It’s World Diabetes Day!

Today is World Diabetes Day. It’s an annual event held on the 14th of November that aims to spread the word about the importance of tackling diabetes and recognising it as a critical global health issue.

Why the 14th November? Well, it’s a significant date: the birthday of Sir Frederick Banting who, in 1922, co-discovered insulin along with Charles Best. World Diabetes Day was created in 1991 by the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) and the World Health Organisation (WHO) in response to growing concerns about the escalating health threat posed by diabetes. It has since grown to become a globally celebrated event and an official United Nations (UN) awareness day. It is now the world’s largest diabetes awareness campaign.

November 2019 marks the second year of a two-year theme dedicated to “The Family and Diabetes”. Research conducted by the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) revealed that many parents would struggle to spot the warning signs of diabetes in their own children.

According the NHS1 you, or a family member, should see your GP as soon as possible if you experience the main symptoms of diabetes which can include:

  • feeling very thirsty
  • peeing more frequently than usual, particularly at night
  • feeling very tired
  • weight loss and loss of muscle bulk
  • itching around the penis or vagina, or frequent episodes of thrush
  • cuts or wounds that heal slowly
  • blurred vision

Diabetes and Sleep Apnoea

Diabetes and sleep apnoea are strongly associated with one another. Clinical research shows that as many as 48% of people diagnosed with type 2 diabetes have also been diagnosed with sleep apnoea.2 Even more striking, researchers believe that 86% of obese type 2 diabetic patients suffer from sleep apnoea.3 For more information see our article “Diabetes and Sleep Apnoea

Useful diabetes resources

More Than 936 Million Have Obstructive Sleep Apnoea Worldwide

If you have obstructive sleep apnoea, you’re definitely not alone. According to the latest scientific research1more than 936 million people around the world are affected.

This remarkable figure, which was published in the world’s leading respiratory health journal, is nearly 10 times greater than the World Health Organisation’s 2007 estimate of over 100 million. It’s led to new calls for physicians to step up their efforts to screen, diagnose and prescribe treatment for this manageable disorder.

More than 85 percent of [obstructive] sleep apnoea patients are undiagnosed,” explains Carlos M. Nunez, M.D., a study co-author and ResMed’s chief medical officer. “This raises their risk of workplace and road accidents, and can contribute to other significant health problems, such as hypertension, cardiovascular disease, or even poor glucose control for diabetic patients. We know the risks and now we know the size of the problem. Addressing it starts with screening patients we know to be high-risk.”

Undiagnosed sleep apnoea and risk ResMed blog UK

Why is obstructive sleep apnoea mostly undiagnosed?

With over 85% of obstructive sleep apnoea cases currently undiagnosed, there are millions of people who don’t know they’re affected. They’ll repeatedly stop breathing for 10 seconds or more throughout the night, jerking awake to avoid suffocation before the cycle starts again. The disruptive cycle causes chronic sleep deprivation but most people don’t remember waking up. Instead, they assume they’re tired because they’re stressed or getting older. Or they end up being misdiagnosed with insomnia, migraines, chronic fatigue or other conditions.

Who is at risk for obstructive sleep apnoea?

Obstructive sleep apnoea can affect anyone, including children. Snoring is the number one indicator of sleep apnoea in men and women, though not everyone who snores has it… and not everyone who has it snores.

Other common risk factors include: being overweight, being older than 40 and having a large neck circumference, a family history of sleep apnoea and various other physical characteristics, like nasal polyps. Smoking, drinking alcohol and taking certain sedative medicines increases the risk. More than half of all people with obesity, heart failure, stroke or transient ischemic attack (TIA), atrial fibrillation or type 2 diabetes have sleep apnoea, according to leading research2. And it’s worth noting that women account for 40 percent of newly diagnosed sleep apnoea patients3.

How can I tell if I’m affected?

Common signs of obstructive sleep apnoea include snoring and gasping or choking during sleep, sleepiness, forgetfulness, poor concentration and lack of energy during the day, frequent urination at night, sexual dysfunction, morning headaches, night sweats, weight gain and a depressed mood.

The bottom line is: If you’re constantly tired or have other conditions linked to sleep apnoea, it never hurts to ask your doctor about it,” says Nunez. “Don’t settle for being tired all the time. You may improve your sleep, your mood, your relationships at work and home, your health, perhaps even other medical conditions you’re managing. But first, you have to find out.”

AirFit P30i & N30i CPAP masks earn good design awards!

We’ve had some great news recently: two of our latest CPAP masks, the AirFit™ N30i nasal cradle mask and the AirFit P30i nasal pillows mask, both received Good Design Australia Awards in the Product Design category for achieving the highest level of design and innovation.

Selected from among nearly 700 entries, the nasal AirFit N30i and nasal pillows AirFit P30i are the first ResMed masks with a tube-up connection, allowing wearers to move and sleep in any position. Both masks fit at least 90 percent of wearers with only two frame sizes each.

Overall, this is a robust piece of design that has been perfectly executed,” said the Good Design Awards Jury. “Care and detail were taken in the material selection for comfort and ease of fitment. They’re good examples of the understanding of the user in the context, and a very sophisticated tooling technique for the spring hinge that accommodates different head shapes, and also the soft nose piece.”

The 30 Series masks are just the latest of ResMed’s Good Design winners; in 2017, ResMed earned four awards for its AirFit N20 nasal maskAirFit F20 full face mask, and AirTouch™ F20 full face mask with memory foam cushion, plus AirMini™, the world’s smallest CPAP machine1.

We’re honoured that Good Design Australia has once again chosen ResMed products as the standard for medical device design,” said Mark Buckley, ResMed’s Vice President of sleep product development. “We continue to redefine that standard for the sake of patients’ comfort and overall health, as well as the efficiency of ResMed’s distribution partners. Their continued trust in ResMed is our greatest reward.”

Diabetes and Sleep Apnoea

Diabetes and sleep apnoea are strongly associated with one another.

Clinical research shows that as many as 48% of people diagnosed with type 2 diabetes have also been diagnosed with sleep apnoea.1 Even more striking, researchers believe that 86% of obese type 2 diabetic patients suffer from sleep apnoea.2

What does that mean? Although these statistics don’t necessarily prove that diabetes causes sleep apnoea (or vice versa), it’s clear that there’s a real medical connection here – one which the medical community has been exploring for decades. It also means that if you’ve been diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes, you may want to consider paying close attention to the risk factors of sleep apnoea.

“Based on the current evidence, clinicians need to address the risk of OSA (Obstructive Sleep Apnoea] in patients with type 2 diabetes,” advise the authors of a 2008 study published in the journal Chest, “and, conversely, evaluate the presence of type 2 diabetes in patients with OSA.”3

Diabetes and sleep apnoea: What’s the relationship?

Of course, despite the numerous research articles published on the association between sleep apnoea and diabetes – and there are a lot – researchers still don’t know exactly what causes this connection. And it hasn’t been proven in specific terms whether one condition directly causes the other.

In fact, a 2005 study published in the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine attempted to find out “whether an independent relationship” existed between type 2 diabetes and sleep-disordered breathing.4 Looking for an “independent relationship” means that researchers hoped to discover the secret behind the connection between sleep apnoea and diabetes and why so many people have both conditions.

Unfortunately, that study was inconclusive, and the real source of the connection between sleep apnoea and diabetes remains unknown. Although, combined evidence from population and clinical-based studies suggest there is an independent association between OSA and type 2 diabetes, highlighting the importance of considering each of these two diseases if you have one of them.3

Diabetes and Sleep Apnoea: Awareness and prevention

We can’t say that if you have sleep apnoea, you’ll get diabetes, or vice versa. But with such a large overlap between these two conditions, it’s sensible to suspect that if you do have one of these conditions, your likelihood of developing the other is increased.

That means paying extra close attention to the risk factors for diabetes if you have sleep apnea, and making sure you’re doing all you can to ensure healthy sleep if you happen to be diabetic.

Even health professionals are on the lookout for the connection. The international Diabetes Federation Taskforce on epidemiology and Prevention strongly recommends that health professionals working in both type 2 diabetes and SDB adopt clinical practices to ensure that a patient presenting with one condition is considered for the other.”

How can I tell if I have Obstructive Sleep Apnoea?

Common signs of obstructive sleep apnoea include snoring and gasping or choking during sleep, sleepiness, forgetfulness, poor concentration and lack of energy during the day, frequent urination at night, sexual dysfunction, morning headaches, night sweats, weight gain and a depressed mood. If you’re constantly tired or have other conditions linked to sleep apnoea, it’s always advisable to speak to your GP or healthcare professional.

The facts on stroke and sleep apnoea

Stroke is a cardiovascular disease

It is the brain equivalent of a heart attack. For your brain to function, it needs a constant blood supply bringing oxygen and nutrients to the brain cells. If the blood vessels burst, if they are narrowed by disease or blocked by a blood clot then the blood flow is obstructed and the brain cells don’t receive the required oxygen or nutrients. Without oxygen and nutrients, the brain cells are damaged or die.

Stroke carries a high risk of death, depending on the type of stroke.

A ‘mini stroke’ or Transient ischaemic attack, where symptoms resolve in less than 24 hours, has the best outcome. Survivors of stroke can experience loss of vision and/or speech, paralysis and confusion depending on the part of the brain that is affected, how widespread the damage is and how healthy the person was before the stroke. Having had one stroke significantly increases risk of having another.

People with sleep apnoea experience a number of symptoms that may predispose them to stroke

Like repetitive drops in oxygen levels during the night which places stress on the heart and brain, and an increase in sympathetic nervous system activity leading to the narrowing of blood vessels, increased heart rate and hypertension. Hypopnoeas and apnoeas are known to cause death of brain cells from lack of oxygen5 and hypertension is a major risk factor for stroke. Treating hypertension can reduce the risk of stroke by 40%.1

Stroke has the potential to cause sleep apnoea

Depending on the part of the brain affected by stroke. Some types of stroke affect the control of breathing while other types of stroke can compromise the function of muscles that control the tongue and soft palate.
Since these muscles hold the upper airway open, this loss of muscle function can result in obstructive sleep apnoea.

Stroke patients with untreated sleep apnoea have a significant disadvantage in the struggle to recover from stroke. Daytime sleepiness, fatigue and impaired memory and concentration associated with sleep apnoea, combined with the effects of stroke are likely to make stroke rehabilitation more difficult. Untreated sleep apnoea in stroke patients is associated with higher death rates at one year and poor functional outcomes in survivors.6

Treating sleep apnoea with CPAP will reduce the apnoeas and hypopnoeas associated with the drops in oxygen that can place stress on the heart and brain. It will reduce blood pressure, the main risk factor for stroke, significantly reducing the chances of suffering a stroke7. Treating sleep apnoea has also been shown to reduce the risk of new problems occurring with the blood vessels8 and is known to improve quality of life6 and reduce the stroke mortality rate.9

Obstructive Sleep Apnoea (OSA) and Blood Pressure

Essentially, most medical experts are of the opinion that there is a connection between blood pressure and sleep apnoea. The U.S. National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (a division of the National Institutes of Health) states in it’s definition of sleep apnoea that left untreated it can “increase the risk of high blood pressure,” whist also presenting a greater risk for obesity, stroke and heart attack.1

The Mayo Clinic states high blood pressure as a possible complication of sleep apnoea. They say that “sudden drops in blood oxygen levels that occur during sleep apnoea increase blood pressure and strain the cardiovascular system.” They also warn that “if you have obstructive sleep apnoea, your risk of high blood pressure (hypertension) is greater than if you don’t,” they also go onto link the severity of the sleep apnoea with that of the blood pressure.2

Our own NHS in the UK gives similar warnings about the link between the 2. saying on their web site that “Obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA) is associated with high blood pressure,” and that it’s “uncertain whether people develop hypertension as a direct response to OSA, or whether it is the result of an underlying cause of OSA, such as obesity.”3

Sleep apnoea and blood pressure: The research

The suggestion that high blood pressure and sleep apnoea are regularly found together are supported by a wide variety of medical studies. A study published in American Family Physician in 2002 is typical: “About one half of patients who have essential hypertension (hypertension without a known cause) have obstructive sleep apnoea, and about one half of patients who have obstructive sleep apnoea have essential hypertension.”4

A 2009 study published in the journal Hypertension Research also found that OSA “increases both daytime and night-time ambulatory blood pressures.” That study concluded that understanding the characteristics of a patient’s sleep apnoea “is essentially important” to achieve control over high blood pressure.5

So, what to do with this information? Chances are you may well be aware of the connection, but if not and if you suffer from OSA then be sure to discuss any concerns with your GP. Please discuss any medical advice with your doctor or equipment provider. If you have a specific product question, please contact the ResMed UK team

Are hay-fever or allergies affecting your CPAP use?

Hay fever, otherwise known as seasonal allergic rhinitis, is an allergic reaction to airborne substances such as pollen that get into the upper respiratory passages – the nose, sinus, throat – and also the eyes. It affects around one in four people. Symptoms that may be caused by the allergy are: itching eyes, sneezing, nasal stuffiness, nasal congestion and drainage, and sometimes headaches.

Hay fever usually occurs in spring and summer, when there is more pollen in the air. Trees, grass and plants release pollen as part of their reproductive process. Mould and fungi also release tiny reproductive particles, called spores.

People with hay fever can experience their symptoms at different times of the year, depending on which pollens, spores or dust mite are causing the allergy.

The human body has its own humidification process that protects the respiratory system. Every time a person takes a breath, the nose, pharynx (behind the nasal cavities and mouth) and trachea (in the throat) add moisture to the air so that it does not dry out. As the air passes further into the airway, it becomes warmer and more humid. By the time it reaches the lungs it is at the ideal temperature and humidity. When you exhale, your nose conserves moisture by recovering about a third of the water present in each exhaled breath.

This moisture is then used to humidify the next inhaled breath. With allergies and colds the nasal passages may be blocked causing people to breathe through their mouths and therefore the natural humidification through the nose, which is responsible for two-thirds of humidification, is bypassed. This starts a vicious circle because nasal symptoms trigger mouth breathing and mouth breathing aggravates nasal symptoms.

Heated humidification with CPAP greatly decreases the symptoms of nasal congestion, dry nose and throat. The humidifier replaces moisture in the nasal cavity which has been lost due to mouth breathing.

Sometimes nasal stuffiness due to rhinitis, sinusitis, or allergies can be relieved by prescription nasal sprays or medications. These may make it easier to breathe during CPAP treatment. However, many patients have found that they can discontinue the use of nasal medications either after changing to heated humidification or after adjusting their humidifier to the proper level to relieve the dryness of the nasal and oral cavity.

Minimising exposure to allergens like pollens and dust mite can be useful in controlling allergic symptoms.

Tips for controlling your allergic symptoms:

  • Use hypoallergenic filters with your humidifier
  • Keep windows and doors closed during heavy pollen seasons.
  • Rid your home of indoor plants and other sources of mildew.
  • Change feather pillows, woollen blankets, and woollen clothing to cotton or synthetic materials.
  • Enclose mattress, box springs, and pillows in plastic barrier cloth.
  • Use antihistamine and decongestant as necessary with medical advice.
  • Observe general good health practices; exercise daily, stop smoking, avoid air pollutants, eat a balanced diet, and supplement diet with vitamins, especially vitamin C.

Read more about humidification here

This blog post contains general information about medical conditions and treatments. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. The information is not advice, and should not be treated as such. You must not rely on the information on this website as an alternative to medical advice from your doctor or other professional healthcare provider.

If you have any specific questions about any medical matter, you should consult your doctor or other professional healthcare provider. If you think you may be suffering from any medical condition, you should seek immediate medical attention. You should never delay seeking medical advice, disregard medical advice, or discontinue medical treatment because of information on this website. The views expressed on this blog and website have no relation to those of any academic, hospital, practice, or other institution with which the authors are affiliated and do not directly reflect the views of ResMed or any of its subsidiaries or affiliates.

Obesity and Sleep Apnoea

Obesity is one of the leading preventable causes of death worldwide1 

Obesity is a growing problem, not just for adults in wealthy nations but for adults and children worldwide. 61% of adults in England are overweight or obese.2

In the UK in 2010, one in ten people is being treated for obesity 3,4. In England alone, it is estimated that the cost of treating co-morbidities (significant health problems) related to overweight and obesity is £4.2 billion each year.5

Approximately 40% people who are obese have sleep apnoea, while 77% of people who are morbidly obese have sleep apnoea.6 Overweight and obesity occur when excess fat accumulates in the body, posing a risk to health. The Body Mass Index, or BMI, is used to define weight.

BMI definition Body Mass Index

BMI is the abbreviation for body mass index: a measurement of someone’s weight in relation to their height.

DefinitionBMI range (kg/m2)
UnderweightUnder 18.5
Normal18.5 to less than 25
Overweight25 to less than 30
Obese30 to less than 40
Morbidly obese40 and over

Recently, waist circumference is has been included since fat around the abdomen is especially unhealthy. Abdominal obesity is classified as a waist circumference of more than 88 cm in women and more than 102 cm in men.

Sleep clinicians often measure neck circumference an in indicator of the fatty tissue deposits around the neck. Many studies have shown a correlation between neck size and obstructive sleep apnoea. Women with a neck size of more than 41 cm and men with a neck size of more than 43 cm are more likely to have obstructive sleep apnoea.

There are many serious, chronic health consequences of obesity like heart (cardiovascular) disease, type 2 diabetes and sleep apnoea.

These three consequences are some of the most serious since they are considered to place a person at high or absolute risk of death.7

Obesity is also linked to high blood pressure, raised cholesterol (high levels of fats in the blood that can lead to narrowing and blockages of blood vessels), stroke, cancer, disability, reduced quality of life, and premature death.

Weight gain of as little as 4.5kg (10lbs) increases a person’s risk of heart disease. High blood pressure, the leading risk factor for stroke, is twice as common in obese adults8. Gaining 5 – 8kg (11 – 18lbs) doubles a person’s risk of developing type 2 diabetes8.

While severity of obstructive sleep apnoea can improve with weight loss, most people with untreated sleep apnoea find it difficult to lose weight and studies have shown that insufficient sleep can lead to obesity.9,10

It is generally agreed that, put simply, too many calories and too little exercise lead to putting on weight. Researchers have found that sleep deprivation affects the secretion of hormones like leptin that affect our appetite. This is associated with increased hunger and may lead to overeating. The tiredness and sleepiness caused by sleep apnoea often result in people with untreated sleep apnoea feeling as though they don’t have the energy to exercise to burn off the extra calories. This combination of too many calories and too little exercise can lead to weight gain which can make sleep apnoea more severe and contribute to the development of other serious diseases.

So maintaining a healthy diet, active lifestyle and ensuring good quality sleep by effectively treating sleep apnoea are simple ways of making a staggering improvement to health and quality of life.

Do you have air leaking from your CPAP mask or your mouth?

Why CPAP-mask leak can be a problem.

  • Noise of air escaping from the mask can disturb your sleep and that of your partner.
  • Air escaping from the mask into the eyes can cause irritation, resulting in them becoming bloodshot swollen and dry.
  • The effectiveness of your therapy can be compromised if the leak is excessive, this is because the effective pressure to maintain your open airway will be lost as the air escapes around the mask or out through the mouth. This can cause breakthrough symptoms during the day such as increased tiredness and snoring at night.

Mask leak – Air leaks from the mask when the mask is not correctly fitted.

Insufficient cleaning could cause problems with your mask

  • This may be due to the headgear being adjusted incorrectly i.e. over-tightened or too loose.
  • Also frequent changes of position during the night may cause the mask to shift position and cause leakage.
  • Insufficient cleaning of the cushion of the mask retains facial oils on the cushion and as the pressure rises will cause the mask to lift off the face.
  • The age of the mask can affect its ability to seal well as over time the cushion may wear and the headgear lose its full elasticity.

Solving your mask leak

  • Check that your mask harness is not over-tightened. If this is too tight the air is unable to inflate the thin outer membrane of the mask. The temptation is always to tighten the mask when a leak occurs, however, this can be the cause of the problem.
  • Facial contours can change when we lie down and muscles can relax once we are asleep, so it is always best to adjust the mask while you are in your sleeping position.
  • The inflation of the dual wall of the cushion ensures that the mask remains in contact with the face, maintaining an effective seal as you move during the night.
  • Excessive mask leak and an inability to achieve a good seal is often the first clue that your cushion needs replacing. ResMed masks should last approximately one year if cared for correctly.
  • To get the optimal life from your mask, be sure to wash your face each night before putting on your mask and avoid using face creams just before bedtime. Wipe your cushion each morning with a warm damp flannel to remove any facial oils. At least once a week wash your mask thoroughly, using original washing up liquid and avoid using anything with perfumes, moisturisers, antibacterial agents, bleaches, etc. Rinse with fresh water and always dry your mask and cushion out of direct sunlight and not on a radiator.

Excessive mask leak and an inability to achieve a good seal is often the first clue that your cushion needs replacing.

Air leak from the mouth

  • Caused if nasal problems such as blocked sinuses, colds, allergies, deviated septum prevent adequate ventilation through the nose warranting sporadic or continuous mouth breathing. Patients who have had throat surgery for snoring in the past may also experience mouth breathing due to the changes in the anatomy of that area.
  • Mouth breathing often causes an excessive dry mouth and sore throat.

Problem solving your mask leak from the mouth

  • If you experience mouth breathing a full face mask will certainly work for you and would allow you the option of breathing through your nose and/or mouth.
  • If your mouth is excessively dry in the morning and your throat is frequently sore this is an indication that you are probably breathing through your mouth.
  • Patients who find it difficult to use a full face mask may find some benefit from use of a chin strap which helps to hold the lower jaw to remain closed, but a full face mask is the preferred option.

This blog post contains general information about medical conditions and treatments. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. The information is not advice, and should not be treated as such. You must not rely on the information on this website as an alternative to medical advice from your doctor or other professional healthcare provider.

If you have any specific questions about any medical matter, you should consult your doctor or other professional healthcare provider. If you think you may be suffering from any medical condition, you should seek immediate medical attention. You should never delay seeking medical advice, disregard medical advice, or discontinue medical treatment because of information on this website. The views expressed on this blog and website have no relation to those of any academic, hospital, practice, or other institution with which the authors are affiliated and do not directly reflect the views of ResMed or any of its subsidiaries or affiliates.

Using your CPAP in Winter with Colds & Flu

Winter can be a challenging time for CPAP users. The lack of humidity in the dry cold winter air, combined with use of CPAP therapy can cause the nasal passages to become dry while using CPAP with a cold or flu can only make matters worse.

One of the main functions of the nose is to warm and moisten the air you breathe. If the air is cold tiny blood vessels inside the nostrils dilate to help warm up the air but the extra blood flow causes the airway to narrow and leads to additional mucus production to protect its sensitive tissues and to add more moisture to the inhaled air. Unfortunately, this may cause nasal congestion and a runny nose.

If the air through the mask does feel too cold and your sleep is disrupted there are some simple remedies that can be tried to overcome this:

  • Try closing the windows and heating the bedroom.
  • Also try placing the tubing under the bedclothes as heat from the body will increase the temperature of the air passing through it.

Upper respiratory tract infections, colds and flu

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It’s never easy to sleep when you have an upper respiratory tract infection, a cold or flu, but for people on CPAP therapy, it is more difficult to tolerate treatment at this time.

Stopping using your CPAP when you have a cold is not advised as it can make other cold symptoms such as a sore throat a lot worse. However if you are too uncomfortable or if you experience ear pressure or pain or have any other concerns, contact your GP or medical provider.

Again there are some simple remedies that can be tried to make treatment more comfortable when you do have a cold.

  • Use of a saline nasal spray to add moisture to the sinus passages can relieve swelling and help you breathe easier.
  • Decongestants can help although these can take a while to work so they need to be used early enough so that they take effect by bed time.
  • An ‘over the counter spray’ such as Beconase can be used to decrease inflammation in the nasal passages and help reduce the swelling of the nasal mucosa. This is only recommended for short term use i.e. less than three days. If you are taking any other medicines, including those bought without a prescription and herbal medicines, you should check with your pharmacist before you start treatment with this.

Under no circumstances be tempted to add Olbas oil or similar decongestants to the water in your humidifier and do not put it on the filter of your device as this can damage your equipment

Use a Full-Face mask

quattro-air

Most CPAP masks are nasal masks so require you to breathe only through your nose, but when nasal congestion develops, it becomes difficult to do this. Nasal congestion or resistance as experienced during a cold can lead to you breathing through your mouth. When air from your CPAP device escapes through your mouth (mouth leak) it can be a significant problem that may compromise the effectiveness of your CPAP therapy. Mouth leak causes high airflow in one direction, preventing the lung’s moist air from passing back through the nose which results in drying of the skin in the nose, nasal congestion, and flu-like symptoms upon awakening.

Many people who routinely use nasal masks with their CPAP treatment purchase a Full-Face CPAP mask for use when they have a cold or an upper respiratory tract infection. Use of this type of mask will ensure that if you do revert to breathing through your mouth treatment can still be used and it will continue to be effective.

Add heated humidification

Use of heated humidification with CPAP treatment is recognised as the most effective method of preventing or reversing the symptoms resulting from cold air or an upper respiratory tract infection as the air is warmed and moistened before it reaches the nose. This will help with nasal congestion, ease inflamed nasal passages and make the air more comfortable to breathe. If you are using a ResMed device there will be a humidifier available to fit your CPAP machine.

h5i

Some people using heated humidification can experience a problem known as ‘rainout’ during cold weather when the warmed moistened air coming from the humidifier is cooled by room air as it moves down the tube towards the mask and moisture in the cooler air returns to a liquid.

This can result in droplets of water or condensation to gather in the tube and mask.

There are several ways to lessen the problem of ‘rainout’ and the following may help:-

  • Always have the device and humidifier positioned lower than the bed.
  • Close the bedroom window, turn the humidifier down or raise the temperature in the bedroom at night to lessen the difference between the temperature in the room and the tube.
  • Tuck the tube under the bedclothes to keep it warm.
  • Insulate the hose by covering it with a tubing wrap. Custom made ones can be purchased from ResMed or alternatively you can make your own by wrapping a towel, scarf, bubble wrap or aluminium foil around the tube

You can call ResMed customer service team on 0800 917 7071 or fill the form here. One of our trained and experienced team will be happy to advise you.

This blog post contains general information about medical conditions and treatments. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. The information is not advice, and should not be treated as such. You must not rely on the information on this website as an alternative to medical advice from your doctor or other professional healthcare provider.

If you have any specific questions about any medical matter, you should consult your doctor or other professional healthcare provider. If you think you may be suffering from any medical condition, you should seek immediate medical attention. You should never delay seeking medical advice, disregard medical advice, or discontinue medical treatment because of information on this website. The views expressed on this blog and website have no relation to those of any academic, hospital, practice, or other institution with which the authors are affiliated and do not directly reflect the views of ResMed or any of its subsidiaries or affiliates.