Individuals have been wearing face masks for more than 18 months now as the coronavirus pandemic causing COVID-19 infections continues to rage around the globe. And some of these people are wearing masks another 8 hours each day.
You or a close friend or relative may have sleep apnea, where you wear a mask every night.
As many as 9% of people suffer from obstructive sleep apnea in the United States, according to MSD Manual. Sleep apnea is a condition where a person’s airway closes off during slumber, cutting off breathing. It’s defined as when breathing ceases for at least 10 seconds at a time. Clearly, having to repeatedly wake up briefly just to catch your breath can be very stressful on a person.
With sleep apnea, people snore, experience sore throats and often awake very briefly periodically to gasp for breath. Left untreated, sleep apnea can lead to diabetes, cardiovascular issues and other medical problems.
Treatment often involves wearing a CPAP mask on the face. Continuous positive airway pressure supplied through a tube to the mask keeps the throat open while the person sleeps.
So, doctors counsel their patients to wear their CPAP masks on a regular basis, for the sake of their health. But what are patients supposed to do if they suffer from eczema and need to wear a mask during periods where they might have flare-ups?
Taking Care of Your CPAP Mask
Chances are that you learned how to take care of your CPAP mask some time ago, back when you were first diagnosed with sleep apnea and underwent a sleep study to determine how strong the air pressure needs to be to keep your airway open.
If you didn’t pay careful attention to the care guidelines for your CPAP equipment, including the mask, you might want to review the manufacturer’s manual.
You will want to remember to clean your CPAP mask often, to avoid irritating your skin. CPAP Supplies reminds sleep apnea patients that a CPAP mask is like a pair of sweaty gym socks as an example of something you use on a regular basis and that needs to be cleaned. Otherwise it can become a source for bacteria that cause acne to grow and proliferate.
Home Sleep Delivered notes that you can use simple soap and water to cleanse your mask. But also wash your face before putting the mask on your face, for best results. Individuals with beards or moustaches who are not getting a good seal on the mask will want to think about trimming their facial hair.
Another factor could be the mask size. If it’s not fitting your face correctly, you could wind up irritated and not getting the proper rest you need. Visit your CPAP supplier for details on mask sizes and options for straps as well as CPAP mask liners.
It’s best to use an aloe-based cleaning gel to produce a gentle seal around the edge of the CPAP mask, so it will fit nicely against your face. A pro tip is to adjust the straps of your mask so it isn’t so tight against the skin but still maintains a good seal with no more air leaks.
Caring for Yourself
People with sleep apnea may experience more stress if they are waking up at night to gasp for breath. And as eczema patients know, it’s very important to avoid stress and to keep yourself health. Being run down as a result of lack of sleep will not help you in avoiding eczema flare-ups.
Getting proper sleep every day is instrumental in staying strong and healthy and able to cope with any eczema symptoms.
You can make a big difference by getting relief for your skin. Soothing skin with specially formulated creams is a popular solution for eczema sufferers around the world.
Another option is to use CPAP mask liners. As Very Well Heath explained, mask liners serve multiple purposes. They can help prevent leaks when air escapes from an ill-fitting mask. That’s a common problem that causes noise and makes it harder for folks to get to sleep. A CPAP liner also can keep your skin from being irritated by the mask.
Getting a Good Night’s Rest When You Have Eczema and Use a CPAP Mask
Aiming to get sufficient rest every night is a goal all patients with eczema should aspire to. The better your sleep, the better your health can be. Remember, if you ever find yourself experiencing discomfort from eczema, relief is just moments away when you apply some of our popular products, such as Eczema Honey Original Skin-Soothing Cream. Sweet dreams!