Poor Fit/Loss of Air-Tight Seal
If you have a poor fit of your CPAP mask, or you cannot maintain the seal on your mask, you may have the wrong size CPAP mask. This could be due to weight loss, weight gain, wearing out of the CPAP mask, or a part or all of the mask breaking. Contact your medical supplier and see about trying different fits and different masks. Have them help you to ensure that you have a proper fit with a seal that won't break during the night. You may have to have a different type of mask, especially if you are breaking the seal as you toss and turn at night.
It is typical for new CPAP users to have a period of adjustment. Try sleeping in a different position, or try using a PAPillow which is designed to give you comfort while using a CPAP device. Ensure that you have a proper fit, that you are using the mask the way it is designed and that the tubing is free from being snagged. Allow yourself a period of adjustment so that you can get used to sleeping with your mask. If you cannot get comfortable with your sleep mask, contact your health care provider to see if you can try a different type of mask. Don't give up. You will be able to find a mask that will allow you to sleep in comfort. The most important thing is that you do not stop treatment.
Whether you have gotten a cold or your CPAP device is causing nasal stuffiness or congestion, being congested while using a CPAP can be very uncomfortable. Using a CPAP device with a humidifier, preferably a heated humidifier, will go a long way in relieving nasal congestion. You can also try other things, such as using a saline spray, or if you suspect a cold, using a nasal decongestant. It is important that you do not stop treatment.
Sore or Dry Eyes
If you wake up with sore or dry eyes, your sleep mask is not positioned properly or the headgear is not positioned properly. Reapply your CPAP mask and adjust the headgear to ensure a proper fit. The problem should stop once you have applied the mask and headgear in the correct way.
Many people feel claustrophobic when wearing their CPAP device, especially at first. Consider using some breathing relaxation techniques to calm yourself. Put on the CPAP mask at a time when you are calm and relaxed. If you are still having difficulty using your mask without feeling claustrophobic, speak with your health care provider about ways to deal with claustrophobic feelings while wearing the mask. Sometimes, medication can be prescribed to combat claustrophobia while wearing the CPAP mask.
Dry mouth can occur when users unwittingly sleep with their mouths open. There are several different things you can do to combat dry mouth. You can wear a chin guard. A chin guard will not trap your mouth shut, but it will make it more difficult for your mouth to open involuntarily while you sleep. You can also change your CPAP mask to a full face mask, which covers your nose and mouth. Make sure that if you do switch your mask to a full face mask that you add a humidifier, (preferably a heated humidifier) to your CPAP device. This will help you keep your mouth moist at night.
If the skin around your CPAP mask is getting irritated, it may be one of a few things. First, it could be that your mask is ill-fitting. Check the tension provided by your headgear. Ensure that you have a fit that is snug, but not tight. Secondly, it could be that you have an incorrect mask size. If you have adjusted your headgear and the irritation continues, you need to contact your health care provider and ask for a CPAP mask fitting. Thirdly, you could have a sensitivity or allergy to the material used for the CPAP mask. There are several models of CPAP masks made with skin sensitivities and allergies in mind. You might just need to change the model of your CPAP mask.
Air Flow Too Cold/Hot
If you are uncomfortable with the temperature of the air flow coming in from your CPAP device, there are several things you can do. There are temperature regulators that you can purchase to regulate the air temperature. You can also buy tubing insulation which will keep the air flow from getting too cold as it comes in. Contact your medical supplier about accessories that can be used with your CPAP device to help you control the temperature of the air coming through your CPAP device.
If the solutions presented here do not help you with your issue, or if your issue is not mentioned here, contact your health care provider for help. They can work with you to ensure that your issues are addressed and you are allowed a good night's sleep.