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Who is compliant with their CPAP and what does that mean?

I am a newbie to this site. In the past three months I have been obessessed about sleep apnea. I am trying to make a decision with the different ways of treatment and in typical fashion am trying to immerse myself in this.

 

For CPAP users, I know that compliance is greater than 4 hours a night. every night. However, I feel that if I am not wearing the mask for the full eight hours it isn't good enough and will damage my health.

 

Does anybody know the answer if I wear it for 4 hours and then don't wear it for 4 hours as I pull it off my face, if I will get the health benefits. I do feel rested.

 

I am getting totally obessed with this OSA and am forgetting to live life. I scheduled an MMA surgery on February 23,2010 but am lookinn for other solutions which include a dental device.

 

 

 

BEst regards

 

JAckie

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Replies to This Discussion

Jackie, my impression, and I may be off base, is that 4 hours is considered compliance from an insurance compliance point of view. I don't know what most docs call compliance. I use mine all night everynight.
Mary Z.
I do believe that you should wear your CPAP 100% of the time when sleeping for full benefits. Wearing it for 4 hours is better than nothing. take baby steps. Insurance requirements and owning your machine should be your first goal. By achieving these you will become 100% compliant. Studies have shown that people in your situation our better off than you might think. If you use your unit everynight you are building muscle memory due to the residual effects of CPAP. Which means that the time after you take off your mask is not the big health risk that you might think. A person that wears their CPAP religiously and then stops for a day or 2 will have some reduction in the original severity (AHI) of their apnea. It generally takes 2-7 days for apnea to return to it's original severity after a cessation in PAP use. I hope this helps. Good luck and welcome to sleepguide.

Rock
Mary is right about compliance being measured that way for insurance purposes.

To get maximum benefit you need to try to work up to using your machine all night while you sleep. I use mine even when napping. If I lay down to rest, I put my mask and turn my machine on since there is the possiblity of falling asleep.

I don't know who is doing your surgery, but be aware that surgery isn't always successful and may even leave the patient worse off. Check the doctor's credentials carefully and see what the ratio is in his success rate.
Jackie, I agree with what the others have said: 4 hours a night is a good start, but at the end of the day, it amounts to an arbitrary cut-off point for where insurance companies will reimburse your equipment supplier for the machine and mask. But have no fear: you will get better at wearing it for longer periods of time. The commitment you're showing toward your treatment will guarantee that.

I'd tread very carefully with respect to the MMA surgery. If I were you, I'd cancel it for the time being until I really gave CPAP a much better shot. MMA surgery is major, major surgery, and the way people judge it a success or not more or less boils down to the same kind of arbitrary line in the sand that is drawn for CPAP "compliance," meaning even if it doesn't reduce your symptoms to a healthy level, the surgery can still be considered a "success."
Thanks Rock for your comment here. I have had my CPAP Resmed for a year and have yet to have a restful sleep. I use it religiously for several weeks and then take a few days off. Nice to know that I may be getting some benefits. Right now the mask is just incredibly loud and I haven't been able to adjust it sufficiently enough but given some feedback at this site I do plan to stay with this process until I've had at least one night's good sleep.

Rock Hinkle said:
I do believe that you should wear your CPAP 100% of the time when sleeping for full benefits. Wearing it for 4 hours is better than nothing. take baby steps. Insurance requirements and owning your machine should be your first goal. By achieving these you will become 100% compliant. Studies have shown that people in your situation our better off than you might think. If you use your unit everynight you are building muscle memory due to the residual effects of CPAP. Which means that the time after you take off your mask is not the big health risk that you might think. A person that wears their CPAP religiously and then stops for a day or 2 will have some reduction in the original severity (AHI) of their apnea. It generally takes 2-7 days for apnea to return to it's original severity after a cessation in PAP use. I hope this helps. Good luck and welcome to sleepguide.

Rock
Christine, not all masks are loud. I tried a Mojo gel mask and took it right off. The vents were placed in such a way that they made a loud noise. I use a mirage quattro FFM and am quite satisfied with the level of noise.
Good luck,
Mary Z.

Christine Myers said:
Thanks . Right now the mask is just incredibly loud and I haven't been able to adjust it sufficiently enough but given some feedback at this site I do plan to stay with this process until I've had at least one night's good sleep.

Rock Hinkle said:
What size mask are you wearing. Sometimes a noise or leak problem can mean that you need to downsize to a smaller mask. Mask fitting is an art. I have found that you can't look at the overall size of a person for mask fitting. You have to examine the size of that persons features. ie: mouth, nose, and even the spacing of said features. I have fitted small mask on the biggest and large on the smallest of people if that is what is needed.
Christine, I totally agree with Rock, despite having a "wide" head, I have a small size Mirage gel mask. It is remarkably quieter than the original one I had, I think the size and number of vent holes contribute to the noise, the more and smaller there are, the quieter I've found. Another aspect is the sound conduction. If the hard parts of my mask come in contact with my mattress which is very firm, it sounds like the air conditioning blowers on an aircraft in my ears %-) but other people in the room say they can barely hear anything. Obstructing the flow from the mask vents, eg: by holding a book close, makes the exhaust seem quite loud to me too. I'd be interested to know if anyone else finds these factors influence the loudness of their mask.
Some masks are louder than others and the pressure also affects how loud it is.

Insurance companies have set an arbitrary four hours per night to judge compliance for their purposes

In the real world, full compliance means that you wear your mask for the entire time that you sleep; this includes naps.

I have been on CPAP going on 15 years and except for the first few weeks and a few times when I fell asleep watching TV, I have been 100% compliant the entire time.
Did you take you a while to acclimate to this process? I realize it was a number of years ago but I'm still working to get some relief. I figured out yesterday my mask problem too much air pressure was coming through. Thank you for your input.

Tim said:
Some masks are louder than others and the pressure also affects how loud it is.

Insurance companies have set an arbitrary four hours per night to judge compliance for their purposes

In the real world, full compliance means that you wear your mask for the entire time that you sleep; this includes naps.

I have been on CPAP going on 15 years and except for the first few weeks and a few times when I fell asleep watching TV, I have been 100% compliant the entire time.
Rock, I am using the smallest mask gel mask. I was playing around with the mask yesterday and this is a small almost rubber like tab that was pushed up against the inside of the tubing. Once I adjusted this, the sound dropped considerably so thank you for your suggestion, I really appreciate the input.

Rock Hinkle said:
What size mask are you wearing. Sometimes a noise or leak problem can mean that you need to downsize to a smaller mask. Mask fitting is an art. I have found that you can't look at the overall size of a person for mask fitting. You have to examine the size of that persons features. ie: mouth, nose, and even the spacing of said features. I have fitted small mask on the biggest and large on the smallest of people if that is what is needed.
No problem Christine. Your post brings up a valid point. Not to long ago I had a pt that for hours had no problem with his CPAP. All of a sudden a very high leak. I adjusted and tightened several times to fix the problem. Finally I decided to rebuild the mask. Sure enough the liner had popped out just enough to make a tiny hole. Taking the mask apart and rebuilding solved the problem. Noise and leak.

Christine Myers said:
Rock, I am using the smallest mask gel mask. I was playing around with the mask yesterday and this is a small almost rubber like tab that was pushed up against the inside of the tubing. Once I adjusted this, the sound dropped considerably so thank you for your suggestion, I really appreciate the input.

Rock Hinkle said:
What size mask are you wearing. Sometimes a noise or leak problem can mean that you need to downsize to a smaller mask. Mask fitting is an art. I have found that you can't look at the overall size of a person for mask fitting. You have to examine the size of that persons features. ie: mouth, nose, and even the spacing of said features. I have fitted small mask on the biggest and large on the smallest of people if that is what is needed.

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