New to Apnea? Helpful tips to ensure success

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New to Apnea - helpful tips to ensure success

Understanding sleep apnea

A video on sleep disordered breathing & two forum articles explaining sleep apnea

New to CPAP – The Process

Defining the process & what to expect (from denial through getting a CPAP machine)

Obtaining medical records

Obtaining your records can help you greatly. HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996) is United States legislation that provides data privacy and security provisions for safeguarding medical information. Under HIPAA, patients have certain rights to their own medical records ( HIPPA Privacy Rule & Patients' rights ) These rights include the right to obtain a copy of your Sleep study/studies, titration records and prescription(s). Obtaining a copy of these items can help patients form a greater understanding of their condition and may help avoid a repeat sleep study or titration.
For our Australian readers. qupp-benefits-and-risks-for-consumers-of-pathology-testing~qupp-what-should-i-know

Prescription - CPAP - APAP - BIPAP

Sample Prescriptions & Machine Recommendations

Machine choices - read this before accepting a new machine

Patients are encouraged to avoid getting "stuck" with a "dumb brick" CPAP machine (a CPAP that is not fully data-capable).
To avoid being "fooled" by a greedy Durable Medical Equipment (DME) provider, patients should read the "Machine choices" Wiki article.
By obtaining a data-capable CPAP machine, the patient and doctor can monitor the effectiveness of CPAP treatment on an ongoing basis.
Using Free PC Software along with a data-capable CPAP machine will enable doctor & patient to monitor and chart the effectiveness of CPAP treatment. Go to Apnea Board's Private Files & Links area to learn how to obtain free PC software for CPAP machines. It's necessary to register for a free forum account to access that area.

Setup Manuals - Change your own CPAP Pressure

The nitty gritty of entering into the "Clinician Mode" or "Setup Mode" of a CPAP machine in order to change pressures and other settings.

Optimizing therapy

The basic steps to adjusting CPAP therapy for maximum effectiveness


Data is the key to getting good feedback and the OSCAR software is among the best PC applications to help examine the effectiveness of CPAP therapy.

Mask Primer

Great information about selecting, fitting and using a CPAP mask & minimizing leaks

The Benefits of Automatic CPAP Machines

Article - The benefits of Automatic CPAP Machines

Dealing with a DME

read this Wiki article Dealing with a DME

Travel Compliance Letters

PR Dreamstation EU 2016 Travel Compliance Letter
PR System One 60 Series EU 2016 Travel Compliance Letter
ResMed 2017 Travel Compliance Letter
Download the above letter(s) for use.

Help with posting a forum message

Patients need to register for a free forum account to post a forum message.
The Help button at top of every forum page is useful for obtaining help with a member's forum account. Forum Members may also ask for help in the Member Account Help Forum.
Members are encouraged to completely fill out their member profile. This is so others can offer customized help tailored to the individual.

Advice on posting questions in the forum

* Starting a new thread (topic) and putting all related questions in that thread helps to retain the history of the topic so that it's easier for others to provide help in responses to any questions or problems.
* Members should try to post as much information as possible to make it easier for others to provide advice or recommendations.
* Using multiple posts (in the same thread) is acceptable.
* It's helpful for members to include the specific type of sleep apnea or sleep disorder they have (Obstructive, Central, Complex, Hypopnea, RLS, etc.)
* If possible, members should post a copy of their sleep study or at least the summary of that study.
* Include a screenshot of daily OSCAR charts. The charts provide solid data that is used to help spot issues and form a strategy to maximize CPAP therapy settings.
* Members should include other pertinent information, such how they feel physically or what is giving them the greatest difficulty,

Managing Expectations

New users of CPAP often ask on the forum, "When will I start to feel better", or I don't feel that rush of energy I was expecting". CPAP or bilevel is a treatment for sleep disordered breathing that can cause arousals and prevent restorative sleep. The objective of treatment is to minimize those respiratory disturbances to allow "normal" sleep. This means sleeping long enough and without excessive arousals to allow normal waking function. You should not feel sick any more, or fall asleep inappropriately while driving or going about daily routines.
The expectation of a euphoric rush is over-stated or even feeling great, may be unrealistic. The majority of people using CPAP feel "functional" or perhaps normal. That first good sleep after years of deprivation can feel manic, but it eventually settles down to a normal life where your sleep is like everyone else's. How many people without apnea rave about having great sleep? New users should expect it to take time (weeks or months) to heal from years of sleep disruption, and they should expect to feel "normal". Feelings of chronic fatigue may be related to other health or lifestyle issues, rather than the therapy. Continued feelings of fatigue may require medical assessment of health, hormone levels, medications, exercise, weight, or many other issues. Recognize CPAP therapy is a tool to solve a particular set of problems, but may not result in feeling rejuvenated.