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Cleaning Your Personal CPAP Equipment During COVID-19

If you have sleep apnea, your CPAP machine is the gateway to a peaceful sleep, that is why ensuring it is in good condition is vital. Cleaning is an important part of keeping your equipment in good condition and for your Sleep Apnea treatment. You must clean our equipment regularly; non-frequent cleaning may cause you to experience the following symptoms:

  1. mask slipping on our face causing repeated awakenings 
  2. high leakage leading us to take the mask off before morning
  3. skin breakdown or breakouts under the mask seal
  4. experiencing cold-like symptoms more frequently

In addition to the common issues related to the infrequent cleaning of CPAP equipment, the importance of cleaning has been reinforced by the emergence of COVID-19. Today we will be discussing the most effective way to clean your CPAP equipment as recommended by our sleep therapist, but first, let’s talk a little bit about your CPAP machine.

Sleep Apnea Machine

Obstructive sleep apnea is commonly treated using CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) therapy. In CPAP therapy, a sleep apnea machine known as a CPAP machine delivers constant and steady air pressure through a hose and mask or nosepiece, allowing you to sleep soundly.

As you're well aware, using a sleep apnea machine has its challenges, but the good news is the CPAP machine now comes with accessories that address common issues patients face while using the machine. Here are some examples:

  • Kego Jack that suctions to the wall enabling your tubing to stay up. Raising the tubing keeps it out of your way, freeing you of inconveniences like tubing hanging in your face, or wrapping around you or your pillow.
  • specially designed CPAP pillow. This pillow is built with a stabilizing band that helps keep your hose away, and cut-outs to place your mask.

It's also a relief to know that if your mask doesn't work for you, there are various mask options you can choose. Also, most CPAP masks are adjustable, enabling you to set them to suit your preference.

CPAP Equipment Cleaning

Cleaning your CPAP machine and equipment is a vital part of your health routine, follow these steps to clean the various components of your CPAP machine properly:

Mask

Daily

  • Wash the part of the mask that touches your face daily using warm water and mild, non-fragrant soap. You can also use unscented baby wipes or CPAP mask wipes.
  • Rinse thoroughly, then place on a clean cloth or paper towel and let it air dry away from direct sunlight.

Headgear

  • Wash as needed using mild laundry detergent, rinse thoroughly, and then allow it to dry.

Note: Never put it in the washing machine or dryer.

Tubing

Weekly

  • Wash in mild soapy water. You can use a tubing brush to clean the inside of the hose.
  • Rinse carefully in running water and air dry it.
  • To dry, hang it up, so it drapes down allowing water to drip out.

Humidifier Chamber

Daily

  • Rinse thoroughly, then set it on a clean cloth or paper towel and allow it to dry. Place it away from direct sunlight.

Weekly

  • Open the chamber and wash it in warm soapy water. However, always check your manual to confirm that your cleaning fluid is safe for the CPAP machine.

Note: Gently, remove the chamber from the humidifier so that water doesn't enter the CPAP machine.

Reusable Filters (or Pollen Filters)

Weekly

  • Rinse these in plain water. Always allow the filters to air dry before replacing them in the machine.
  • Unplug the device and wipe the area that holds the filters using a damp cloth.

Contact the Experts!

Your CPAP machine contributes a lot to your health and wellbeing. Without it, you wouldn't sleep well, resulting in a myriad of issues arising from sleep deprivation. Medigas Respiratory Wellness Center offers professional services and resources concerning sleep disorders and CPAP therapy. Contact us today for any CPAP equipment cleaning or maintenance issues you have. We're here for you!

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