Don't take a break from your CPAP
Continuous Positive Airway Pressure machines, commonly known as CPAPs, are a real game changer for those suffering from sleep apnea, in which breathing involuntarily stops and starts. CPAP users see a marked improvement in their quality of life since the machine delivers air pressure through a mask which keeps your upper airway passages open. While the machine is life-changing, it can also be a burden if you are on vacation or otherwise away from your home. Taking your CPAP with you on trips might seem like a hassle, but in order to maintain your sleep health, do not take a break from your CPAP. Below are a list of some risks you take when skipping CPAP therapy.
Your CPAP keeps your breathing passages open, allowing you to enjoy sleep without the interruption of snoring and/or apnea episodes, which can cause you to wake up throughout the night. Additionally, every episode of apnea deprives the brain and the body of oxygen. If you forego your CPAP therapy, you may find that you wake up unrefreshed in the morning, not having enjoyed a restful night's sleep. This can mean a day of dragging and fatigue.
Regular use of the CPAP keeps your airways open and reduces swelling, so if you skip using the machine while you sleep, you miss out on this benefit. Swelling can return, causing you discomfort throughout the day.
Apnea patients who leave the hospital and do not comply with their CPAP treatments are twice as likely to be readmitted to the hospital with heart problems within 30 days.
How to Travel With Your CPAP
When preparing for travel, make sure to include plans for transporting your CPAP, as you'll want to maximize your enjoyment of your vacation or your productivity if you are traveling for work. For flying, so long as you bring along a prescription, your CPAP will not count as one of your allotted carry on items. If your flight is overnight, notify the airline that you need to use your CPAP. If you are traveling internationally, make sure you obtain the proper power adapter. The TSA is very familiar with CPAPs, and will work with you to keep your machine safe. Camping in the great outdoors with your CPAP is also possible, provided you bring a battery to power you CPAP through the night. At home devices and travel CPAPs both have battery power options in most cases.
CPAPs can seem like a hassle since not everyone has to deal with them, but when you consider the improvement to your health and quality of life, bringing along your CPAP will soon be a benefit and not a burden. Remember how helpful your CPAP really is, and you'll be glad you took the extra time to ensure you never skip a night.