How long till CPAP works? (yes I've searched!)

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How long till CPAP works? (yes I've searched!)

Postby LTG1 » Tue Jul 05, 2011 5:17 pm

How long does it take to get the benefits of CPAP once you start wearing the mask?

It's a basic question, but so many questions are similar but different, I haven't found an answer yet. To clarify:

1) Forget how long it takes to get used to CPAP. I know that is a major issue worthy of lots of discussion, but let's assume you have been able to wear it on a daily basis...

2) I know it varies - but what about in general? For example if someone asks about recovery from the common cold, we can say: The majority feel better after 7 days, 20% need 14 days to recover, etc, etc (made up stats).

3) If it matters, or if anyone cares, my specifics: Just completed third night of CPAP and in the morning the machine index is showing around 3.0 (good right?). On my sleep study I was only able to score 9 full apneas, but managed to score over 100 hypopneas :). Oxygen low point was 78%. Overall index was over 40.

After 3 nights I definitely feel different - but it's a weird feeling - groggy for a much longer period of time, like I was put to sleep by animal tranquilizer dart.

I think I feel a bit better but definitely not "cured". My main hope is to regain my ability to concentrate for long periods. I'm a computer programmer and currently I can work for about an hour before it gets really difficult.

I want to be hopeful!

Thank you -
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Postby Janknitz » Tue Jul 05, 2011 6:25 pm

The answer is:

Longer than 3 days.

Really, how does anyone know? Everyone is different!!! You want an exact answer, but there isn't one. Even if someone did a study and computed an average, it doesn't mean that you will fall within that average. And it also wouldn't mean that you are not going to get used to this if you still haven't adjusted after the average time has elapsed.

The bottom line is, you have to do the work. You have to use it and use it and use it. You have to eliminate the problems if they are barriers to using the machine. No shortcuts available, but you can help things along by learning to access your data and watching it to make sure that the therapy is really working for you.

One morning you will wake up to realize that you put the mask on without much thought, slept all night and feel pretty darn good. I don't know when that morning will be, but it will come. This is a great goal to work toward because then you will be able to see your progress.
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Yeah, I'd like to know, too!

Postby jamjar62 » Tue Jul 05, 2011 6:36 pm

I've wondered the same thing! So far, even though I'm sleeping with less than 3 AHI (down from 28 in sleep study), I can't say I feel measurably better. I feel groggy and muddle-headed throughout the day. So far, it's waaay worse than pre-CPAP. I don't get it. I expected to wake up refreshed and ready to take on the world! Not so much....

The only benefit thus far has been that my husband can now sleep in the same bed as me since I don't snore the house down. I guess that's something positive but I was hoping for a little more.

Let's keep in touch on the board and compare progress. I got my CPAP last Thursday and have slept with it the past 5 days. Other than some mask issues last night, I've adjusted really well to wearing and sleeping with it. It's the waking up in the morning and still feeling !@#! I'm having issues with.

I just read Janknitz reply (do you really knit, Jan?) and I know patience is the answer but dangit, it's not an answer I like! :-x
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Postby Janknitz » Tue Jul 05, 2011 7:16 pm

I just read Janknitz reply (do you really knit, Jan?) and I know patience is the answer but dangit, it's not an answer I like!


:lol:
I want some patience, and I want it RIGHT NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Yes, I knit, and sometimes after I cast on, I want the whole sweater to be DONE NOW. But that doesn't work. One stitch at a time, that's all I can do. A good metaphore for CPAP.
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Re: How long till CPAP works? (yes I've searched!)

Postby Todzo » Wed Jul 06, 2011 6:06 am

LTG1 wrote:How long does it take to get the benefits of CPAP once you start wearing the mask?

It's a basic question, but so many questions are similar but different, I haven't found an answer yet. To clarify:

1) Forget how long it takes to get used to CPAP. I know that is a major issue worthy of lots of discussion, but let's assume you have been able to wear it on a daily basis...

2) I know it varies - but what about in general? For example if someone asks about recovery from the common cold, we can say: The majority feel better after 7 days, 20% need 14 days to recover, etc, etc (made up stats).

3) If it matters, or if anyone cares, my specifics: Just completed third night of CPAP and in the morning the machine index is showing around 3.0 (good right?). On my sleep study I was only able to score 9 full apneas, but managed to score over 100 hypopneas :). Oxygen low point was 78%. Overall index was over 40.

After 3 nights I definitely feel different - but it's a weird feeling - groggy for a much longer period of time, like I was put to sleep by animal tranquilizer dart.

I think I feel a bit better but definitely not "cured". My main hope is to regain my ability to concentrate for long periods. I'm a computer programmer and currently I can work for about an hour before it gets really difficult.

I want to be hopeful!

Thank you -


Hey there hopeful!

Assuming that your CPAP therapy is going well:

In the first 30 days I would expect you to experience-

REM rebound. You will want to sleep and sleep. You many note that your are dreaming more, but you may simply be aware of sort of a time where you feel kind of satisfied and no longer feel the need to sleep and sleep (two to three weeks).

You will start to feel it when you are tired again. It is kind of like someone put tape over that silly "exhaustion warning light" which "must" be broke since it is on all the time -- well now it starts to come on and mean something. You will feel it more when you are tired.

You will experience improved performance at work and home. Do not expect the world here, you have been strangling yourself for a long time, damage to many systems is in the process of repair, and stamina - especially the high performing executive functioning you need to program - will come back slow. CPAP is only part of what you need to develop back as much stamina as possible. Think good eating, good moving (yoga, sports, cardio, strength, accuracy), and good loving as in social and love life. When tired rest but let the good times roll.

You need to be aware of the fact that if you exhaust yourself your therapy will be less likely to work well. Stress causes inflammation, inflammation frustrates CPAP. You are likely very good at ignoring how you feel -- well, it is high time to change that. Get the software for your CPAP ASAP and use it!! It will help you to know when your therapy is not going well and that is information you need to know!!

To six months:

You have a lot to learn about what happened to you and what you can do about it. Read the books, articles, research papers (sleep medicine is a new and rapidly developing science) and spend time on the forums. This way, you will know about the new therapy when it comes out and hopefully avoid the pot holes others have fallen into.

All going well, you should experience a slower but steady increase in performance. This is also enough time, however, for some of the damage to become apparent in that blood sugar, cardio vascular, executive functioning, and such sorry realities as professional reputation issues may surface. It was probably many years before OSA was caught and damage to the life was occurring all that time. It is a time of finding out what was damaged (so fails sooner than hoped) and what works to get the most out of what you have left.

Looking at your numbers I would guess that while I am on the very affected portion of the damage graph (see my AHI but especially my SpO2 minimum in my signature) you are only about a third as far along as I. In my case after I was proscribed with CPAP a severe trauma occurred to me only related to OSA in that OSA led to the poverty which made me more vulnerable to the assault and robbery that occurred. In my case I will be a bit surprised if I obtain more than 35% of what I would have been without the untreated OSA and trauma. In your case I would expect you to return to about 90% of your unaffected functioning within six months to a year provided that your CPAP therapy is effective and you make good healthy lifestyle changes which you keep during that time. I make this wild guess using what I have read in thousands of posts here, the hundreds of research abstracts I have read, hundreds of articles, dozens of full research papers, dozens of web seminars I have attended, and hand full of books, along with my own silly tendency to gather a lot of data about what happens to me daily.

Carry on young person, you have a lot of good life ahead of you. Please do enjoy it!

Todzo
AHI=52 SpO2 Nadir=55% (!!!) Focus & Vigilance problems w/PTSD from Trauma
CPAP since 2003 Respironics REMstar Auto A-flex with EncoreViewer and SleepyHead SW
Pulse oximeter CMS-50-F, night audio recorded via Audacity or Linux “sox”. Zeo.
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Postby K5MOW » Wed Jul 06, 2011 7:56 am

Well it took me about one mounth or more to fill a lot bettter. It is now almost one year and I would never sleep with out my CPAP. I fill I have a new life. Give your self some time.

Roger
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CPAP set to 11 Centimeters

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Respironics Comfort Gel Full Face Mask,
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HAD TO JOIN AND REPLY

Postby CURT_IN_ORANGE » Fri Jul 08, 2011 7:26 pm

Read this from JANKNITZ......."One morning you will wake up to realize that you put the mask on without much thought, slept all night and feel pretty darn good. I don't know when that morning will be, but it will come. This is a great goal to work toward because then you will be able to see your progress"......50yr old male..just got cpap machine after study said i had 67 episodes an hour...have felt like !@#! for years...have asked doc for test after test....lyme even...then i suggested a sleep study...not blaming doc for not picking up on it but i am so very tired of feeling !@#!....tired.headaches....moody......etc etc..only been little over a week but read what was said and ill tell ya...i hope the heck that will be me!!!
:lol:
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Postby Linda » Fri Jul 08, 2011 9:22 pm

Hi Curt, and welcome to the forum.

Just make sure you have followup appointments. If all is working correctly .... no mask leaking problem, using the correct mask (if mouth breathing, you need a different mask), correct cpap pressure, etc. .... then it can be a matter of time and yes, patience.

I know it's frustrating, not knowing when you're going to feel better. But hang in there and get followup care. Sometimes there needs to be a minor change (mask, cpap or whatever) that can make a difference.

But as was said earlier, this is a good place to track your progress. For some, it helps noting down any changes. When I started using cpap, these forums were helpful, they were like a journal for me. And of course, it helps to find others going through the same thing.

Good luck and let us know how things go.


Linda
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Postby jamjar62 » Sat Jul 09, 2011 1:20 pm

Linda,

My doctor that sent me for the study is an internal med doc. Is that who I should follow up with? The med supply place I got my ResMed from told me to bring it in every month or so so they could check the data but they haven't seemed very interested in some early problems I'm having. Kind of like "You've got your CPAP, we've got our money, see ya."

Are there docs out there who simply do sleep stuff? Is that who I should go to?? I'm confused who to follow up with. What do the majority of people do?

Karen
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Re: HAD TO JOIN AND REPLY

Postby smroutz » Sun Jul 17, 2011 5:37 am

CURT_IN_ORANGE wrote:Read this from JANKNITZ......."One morning you will wake up to realize that you put the mask on without much thought, slept all night and feel pretty darn good. I don't know when that morning will be, but it will come. This is a great goal to work toward because then you will be able to see your progress"......50yr old male..just got cpap machine after study said i had 67 episodes an hour...have felt like !@#! for years...have asked doc for test after test....lyme even...then i suggested a sleep study...not blaming doc for not picking up on it but i am so very tired of feeling !@#!....tired.headaches....moody......etc etc..only been little over a week but read what was said and ill tell ya...i hope the heck that will be me!!!
:lol:

I love your answer I too have just gotten my cpap machine and have used it for 3 days and the first night I slept pretty good second night pretty good but on third night I woke up feeling like !@#! have a headache that won't go away and feel like I am catching a cold or something and now am wondering if I will ever get use to this and is this normal to wake up and feel sick???? Kinda afraid to use the machine, but do want to. They told me from my sleep study that I had 97 episodes an hour and I know that's not good. my machine is an s9 series with an H5I.So is this something I have to learn to adjust to will this feeling go away or should I call my dr.?????
signed confused!
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Re: How long till CPAP works? (yes I've searched!)

Postby CURT_IN_ORANGE » Sun Jul 17, 2011 10:02 am

JUST CURIOUS AS TO WHY YOUR DR DIDNT PRESCRIBE MACHINE WITH OXYGEN FOR YOU....NOT SURE BUT 97 EPISODES IS VERY HIGH.. MY SISTER INLAW WAS AROUND THAT AREA AND HAS OXYGEN....BEEN A FEW WEEKS FOR ME..FINALLY GOT PILLOW MASK TO FIT RIGHT...TECH DIDNT HAVE ADJUSTED RIGHT AND IT KEPT COMING OFF BACK OFF MY HEAD...DONT FEEL AS TIRED OR MOODY AS USUAL...BUT STILL DONT HAVE THAT REFRESHED FEELING UPON AWAKENING...BUT FEEL IN FEW MORE WEEKS SHOULD START TO FEEL BETTER
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Re: How long till CPAP works? (yes I've searched!)

Postby MisterEast » Tue Jul 19, 2011 8:38 am

My OSA was described as "severe" when it was diagnosed. I have been on the machine now for 6 weeks. I was noticeably better after 2 weeks, despite minor problems like nose irritation. I still occasionally pull the mask off at night, but I actually now look forward to putting my mask on when I lay down to sleep, because I have already associated, in my mind, putting it on and not feeling like a dead fish when I awaken.
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Re: How long till CPAP works? (yes I've searched!)

Postby CURT_IN_ORANGE » Tue Jul 19, 2011 12:41 pm

Took my few weeks to get nasal pillows in right adjustment...now i can move around very freely and never leak..if so only for half a sec...so getting that to fit right took away frustration of thing coming off all the time..and nice going to sleep knowing it will now stay put...still looking forward to that refreshed feeling upon awakening.
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Re: How long till CPAP works? (yes I've searched!)

Postby Morrigan » Tue Jul 19, 2011 1:01 pm

Whenever you've completely payed off your sleep debt you will feel the effects of the CPAP working.

And since it's impossible to figure out exactly how much sleep debt you've accumulated for however long you've had sleep apnea, and since you can't really pinpoint the exact time you had sleep apnea....

Then there will never ever be an answer to the "how long" question.

In fact, I believe feeling worse after the CPAP is a good thing, as it means your body is not accustomed to actually sleeping properly, remember that trying to reverse something that's been going on for months or even years isn't easy. The good news is, you're feeling "something", whether that be good or bad.
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