There’s no question that starting to use a CPAP machine for the first time can be very overwhelming. And many first time CPAP users often give up on their device or take a long time to adjust to it. As underrated as this may sound, many CPAP users underestimate the value of having a support team on their side. It is easy to think that something like a CPAP machine will be simple and easy to use, however many people quickly realize that a CPAP machine is actually more complex than it may seem.
Using the CPAP machine itself is new and different. You will have to get used to sleeping with a mask worn across your face every night, something that you will likely have never experienced before. It’s easy to just give up on the machine right away when you get frustrated. Then this leads to your sleep apnea symptoms getting worse, and giving you a not so great quality of life.
Aside from all this, having a support team helps with the little things related to your CPAP machine, such as the cleaning process, recommendations of the best parts for your machine and questions about things like insurance for your CPAP machine.
So who exactly might be involved in your support team?
- Close family and friends: these are the people who are with you every day and will likely be the first that you turn to in a time of need. While they may not be CPAP users, they may be your face of encouragement when the machine gets you down
- Other patients who use a CPAP machine: as great as your family and friends will be, they are not the ones using the CPAP machine. By reaching out to other people who are in your position, it is helpful to know that you are not alone in this journey and they will understand what you are going through and may be able to offer some advice or support. There are many online forums dedicated to CPAP patients, or there may be a support group in your area
- A medical professional that you trust: this is incredibly important as they make the medical decisions that affect your lifestyle and you need to be able to be involved, and speak up when there is an issue
This is why connecting with other CPAP users and medical professionals can be helpful so that you have reassurance that you are not alone in all of this. Your doctor will know of any support groups in your area or ways to connect with other people who use a CPAP machine. Also, don’t be afraid to look right in front of you to your own friends and family members who want the best for you.