onetiredmama wrote:I'm still in the adjustment period with my CPAP and I think I'm doing a pretty good job of falling asleep with the thing, which was what I was afraid would be my obstacle. But I keep taking it off at some point during the night, and I've been really surprised by how little the machine says I've used it some nights. I think I'm being conscious of the need to wear it when I'm trying to fall asleep, but if I wake up and it's annoying me, I'm taking it off instinctively. Does anyone have tips to overcome this??
At the beginning some folks will use a bit of tape to physically tape the mask (lightly) to their face. The idea is that the minor pain induced by ripping the taped mask off might be enough to wake them up enough for them to consciously realize what the heck they are doing and put the mask back on.
A second major thing to do is this: If you wake up at any point in the night and you find the mask is NOT on your face, then put the mask back on before you return to sleep. In other words, never consciously
allow yourself to sleep without the mask on.
If you wake up and the mask is annoying you to the point where you consciously
cannot stand to have it on any more, then you need to force yourself to get out of bed and go into a different room. Only go back to bed once you are both calm enough and sleepy enough to mask up again. In other words, never allow yourself to consciously remove the mask and go back to sleep without it on your face.
The first few nights, I had a lot of trouble with leaks when I changed position, and I do change position a fair amount as I sleep.
Changing positions with a six foot hose attached to your face is a learned art. It will get better as you get more experience.
I've since made some adjustments to the mask that seem to be helping, but I sometimes still get leaks when I roll to my side. I suspect the mask is coming off after rolling all the way from one side to the other, which I did a lot pre-CPAP and is a lot harder to do smoothly with the extra gear attached and when I'm trying to fall asleep and do it I am prone to leaks.
There are several standard things people try in order to make it easier to move around in bed. Here are two common strategies:
1) Hang the hose. You can sometimes route the hose over the headboard and that's enough. Or you can buy or make a hose hanger system that keeps the hose up and out of your way. For many people, hanging the hose ends a lot of the leaky mask problems caused by repeatedly turning over in bed.
2) If you are a side sleeper you can run the hose under the covers and slightly grip in one or both of your hands. As you turn over, the hands can grasp the hose and turn it with you. I find that I often go to sleep with one hand on the small hose near where it attaches to my Swift FX and the other hand farther down the hose. Whenever I turn over, my hand unconsciously guide the hose to come with me and prevent it from pulling the mask off my nose. Having the a hand on the hose right where it meets the mask also allows me to reseat the mask with a minimum amount of conscious effort.
The first few nights I had the mask, I did take it off rather than try to adjust it when it would start leaking....then the next time I woke up and realized I was maskless, I tried again.
First, GOOD for you that you are working on breaking the bad habit of just taking the mask off before it becomes an established bad habit
Next a suggestion on what to do when the Swift mask is starting to leak. Often times all it takes to reseal the mask is a quick pull on the mask to get the cushion or nasal pillows off the mask followed by a gentle resettling of the mask back on your face. The Swift masks use air filled cushions (nasal pillow walls) to establish the seal. By pulling the mask away from your face, you allow the cushion/nasal pillow walls) to fully inflate with air so that when you resettle the mask against your face you get a good seal. It takes far less time to do this than it does to explain how to do it. And as you get more experience doing it, it becomes far easier to do and eventually becomes a muscle memory---i.e. something you can do without consciously thinking about how you're doing it.