CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) is one of the best medical devices which facilitates sleeping. It is very helpful for people suffering from obstructive sleep apnea. The apparatus consists of a plastic mask, which is attached to the CPAP machine that blows air through the hose pipe to the mask at a particular pressure. This improves breathing. The patient can sleep with the mask the entire night. CPAP machine is more comfortable if used with a humidifier.
Did you know?According to the Children's Hospital Colorado, only distilled water should be used in the CPAP machine humidifier.
Like any other device, this machine also has some side effects. One of the most common among them is nasal congestion, which is caused due to the dry air of CPAP machine. Hence, CPAP is more comfortable if you use a heated humidifier with it. This humidifier consists of water which keeps the air humid and in turn, keeps the nasal passage and mouth moist. You can set the humidity and temperature according to your preference and local climate. The water used in the humidifier should be distilled water. There are many reason why only distilled water should be used in the CPAP machines. Some of the most commons reasons are stated in the following paragraphs.
Almost all the CPAP machine manufacturing companies recommend the use of distilled water. However, some companies give a nod to using tap water also. In the distillation process, the water vapors which are collected are in the purest form as they leave all the impurities and other harmful substances. This water is collected, cooled down, and then packed in bottles. So, if distilled water is used in the humidifiers, there are no chances of any pollutants, chemicals, bacteria, etc., entering the body. Following are some of the reasons why distilled water is best for CPAP humidifier.
▶ Reduces the Risk of Infections
CPAP, when used with distilled water, reduces the risk of getting exposed to various harmful substances. At the time of distillation, the water is heated at a high temperature, which kills all the bacteria and other microorganisms. It also removes breathing pollutants and minerals which may cause irritation and infections.
▶ Saves the Equipment
As distilled water does not contain any impurities like minerals, lime, bacteria, and other pollutants, it does not harm the equipment and saves it from being corroded. Whereas tap water may result in mineralization of the water chamber. Distilled water is packed with complete precaution so that not a single metal residue is left behind. Hence, you can trust distilled water completely.
▶ Easy Maintenance
It is advisable to clean and empty the water chamber to avoid any kind of deposition. In case you forget to change distilled water for a day, there are less chances of the equipment getting spoiled. To be on a safer side, change the water daily even if it is distilled water.
▶ Safest Option while Traveling
While traveling you cannot trust tap water. Home tap water may have worked for you, but it is not safe to trust the tap water of an unknown place. It may expose you to undesirable and unknown microbes and infections. Hence, under such circumstances, distilled water is the best option.
Do not add anything in the water like perfume, cologne, water softener, etc., as it will add impurities and expose your lungs to various chemicals. Wash the water chamber properly so that there is no soap residue left behind. Change the water daily before going to sleep. Keep these few things in mind to get sound sleep, along with healthy breathing.