My First Week With a CPAP

I’ve officially spent my first week with a CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure therapy)! My first appointment with neurology isn’t until the 31st of August, but once I got my results into my portal, and clarified with my bariatric team I would need my CPAP to get medical clearance to be submitted to insurance, I made the decision to see if my primary care doctor would write my prescription. I sent my lab results over to her, and she did agree to order my CPAP ahead of my appointment.

My sleep study results did show I have a form of apnea. Specifically, it showed I suffer from hypopnea, which means my airway doesn’t fully shut, but it does result in shallow and/or slow breathing. At the end of the day, it has tagged me with a diagnosis of obstructive sleep apnea and that I do need a CPAP for sleep. The one plus is that my oxygenation levels did not dip below 90 during the study, so there was at least one good part.

A week ago I went in on Monday to get my CPAP machine setup and my mask fitted. I was beyond excited to get it. The sleep therapist was also impressed with the knowledge I had. He asked if I was a medical professional of some sort and I had to explain to him the fact that I am not, but that I do a ton of research into things so I can be an advocate for my medical needs.

My doctor ordered the recommended machine for me, an auto-pap with a humidifier (Philips Respironics DreamStation CPAP with Humidifier). I got to choose my mask type and I chose a full face mask, as that is what I used during my sleep study and I found it comfortable (ResMed AirFit F20).

To say I feel rested would be an understatement. I’ve had some of the best sleep I’ve had in about 10 years recently. I don’t feel drowsy by midday, my concentration is better, and my overall energy throughout the day is improved.  I can’t wait to see what 30 days on this will feel like!

My complaints so far? Only a couple. It takes a couple of minutes to get the mask into an okay spot on the bridge of my nose. I am also having some irritation from the silicone. I do have a call into my sleep therapist to see what we can do about both. I am thinking I may have to spring for some mask pads for my super sensitive face skin, but we shall see.

So far I’ve had nothing but a positive experience from the sleep study to starting out using a CPAP. It seems like the only stories you hear are the bad ones, so I wanted to share my experience so far to show it doesn’t have to be all bad.

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