I can't keep my CPAP mask on at night

I have tried several CPAP masks and a couple of different machines over the last few years and I keep having the same problem.


I rip off my mask while sleeping and have no memory of doing so. I have even tried taping the mask and harness (CPAP Headgear) to my face and head, but my sleeping self always rips it off.

I am also a stomach sleeper. I can fall asleep on my side, but I always end up on my stomach after tossing and turning. I have also been known to carry on conversations with people while I'm asleep, with no memory of it afterwards.

Any suggestions?

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Jul 28, 2012
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by: CpapHelpDesk

• Many people experience what you are going through.

• Let me share with you what other patients I know of have done.

• Utilize the “Mask Fit” check feature to figure what leaks you are experiencing.

• Some CPAP machines have “Mask Alert “…. turn it on. It will emit an alarm when the mask is off your face while the unit is running. Hopefully you will hear it and force yourself to put the mask on.

• Go on various CPAP forums and ask the good people there. You are bound to meet some one who does what you are doing.

• Have your doctor interpret your down load from the card. Explain to the doctor what you are going through. Some doctors “may “even prescribe a low dosage medication to help you.

• I know of a few patients over the years that did this.. Purposely wake them up via alarm clock at least once in the middle of the night. Because the knew for a fact the CPAP mask would be off their face when the alarm went off. They would wake up, put their CPAP mask on and very quickly fall back asleep again. I know this sounds extreme but this is what they shared with me. It took a few months and it worked for them.

• The remainder of the people who experience this issue are of the mindset. “Hey a few hours of sleep with the CPAP on is so much better than no sleep at all with the no CPAP to begin with.” They settle with it.

• Sit down quietly and really take an educated guess as to why you might be ripping your mask off in your sleep. Examples …..Is it because you have an auto CPAP and the pressure has increased and is uncomfortable, or the CPAP pressure is uncomfortably leaking into the eyes, or you are still new to using cpap and all you need is more time to get use to it, or mouth is dry, or the CPAP pressure feels uncomfortably high after the ramp time is up, or the mask hurts your face, or like you said sleeping on your stomach..which is hard to do while using a CPAP. Perhaps then you have to prop your self with extra pillows to totally prevent you on laying on your stomach. Try to address each and every issue one by one.

• Get your Sleep physician and the Home Medical equipment company’s advice on it also.

• It took me over 9 months to really started getting used to it. Most of the people I work also take that long. The point I am making is, please please please be patient with yourself and just don’t give up.


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