Articles

How to Keep Your CPAP—and Your Lungs—Clean

by Tamara S. Consultant
If you use a CPAP at night, for sleep apnea or other sleeping breathing troubles, it's important to keep your CPAP machine clean. Consistent cleanings not only keep the machine running smoothly, they also ensure that the air the CPAP machine is pressurizing and delivering to your body is free of mold or bacteria. Many CPAP machines include a humidifier to help with dry mouth, nose, and throat that can sometimes accompany CPAP therapy, but the added moisture in the air can breed illness-inducing bacteria throughout the machine. There are cleaning systems you can buy that clean your CPAP for you while you're at school or at work, such as SoClean, but if you are cleaning the machine yourself, there are five main components of the CPAP machine that need to be cleaned, the outer filter, the inner filter, the tube, the mask, and the humidifying chamber.

1. The Outer Filter
 The outer filter is a small, dark, square or rectangle on the outside of your CPAP machine. Once every two weeks, you should mix a gentle dish or hand soap with lukewarm water, gently wipe the filter with a soft cloth, submerge it briefly in the soapy water, then rinse it thoroughly and leave it out to dry.

2. The Inner Filter
 The inner filter is small and white, and located within the machine. This filter is most commonly disposable and needs to be replaced every 30 days, but you should check your user manual to determine if your filter is disposable. If you use a system like SoClean to clean your CPAP machine, make sure you still replace this filter if necessary.

3. The Tube
The tube of your CPAP machine should be cleaned every day, if possible. While it may be time-consuming, it's easy for bacteria to grow in the ridges of the tube if not consistently cleaned. Each morning, mix a gentle dish or hand soap with lukewarm water and pour some of the mixtures through the tube several times. Then rinse the tube until it is free of bubbles and leave it out to dry.
 
4. The Mask
The mask should also be cleaned every day, if possible. Similar to the tube, moisture can linger in cracks and crevices, encouraging the growth of bacteria, and bacteria from your mouth can spread to the mask overnight as you breath. Left for more than a day or two, these bacteria can lead to illness. To clean the mask, use the same soap mixture used to clean the outer filter and the tub. You can wipe it with a cloth, submerge it in the soap mixture, or both, but be sure to rinse it thoroughly and leave it out to dry.

5. The Humidifier

Not all CPAP machines have a humidifying chamber, but if yours does, it needs to be cleaned once a week with the same soap mixture used on the rest of the machine. Because the humidifier is consistently damp, bacteria are more likely to grow there, so it's also recommended that you give it a special cleaning once a month. To disinfect the humidifier, fill it halfway with water, then fill the rest of the way with vinegar. Let the mixture sit for an hour or two, then rinse thoroughly and leave it out to dry.

Following these simple steps can keep you breathing easy—and cleanly!—with your CPAP.


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About Tamara S. Junior   Consultant

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Joined APSense since, February 22nd, 2018, From Fremont, United States.

Created on Jun 2nd 2018 04:47. Viewed 181 times.

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