Some people take to their therapy right away while others need more time to get comfortable. Here are some important tips for adjusting to a CPAP mask and machine when you are trying to get to sleep.
Remember the goal is to make your therapy a key part of your health that you use every night. CPAP is the best treatment option for you at this point in time but it will only be of benefit to you when it is being used. It is important to become familiar with your mask and feel comfortable wearing it. Try using your sleep therapy equipment for a few short periods during the day while you are awake. A good place to start is to wear it while watching TV or reading.
The most common problem with therapy occur when your mask does not fit properly. If your mask is not fitting properly you may not be able to go to sleep a easily as you should. Adjustments to your mask, to improve seal and comfort, can be made during the day. In the first instance, stand or sit in front of the mirror with your mask on and make necessary adjustments to improve comfort. Once you have made the adjustments for comfort connect your mask to the CPAP tubing, lie down and turn your machine on. Your face contour changes when you are lying down so this is a very important step in checking for seal and comfort.
Improving your sleep hygiene is an important step to making your sleep therapy as successful as possible.
The following tips may help improve your sleep hygiene.
As mentioned before, it is important to go to bed when you feel tired. This is also true when starting out on sleep therapy. If you go to be when you aren’t feeling tired, you may not be able to switch off. Add the addition of something new and unfamiliar like a CPAP machine, and you might find in unusually hard to fall asleep. Your mind may keep you awake by thinking too much about your mask and machine.
Do a few things that you find relaxing 1-2 hours before bed. We are all different, so do what ever works for you! For example:
Using technology such as texting, checking e-mail, scrolling through social media at night directly before bed can keep you lying awake for longer at night. Even watching television can stimulate the mind and promote alertness, just the opposite of what you need to go to sleep. It’s important to switch off any devices one hour before bed. This will help your mind and body prepare for restful sleep.
Remember, it takes a while for most people to get comfortable using a CPAP device and mask every night. Be patient with yourself. Doing all of the above steps will give you a good chance of being successful on sleep therapy.