Transitioning into Continuous Positive Airway Pressure therapy can be challenging. With so many machines, masks, and parts to choose from it is certainly overwhelming when faced with seemingly endless decisions about the direction of your therapy. What about a humidifier? If you’ve found yourself waking with a dry or sore throat after using your CPAP equipment, you may want to consider adding a humidifier to your regimen. There are a few different types of humidifiers. Humidifiers either fit into your existing CPAP machine or can be hooked onto it in succession, adding much needed moisture to your therapy air. Here are a few types to consider:
Passover humidifiers work by directing your therapy air over a basin of room temperature water to allow moisture to be picked up. The humidity setting of this set up cannot be adjusted, it is purely dependent on the climate it is in: if your area is colder, less humidity will make its way in, and if it is a warmer area, more humidity will be present. Because of the non heated nature, many CPAP users find that passover humidifiers work best in warmer, drier areas.
Heated humidifiers add moisture to your therapy by heating up water and allowing it to easily evaporate and integrate itself into your therapy. These settings can be adjusted by changing the level of heat going into your humidifier water. Many of these fit with one or a few specific machines, but there are options for stand alone humidifiers that connect to your machine via tubing and are compatible with a variety of machines. Due to the adjustable nature of heated humidifiers, they are more versatile and work in a wider range of climates.
Of course, the above outline is not an exhaustive resource of CPAP humidifiers, but hopefully you now have a better idea of which type may work better for you. Of course, it is best to speak with your doctor to determine what is best for your individual needs.
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