep apnea have daytime tiredness.  I am never tired, even at bedtime.  I am (and always have been) a light sleeper.  I already take 10mg melatonin at night just to get drowsy enough to go to sleep.  I typically go to bed around 11pm and get up around 7:30am.  I only have 2 caffeinated beverages every day before noon.   

My initial pressure settings were 5-20 with the ramp turned on and EPR set at 2.  The first night I used the machine, I got close to dozing off several times, but right at the point of going to sleep, I would wake up feeling like I was being suffocated.  After searching on this board, I then adjusted my pressure range to 7-20, turned off the ramp, and changed the EPR to 3.  This seems to work much better, so I don't seem to have the suffocation feeling any longer, or at least its not as dramatic.

Every night I use the equipment from 30 min to 2 hours and never am able to fall asleep.  I eventually just get to the point I'm frustrated and take off the mask and go to sleep.  I feel like that just the wearing the mask is enough of a distraction to keep me from falling asleep.

The only time I have yet to actually fall asleep wearing the equipment is when I only slept for a few hours one night, and I took a nap the next day because I was completely exhausted.  I was able to sleep with the equipment on for about an hour.

I am also very hot natured.  The air coming out of the machine seems to be a bit warm which is also causing me to feel warm.  I set the hose temperature to 70°F and turned the humidity level down to 1 which helped a bit, but the air still seems a bit warm.

The only other thing I notice is that the sound of every breath that I take is a bit louder when wearing the mask.

The warmness of the air and the extra breathing sounds seem to be just enough to keep me from going to sleep.

I have some Oscar data, but since I really haven't been asleep, I'm not sure its of any use.  the AHI scores are always 0.  The machine does increase the pressure up to around 9 occasionally if I wear it long enough.

What should I try next?

Thanks!
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#2
RE: New User
Have you tried other masks? I had trouble sleeping with the first one I tried, the N30i. It was too much gear for me and quite loud. Now I’m using the P10 and it makes a big difference. Finding the right mask seems to be key for a lot of people.
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#3
RE: New User
Try using it while watching tv or reading, the longer you have it on the more you will get accustomed to it.
Apnea (80-100%) 10 seconds, Hypopnea (50-80%) 10 seconds, Flow Limits (0-50%) not timed  Cervical Collar - Dealing w DME - Chart Organizing
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#4
RE: New User
Thanks for the suggestions. I think I will try out the P10 mask. Hopefully it will be a bit less noisy.
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#5
RE: New User
I want to second what staceyburke wrote, and even to take it a little further.

You now have a counterproductive association between using the machine and trying to sleep. So I think you might benefit from a reboot. If you want to try that, here is what I'd suggest.

Stop using the machine for a week.

Order a different mask plus a hose stand (aka hose lift). The masks that route air through tubes that run across the face tend to be a bit noisier, so I'd recommend the ResMed P10, with a starter pack so you can try the different sizes. The Hose Buddy hose lift is a solid product; right now, I'm liking the Houdini lift, which swivels very well and collapses down to hide behind a pillow during the day. You might want to use a non-slick hose cover so the loop that suspends the hose can have adequate traction. You will need to play around to find the right amount of slack.

Also ask your doctor for a sleep aid, e.g., Ambien, which you will use just to get you over the hump when you return to night-time use.

After a week's break, spend a week using the machine for several hours a day. Set it up outside your bedroom, somewhere where you can read or watch TV. Try making further adjustments to temperature and humidity, which are very much personal preferences. (I don't use any heat setting, and for me humidity of 2 works well.) Don't use the machine at night.

Next try using the machine at night, with a little extra help from Ambien or something similar. If you haven't fallen asleep after about half an hour, stop trying. But keep at it; the night will come when you conk out. Don't beat up on yourself if you don't make it through the whole night at first; that will come with time.
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#6
RE: New User
Dormeo - Thanks for the suggestions. I was thinking about asking the doctor for some ambien or another sleep aid. I have taken trazodone in the past to help me sleep and it works, but it was really tough when I stopped taking it and I don't want to go through the withdrawal process again if I don't have to.

I just went to my DME supplier and got a P10 mask (luckily at no cost since I'm a new user). I will try it out going forward. I tried it out for a few minutes and it will definitely be quieter. I think the tubes running up my face on the P30i contributed to the noise, warmth and my ability to lay like I want to. I think the P10 will help with all of these.

I will definitely look into the hose lifts as well.
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