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Helping a Loved One Adjust to CPAP Therapy

As with any medical condition, those who receive Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) therapy rarely succeed or fail completely on their own. By keeping a few simple tips in mind, participants in CPAP therapy and those who love them can work together to ensure long-term success and a healthier, happier future.

It’s no secret that for those with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), CPAP therapy delivers a world of benefits – making it possible to get the good night’s sleep needed not only to improve pulmonary and cardiovascular health, but also to feel better, more energetic and rested. There is; however, another side to the story: too many patients fail in their efforts to stick with CPAP therapy and realize the healthier lifestyle it makes possible.

According to research published in the Journal of Otolaryngology, 34 percent of patients utilizing CPAP do not adhere to the therapy long term. It’s a sobering reality. Too many people who set out to address their OSA fail.

Although every person’s situation is unique, there are several tips that those with OSA and their loved ones can keep in mind to ensure that they not only effectively adjust to CPAP therapy, but stick with it.

Realize that relationships matter

Research published in an online supplement of the journal found that high ratings of relationship quality were associated with stronger adherence to CPAP therapy. The study showed that most people are more successful in their CPAP therapy when they have loved ones who support them in their efforts.

Offer to attend doctor’s appointments

Processing the deluge of information associated with any medical issue can be difficult. If your loved one is comfortable doing so, offer to provide a second set of ears in conversations with their physician about CPAP therapy – including discussions that should include asking for recommendations and tips to ensure long-term success.

Be informed

Knowing that there are solutions to all of the reasons people quit their CPAP therapy will enable you to offer encouragement if your loved one encounters any hurdles or find themselves at a low point. Some of the most common complaints of those who are just getting accustomed to using a CPAP machine include getting use to wearing a mask and suffering from a runny nose or dry mouth – all issues that can be successfully addressed.

Be an advocate

Encourage your loved one to ask questions and seek assistance. Doctors and CPAP experts – including vendors and suppliers – want people to succeed in their therapy and effectively address the dangers associated with OSA. Often, the difference between success and failure in CPAP therapy can be found in the small details and refinements that occur only when patients – and their loved ones – ask for help.

Remember it’s a shared experience

CPAP therapy requires partners and spouses to make adjustments, too. Although a CPAP machine typically enables those with OSA to sleep much quieter than they did previously, it still marks a change for most couples. For some, a temporary shift in sleeping arrangements can be helpful, but regardless it’s important to remember that the change CPAP brings to any sleep environment can be adjusted to with time.

Give the gift of a clean CPAP machine

The moist environment within a CPAP machine, hoses and mask is a breeding ground for bacteria and viruses that cause illnesses and sinus and respiratory infections – a sure way to derail any therapy regimen. Besides being dangerous, using a dirty CPAP is also unpleasant. And unfortunately, there’s no denying that cleaning CPAP machines manually is a hassle – a big hassle that in and of itself is a common reason that patients quit their therapy. Fortunately, SoClean eliminates this factor. With SoClean, cleaning a CPAP is this easy.

Most importantly, remember the benefits of CPAP therapy and remind your loved one of them. For some, adjusting to life with a CPAP machine can be difficult, but the benefits far outweigh any inconveniences and increase as one grows accustomed to the therapy. Reminding your loved one of what they have to gain – restful nights that refresh and all of the health benefits that come with getting better sleep – can be a strong motivator to persevere.*

For more information on how SoClean can make your life easier as a CPAP user, email info@soclean.com or phone (866) 501-3705. We’d love to hear from you.