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I’m new and need guidance

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Lauri +0 points · almost 4 years ago Original Poster

Hello! I just picked up my RESMED today, spent close to two hours going over every detail with a wonderfully helpful RT. She helped fit the nasal mask, do air leak tests, etc. I told her it seemed more difficult to exhale than it did to inhale, so she switched my setting to “3” — I’m hoping you know what that means. She said it’s the least resistant setting available on my machine.

Last night was awful. I woke several times, feeling like I was suffocating, so I was very excited to nap this afternoon and try my new machine. Sadly, within about 20 minutes, my nasal passages felt stuffy, and that sensation combined with feeling like I was working harder to exhale, led to my removing the mask & turning the machine off. I tried again about 20 minutes later, because the feeling of stuffiness had subsided, but again felt like I couldn’t breathe well, really swollen nasal passages and “work” to exhale.

I’m so discouraged already. Dreading bedtime tonight. I KNOW I need this, I want to be compliant. I’m just so discouraged. Any suggestions?

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wiredgeorge +1 point · almost 4 years ago Sleep Enthusiast

Therapy is a process and while the DME tech seems to be helpful, it seems the mask may not be the right one for you. Since you didn't mention which nasal mask, can't offer any suggestions but I tried a nasal mask and could not exhale through the very tiny exhale holes and the mask filled with moisture and felt like I was drowning. Today I use an Amara View mask where the mask fits up under my nose and over my mouth. I found it most comfortable of all the masks I tried. Won't say it will work for you but you may need to try another mask and be aware that the holes for exhale are various sizes on various masks and if you feel you can't exhale with the current mask, it may not be a good choice. Hang in there and be aware there will be some experimentation with equipment to find the stuff that works for you!

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Lauri +0 points · almost 4 years ago Original Poster

Thank you!

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jnk +1 point · almost 4 years ago

Glad you got a helpful RRT. I understand they usually like chocolate chip cookies. :-)

Sounds like she used the pressure relief to lower the pressure when you breathe out.

First nights are often, though not always, awful, so don't consider it a failure. Consider it part of the process of getting things perfect in the future.

If you felt like you were suffocating, it may be, just maybe, that the pressure was too low for you, not too high. I only mention that because that is counter-intuitive. This can be especially true with ramp settings. Discuss this right away with your RRT.

As for the stuffiness, that can often be lessened as a problem by getting the humidity right. But even when humidity is adjusted perfectly on your humidifier, it can still take a few weeks for your sinuses to adjust to what is going on, so time may help that on its own.

But there is no need to be discouraged yet. You have a machine that is going to help you a lot, and you managed to use it part of the night last night. For the first night, call that a success and pat yourself on the back, please. You done good. Be proud of it.

You are asking good questions and are interested in problem-solving, so I can tell you are going to be a success with this. Think of it as a journey you are just starting out on and you are still getting your legs underneath you--but you'll get there. You will look back on these early days with pride and satisfaction one day, trust me.

The main thing is finding the balance between giving it time and getting help from the RRT and from fellow users on online forums like this one. Don't ever suffer in silence. Be vocal. Your doc, your RRT, and everyone in the online forums are on board with being helpful to you, so you aren't going it alone in any way. Whatever problem you run into is one someone else has faced and overcome; let everyone be a resource to you. It is, and will be, worth it.

A few hours of sleep on CPAP can do you more good than many hours of "sleep" without it, particularly when your pressures are right, as verified by a machine with full efficacy data. That data, such as leak and AHI reports, may be available from your machine, and that too may be something to discuss with your team--not just compliance.

-jeff

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Lauri +0 points · almost 4 years ago Original Poster

Thank you!

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SJMEDTECH +0 points · over 3 years ago

Go to Youtube and search up Resmed airsense 10. There are apnea DR's that show how to enter the clinical menu and what each feature is for. Hopefully you have a humidifier as I find that option most helpful for stuffy nose and dry mouth. If you get woken up from the machine running high pressure this is where being able to adjust the limits yourself gives immediate ability to validate and correct issues. Point is not to wake up and not to have a high AHI. Achieve those two things and your in heaven. It will take trial and error to get there but oh its worth it! Mask type, size, adjustment of limits, ERP, ramp, all of it matters. You do need to find your personal settings that satisfy it. It's work no doubt. Being able to get into the menu and determine it yourself will save you time. money and sleepless nights... Go to youtube.

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