Frankly, I don't worry about the tube much. When I breathe out, most of the air goes out through the nose piece and there is constant air pressure coming in through the tube, so not many germs are going the other way. The air coming in is filtered by the machine and is normal household air. if you don't walk around wearing a mask in the house, why be suspicious of that same air when it is brought through your machine? I do use a steri-wipe on my nose piece periodically. I could do it every day, but it doesn't seem to make any difference.
Wow! I wish I could answer your questions. I am using an AirSense10 since Feb. 2015, and really like it. I have used a CPAP machine since March of 2005 and this is the best one so far. Initially, my target pressure was 7 with a range above and below that. I don't mind the ramp up as it is only seconds usually. I log my scores from each night to see how I am doing and to watch for changes that might indicate an adjustment is necessary. When I saw my average number of sleep interruptions per night going up, the store I get my supplies from checked my records and saw I needed a higher average pressure. I had to go to the sleep clinic and they adjusted my machine for me. My average sleep interruptions dropped back to what is a normal range for me. I asked why the interruptions went up and was told it is because my throat tissue sag more as I get older. I asked if there were any exercises I could do to strengthen them and was told there weren't any.
When I log my scores, I enter all the data for each night, then log the number of sleep interruptions and the score on different sheets. My most frequent score is 100, followed by 99, 98, 97 etc. My most frequent interruptions per hour is .5 followed by .2 I have gotten 0 14 times. so far. I recently noted that when I got through with a big project, my sleep quality improved--fewer interruptions and higher scores--like 100 seven nights in a row and two nights with 0 sleep interruptions. I didn't realize there might be a correlation between stress and sleep quality.
I fall asleep easily, often within seconds, and am never fighting the machine. I pull the sheet and blanket over my head to keep all the machine air from bothering my wife. But, my weight is stable, so my issues are very different from yours. I easily sleep 7 or more hours/night without having to get up.
My current nose mask is an AIRFIT N20 Med sys - Amer and is the most comfortable mask I have had. No strap marks, no nose creases or skin breaking down.
I hope someone else with more specific knowledge on adjustments, etc. can answer your questions.
I do other things to stay healthy overall. Due to arthritis "everywhere", I take a water aerobics class at least twice a week, followed by light weight lifting to maintain strength. I weigh myself each time I am at the fitness club and maintain a fairly healthy weight. I never get down to my target weight, but am never more than 10 lbs over it either. The only thing that changes as it fluctuates is my stomach size. I have had 4 serious medical situations, each of which was correctable and a one-time operation or treatment as the answer, so I don't take good health for granted and do what I can to take care of myself. So far, it seems to be working. That doesn't mean I am home-free, but I do what I can and research shows to be effective in contributing to good health.
Good luck to you!
I would think something needs to be adjusted with your CPAP machine or mask. My apps were never that high to begin with, and with my machine adjusted correctly and mask fitting properly, my most frequent interruption rate is .5 times an hour. 2nd most frequent is .2. When my interruptions started to climb, I asked my CPAP supply person about it and when they checked my scores, they could see I needed more air pressure. The sleep clinic folks adjusted my range to a higher level and everything has been better since then. I am using an AirSense10 that gives me a score each night that I log in order to watch for patterns or something being amiss, like too much mask leakage requiring a simple adjustment of the straps, or perhaps a new nose piece. I have been a CPAP user since March of 2005 and it has proven to be literally a life saver. I think I have missed 6 nights in those 12+ years. My quality of life is everything I could hope it to be, thanks to getting good sleep. I wish the same for you. Check with your sleep clinic or machine provider for advice. The provider people really know their stuff and can do a good job adjusting things or giving advice.
Waking up and having apneas are two different issues. I never woke during the night with my apneas. It was only all the things going wrong in my life and getting depressed that made me want to see my doctor. He recommended a sleep study and that was when it was discovered. I seldom snored either. Being tired all the time, having no problem solving ability or creativity, forgetting how to do my job, not being able to learn anything new and becoming depressed were the triggers that sent me to my doctor. When I did the sleep study, they told me my depression came from my inability to dream. Your mind needs to dream or you become depressed. Not being able to learn anything new was because I had no deep sleep and long-term memories are only formed in deep sleep. Once I got my CPAP machine and started to use it every night all night, all my abilities came back. A dark future suddenly looked bright again. I wish the same wonderful results for you!
I have been using a CPAP now for 12 years. Recently, my apneas started to increase and when I asked about it at my supplier wondering if I needed a new mask or something, they checked on the computer where they could see at what pressure they were happening. My CPAP needed to be set for a higher pressure range than I had been using. When I asked the sleep clinic about this, they said the throat tissues get saggier with age. I asked if there was anything I could do about that, like singing or something to strengthen my throat lining and I was told no. They adjusted my pressure range and things have been great since then. It might be that your machine is not adjusted properly for your needs. I have logged all my sleep scores since I got my latest machine in Feb. of 2015, and my most frequent apnea score is .5 times an hour, followed by .2 times an hour. 13 nights I had 0. I use these numbers as guides that might point to a need to fix something with the machine or my mask.
I pay attention to the mask seal score to give me a clue if I need to adjust something or replace the nose piece. I got my newest CPAP in February of 2015 and have logged every night's score since then. My most frequent score is 100, then 99, then 98. My most frequent AHI is .5, followed by .2. The scores may not seem relevant for any one night, but I use them to spot a change or a trend that I might want to pay attention to. When my AHI climbs unusually high for me, I usually need to make a mask adjustment. Too much leakage means less going through my nose and not enough pressure to keep my airways open. I love waking up feeling rested. My mind works better, I get more done, I remember things and can learn new things and can be creative and solve problems. All those attributes I had relied on were gone due to my apnea. It was the depression that came with this that made me see my doctor and explain what was happening. He knew I needed a sleep study. The sleep study indicated I had no deep sleep, which is why I could not learn anything new--long term memories are only formed in deep sleep and I had none. The depression came from lack of dreaming--I could not dream and the mind needs to do that. All the abilities I had counted on in work and life came back once I got my machine. Good luck with your efforts. It was literally a life saver for me.
I used to nap without my mask, too. But the more I thought about it and the damage it causes me, I finally decided to wear a mask whenever I sleep. It's not just about getting enough sleep, it's the side effects that apnea causes that is worry some.
The last two times I napped without my CPAP, I had the same dream. It was a Star Trek episode and Spock was telling Captain Kirk: "We've entered an interference zone and we have to get the ship out of here!" I awoke then gasping for breath. When you stop breathing, your heart starts racing trying to get oxygen to the brain. When that doesn't work, your body gives you a jolt of adrenaline to make you gasp and start breathing again. Adrenaline irritates your arteries, which is a dangerous thing, and your body then lays down cholesterol over the irritation. I had my sleep study done in March of 2005 and started using my CPAP machine every night from then on. In December of 2005, I had an emergency quadruple by-pass due to my clogged heart arteries. My problem was only discovered when I asked my doctor if I could switch blood pressure medications. As soon as I got off Atenolol, my angina was discovered--caused by those clogged arteries.
When I picked up my latest model of CPAP machine in February of 2015, I was told that there is a 100% correlation between sleep apnea and atherosclerosis. If you have sleep apnea, you have clogging of the arteries. A nap may produce negligible results, but why do anything to jeopardize your health long term? I had no good answer and simply started using my machine. I can just put my mask on, lay on my side with a pillow over my head to make it dark and quickly fall asleep. My new machine tracks how much sleep I get and adds the nap time into its calculations so my results are more accurate. I like getting those scores of 99 and 100.
Hey Morgan, It took me 3 nights to get used to wearing the mask. Each time I woke and wanted it off, I told myself "No, keep it on and you will get used to it and soon you won't even notice it." That proved to be true. The relief started just after that when I would wake in the morning with a smile on my face because it felt so good to be rested. It took several weeks for my abilities to come back, but they all did. Now when I put the mask on, it's like a signal that it is time to sleep and I often fall asleep in seconds, rather than minutes. I am a side sleeper, so I make sure the hose is going up over my head and around to the machine. I pull the sheet and blanket up over my head so my wife can keep reading if she wants to and the cold air coming out from my nose piece won't bother her. I am bald and the blanket keeps my head warm at night, too. I had done a lot of wilderness camping and was used to sleeping anywhere, so I am not too fussy and fall asleep easily whether in bed or on the floor. But, I always use my CPAP to help me get healthy sleep. I need a pillow between my knees since they are so bony and hurt each other without the pillow. I also use a posture pillow with an indentation for my head. Changing positions at night usually is a wakeful experience so I can reposition my knee pillow, but I go back to sleep almost instantly. I almost always get 7+ hours of sleep per night. My latest mask is an Airfit and it is the most comfortable mask I have experienced. NO strap marks in the morning, easily adjustable. I hope your success comes quickly, too.
I have had the best luck going to Corner Home Medical here in the Minneapolis. They have a variety of masks to try and skill in getting them adjusted properly. My latest nose mask is the best by far with very comfortable straps and nose piece. I am probably an easy patient to work with. I always sleep on one side or the other with the hose going up over the pillow. I do wake slightly to shift from one side to the other, but go back to sleep promptly. I have used a machine since March of 2005 and have missed 6 nights in that time. 3 were in the Boundary Water Canoe area with no electricity. 2 were after a house fire with all the electronics destroyed and one was due to a power outage. I am a serious user because of all the negative things it was causing for me, including needing a quadruple by-pass due to my clogged arteries from the adrenaline used to make me gasp and start breathing again all night long. That irritates the arteries and your body's response to that is to lay down cholesterol over the irritation. Once I understood how serious apnea is to your physical health in addition to your mental health and abilities, I was determined to succeed. My CPAP machine is a life saver. Currently using an AirSense10 that gives me a score each night that I faithfully record to see how I am doing and to note if an adjustment should be made.
Could you say a little more about what doesn't work for you since you have been trying for so long?
I did adjust to it quickly and now find when I put the mask on and pull the blankets up over my head to keep the light out, I am usually asleep within seconds--like a conditioned response. My good bladder means no night time bathroom disturbances either, so I usually get 7+ hours of uninterrupted sleep a night. Boy does that feel good!
I would wish the same outcomes for you. I have no understanding, though, of the types of problems other users have.
My wife complains about the cold air, too. I usually sleep on my side facing her. My solution it to pull the sheet and blanket up over my head. I have all the air I need coming in through the hose and it keeps her from getting that draft. Plus, she can stay up and read longer because I'm in the dark, too.