Why It’s Necessary to Replace CPAP Supplies After Summer
Now that summer is at its end, it is a good time to replace some of your CPAP supplies and equipment. After the last few months of traveling, dust and pollen, supplies such as tubing, filters, and mask cushions need changing. While replacing your CPAP supplies should adhere to a regular replacement schedule to maximize their effectiveness, it is especially important after the summer months.
Many people travel during the summer months. Depending on where you travel to, there can be a higher level of contaminants in the air, which would make your CPAP tubing and filters dirtier than normal. It is always recommended to clean your supplies on a regular basis, but replacing worn and dirty parts is always an option. You should regularly check the state of your equipment to see if replacement is necessary. If your tubing is worn, frayed and discolored, it should be replaced; remember, everything that comes through the tube is being breathed into your lungs. CPAP tubing should be replaced at regular 6 to 9 month intervals regardless, but it is especially important after the summer months.
During summer, people tend to sweat more, which puts added strain on your CPAP mask cushion. The oils in your skin can break down the cushions on your mask, which makes cleaning even more important. However, even with regular cleaning, the mask cushions can break down, which has an adverse effect on the CPAP mask’s seal. A simple rule of thumb: If you are not getting a proper seal, then you are not getting proper sleep therapy. CPAP mask cushions should be replaced roughly every 3 months. Additionally, CPAP mask headgear should be replaced every 6 months. After prolonged use, the headgear becomes stretched, which also can affect the comfort of your mask as well as the seal it provides.
The filters in your CPAP machine require special attention during the summer months. There is an increase of pollen in the air during summer, which will be caught in your filters. While filters should be replaced on a regular basis, many patients find that they need to replace the filters more often during times when pollen is in the air. It is always a good idea to check your filters on a regular basis to see if they need to be changed. Again, CPAP filters are the primary defense against contaminants being breathed into your body. If the filter is in poor condition, nothing will stop it from getting into your tubing, mask and lungs.
The end of summer is a perfect time to check the status of your CPAP machine and supplies to see if they should be replaced. If anything looks worn, stretched, or dirty even after cleaning, you should replace them immediately to insure continued sleep therapy comfort.