How To Clean A CPAP Machine
CPAP machines are must-haves for anyone with obstructive sleep apnea. These machines are worn over the nose and mouth during sleep. While the CPAP machine is in use, a gentle yet firm jet of oxygen is delivered into your nose. This results in air pressure which holds your airways open and keeps them from collapsing, which will keep you breathing easily through the night. CPAP machines are medical devices and need to be cared for as such. Here are four things every CPAP machine owner needs to do in order to keep their machine functioning and clean.
1. Empty the water in your CPAP machine.
CPAP machines feature a chamber of water that is used to humidify the air which is blown into your nose. This added humidity is necessary to keep your sinuses from drying out. It's likely there will still be water left in the humidifier chamber in the morning. You may be tempted to use this water the next night, but you should always empty it in the morning. Standing water is likely to grow mold, which can make you sick if spores get into your lungs while you're using your machine.
2. Disassemble your CPAP machine.
A cursory wipe down of your CPAP machine isn't enough to keep it clean. In order to thoroughly clean it, you need to be able to get into all its nooks and crannies. Completely disassemble your CPAP machine so you can better clean its parts. If you're not sure how to take your machine apart correctly, consult the manual that came with it. If something is stuck, never force it open without checking the manual first.
3. Soak the hose and mask in a cleaning solution.
The hose and mask should be soaked and disinfected after each use. You can soak these parts in a clean sink, if it's available. If this isn't an option due to a shared bathroom, set aside a clean bucket for this purpose. You can purchase mild cleaning solutions designed specifically to soak these parts. If you don't have such a cleaning solution available, you can use warm soapy water instead. Make sure you rinse your mask and hose thoroughly after soaking them.
4. Wipe the other parts of your CPAP machine.
Some parts of your CPAP machine cannot be submerged in water without ruining the electronics. These should still be cleaned with a damp cloth. CPAP wipes are ideal for this purpose. They can remove dust and bacteria without damaging the machine with harsh chemicals. You can buy CPAP wipes from a supplier that sells equipment specifically designed for use with CPAP machines.