The CPAP accessories and equipment that come with the machine are consumables and need to be replaced at the right time. According to Mark Roemer Oakland, they deteriorate over time and hence you should replace them at the correct interval for optimal performance. Let’s figure out when you should replace your CPAP supplies:
- Quarterly mask replacement – The CPAP mask is one of the most visible parts of the machine that sits on your face and depending on the design may cover the nose or mouth. Through this mask, the machine facilitates the flow of pressure through your airways so that you can breathe comfortably and sleep peacefully at night. That’s why it’s important to maintain your mask in optimum condition for a comfortable experience.
Replacing the mask at the quarterly interval or once every 3 months is the norm. However, you can figure out when to replace your mask with a few visible signs. If you’re highly uncomfortable and have to adjust your mask too many times for leaks, you should get it replaced or try out a new style.
- Bi-weekly replacement of mask cushions or pillows – Depending on your mask design, it has cushions or nasal pillows that rest against your face and prevent pressurized air from leaking out. However, with time the silicone on the cushions or pillows loses its efficacy. This can lead to several problems including irritation, redness, discomfort, and air leaks. So, it’s advised to replace your nasal cushions or pillows once every two weeks, and if you have full face cushions, you’re better off with a monthly replacement. You can tell if your cushions need to be replaced by looking for color changes and cracks at the edges and by feeling the stiffness.
- Replace chin strap and headgear twice a year – These components secure the mask to your face for the perfect fit to prevent leaks and ensure comfort. But their elastic nature renders them useless after repeated use. If you need to tighten your headgear quite often it should be replaced as quickly as possible. Six months is a good frequency for replacing your headgear.
- Replace filters and tubing – Filters in your CPAP machine keep the air that enters your airways, sanitized, and free from germs. Over time they can trap a great number of particles and allergens and get clogged. That’s why you should get them replaced every two weeks. If you live in a humid or dusty region, you will need more frequent replacements. Look for discoloration and signs of wear for replacing your filters.
The tubing bears the brunt of pressurized air for the most time and can develop tiny tears with time. To avoid lower pressure due to the tubing’s deteriorating condition, you should get it replaced once every 3 months or so.
Mark Roemer Oakland suggests that you also inspect your CPAP machine and get it replaced every 3 to 7 years and take advantage of improved technology.