DME/CPAP

Have more questions?

To ask a question that is not found here, please login to the Patient Web Portal and use the "Ask DME/CPAP question" link to submit your request.

To report compliance

To report compliance, please login to the Patient Web Portal and report compliance under the "Health Forms", then "DME/CPAP" section.

Frequently asked questions

When should I start feeling better after beginning to use the CPAP?
I have a mustache or a beard. Which mask is best to use?
What if I still snore on CPAP?
What if I lose or gain weight and my old symptoms reappear?
As I continue to use my CPAP on a regular basis, will my medications need to be adjusted?
If I need to be hospitalized for any reason, should I take my device with me and use it at night?
I travel frequently. Should I use my CPAP when I travel?
My skin seems irritated, even bruised or I have marks on my face.
How can I tell when my mask is worn out?
My mask seems to be leaking.
My mask seems dirty.
It doesn’t seem as though enough air is flowing to me.
My nose and throat are dry, my nose is congested or I have nosebleeds.
My mouth is dry.
My eyes are sore, dry irritated or swollen
My hose fills up with water at night.
I have trouble falling asleep on CPAP or I feel uncomfortable when I first apply the air pressure at night.
I feel gassy and bloated when I wake up in the morning.
It is hard to breathe out against the airflow
My machine does not seem to be working.
I just can’t seem to adjust to using CPAP.


When should I start feeling better after beginning to use the CPAP?
Most patients begin feeling better within the first week, though some people may take a little longer.

I have a mustache or a beard. Which mask is best to use?
Ask your homecare provider which mask will work best for you.

What if I still snore on CPAP?
Snoring while on CPAP should not occur. If it does, contact your doctor. Your pressure level may need to be adjusted.

What if I lose or gain weight or my old symptoms reappear?
You may need to have your CPAP pressure level adjusted. Contact your doctor.

As I continue to use my CPAP on a regular basis, will my medications need to be adjusted?
Please do not alter your medications without consulting your doctor.

If I need to be hospitalized for any reason, should I take my device with me and use it at night?
Yes. Also, if you are having surgery, it is important to tell the surgeon and the anesthetist that you are using CPAP at home. You should also inform the doctor treating you for Sleep Apnea that you are going into the hospital.

I travel frequently. Should I use my CPAP when I travel?
It is important that you use your CPAP every night. Purchasing travel accessories will make it more convenient for you to travel with your CPAP.

My skin seems irritated, even bruised or I have marks on my face.

  • Your mask may be too tight. If your mask has a forehead arm or adjustment feature try readjusting that first. Then, if necessary, readjust the headgear straps.
  • You may have the wrong mask size. Consult your homecare provider for a mask fitting. Nasal pillows or a full face mask may provide a better fit.

How can I tell when my mask is worn out?

  • Because masks are disposable, periodic replacement is needed when the mask shows signs of wear and tear. Inspect you mask for stiffness, cracks or tears.
  • Inspect you mask for stiffness, cracks or tears.

My mask seems to be leaking.
Follow these steps to fix a leak:

  • Check all the connections.
  • If your mask has a forehead arm or adjustment feature, try readjusting that first to correct the leak.
  • If there is no improvement with the above steps, readjust the headgear straps.
  • The mask should be as loose as possible while still creating a seal. A mask that is too tight against the face can cause leaks to occur by creating folds in the material.
  • Try another mask size or type if necessary.

My mask seems dirty.

  • Wash your mask daily.
  • Wash your face nightly before putting on the mask.
  • Avoid using skin lotions before putting on your mask.

It doesn’t seem as though enough air is flowing to me.

  • Check that air from the machine is blowing.
  • Check the air inlet and filter for obstruction or dust buildup.
  • Check the hose for punctures.
  • If you are still having problems, check with your homecare provider or doctor for assistance.

My nose and throat are dry, my nose is congested or I have nosebleeds.

  • Try adding heated humidification. You need to ask your doctor for a prescription. You may change the temperature setting on the humidifier.
  • Try nasal saline spray before bedtime and upon awakening.
  • This condition may improve over time.
  • Consult your doctor if symptoms persist.

My mouth is dry

You may be sleeping with your mouth open. Try a chin strap. If a chin strap is not helpful, a full face mask may be considered or you should consult with your doctor about adding heated humidification.

My eyes are sore, dry irritated or swollen.

  • The mask may be leaking into your eyes. Use the forehead adjuster, if applicable, to reduce leaks. Try pulling the mask away from your face and repositioning it.
  • The mask may be too tight. Readjust headgear straps.

My hose fills up with water at night.

  • Condensation builds up because the air in the room may be cooler than the air coming from the machine. To prevent this condensation from forming, try placing the tubing under the cover to warm it. You may also ask your homecare provider for a hose cover made of fleece.

I have trouble falling asleep on CPAP or I feel uncomfortable when I first apply the air pressure at night.

  • If the ramp feature is available on your CPAP device, use this feature to slowly rise to your prescribed pressure setting.

I feel gassy and bloated when I wake up in the morning.

  • Try sleeping with your head elevated.
  • Try using a chin strap to prevent mouth breathing.
  • This condition may improve over time.

It is hard to breathe out against the airflow.

  • This sensation may improve over time as you adapt to therapy.
  • You may benefit from a comfort feature such as pressure relief technology or from bi-level therapy, which makes it easier to breathe out against pressure.

My machine does not seem to be working.

  • Check the power cord to be sure it is firmly inserted into the back of the machine and the electrical outlet.
  • Contact your homecare provider if you have any problems you are unable to correct.
  • Do NOT attempt to repair the blower unit yourself.

I just can’t seem to adjust to using CPAP.

  • Most people will adjust to CPAP in one or two weeks. Occasionally, it may take a little longer if, for example, you are very sensitive to the feel of the mask on your face or the sound of the device.
  • Call your homecare provider or prescribing physician if you are having problems adjusting to the treatment.
  • Ask your homecare provider or doctor if you are eligible to try Bi-Level or Auto-adjust CPAP, which are available.
  • Attending a patient support group, such as A.W.A.K.E. (Alert ,Well, And, Keeping Energetic), may provide helpful information to improve your CPAP comfort and use. A.W.A.K.E. groups can be found by calling the American Sleep Apnea Association at 1-202-293-3650 or visiting www.sleepapnea.org.