One of the most crucial ways to keep and maintain your CPAP equipment is by cleaning the machines. Keeping your machines clean is essential in avoiding contamination and germs in the headgear. Keeping this equipment clean also prolongs the life of the equipment and keeps everything working well.
Luckily, cleaning CPAP equipment is really easy. You don’t need to clean the machine itself on a daily basis. However, the cloth part, the plastic, and the silicon part of the machine that come into contact with your face need daily and weekly cleaning.
Dish Soap to Clean CPAP Equipment
Most masks are made out of synthetic products, rubber, and silicon, hence you should check the manufacturers’ recommendation on the cleaning soap. Hypoallergenic, mild soap or dishwashing detergents are suggested for use. However, antibacterial soap is advised against. Perfumes and allergens found in some soaps can cause irritation on the skin
This is why an unscented hypoallergenic and mild soap is recommended for cleaning your CPAP equipment. Use gentle soap, warm water, and the washing action is enough to remove debris, germs, and dirt.
Cleaning the CPAP Headgear
The CPAP headgear includes the chinstrap (not on all machines), tubing, straps, and the CPAP mask. Cleaning the gear by hand and letting it out to air dry is the most effective way of cleaning your equipment. The headgear can be washed on a daily basis although most people prefer to do it weekly. If you have oily hair and skin, you can opt to wash your headgear daily using warm water and mild soap.
Cleaning the CPAP Mask and Hose
The CPAP mask is in contact with your face and this could cause a build-up of oils and dirt from your face. Because of this, your mask has to be cleaned regularly as the dirt and oils can cause skin reactions and irritation. Washing your mask daily will rid you of this problem.
Most CPAP users prefer to wash their masks during the day and leave them to air dry so they are good to go during the night when they need to be used.
It is not necessary to wash the rest of the gear every day as it does not collect oils and dirt from the face, however, you should wash them once a week. The headgear should be hand-washed and air-dried. Your soap of choice should be determined by the material of your mask.CPAP nasal pillows, just like CPAP masks should also be cleaned regularly.
Antibacterial Soap For CPAP Tube
Germs in the CPAP tubing can make you sick. Accumulation of these germs can cause infections in the nasal and respiratory systems because remember, you are breathing directly into the tube. Dirt and oil build-up in the tube can also prevent the equipment from functioning properly.
To properly clean your carrying cases and CPAP machine, you need to use a damp cloth to wipe them down. For the machine, once a week is enough. The carrying case is only used when on transit and should be cleaned like you clean your luggage.
Cleaning the CPAP Humidifier
The humidifier is one of the most important parts of the CPAP equipment to keep clean. The build-up of bacteria in the humidifier can be quick because of the water. Water in the humidifier should be changed and the humidifier washed using warm soapy water daily, when in dusty environments.
One should use water and vinegar weekly to disinfect the water tank. Once you’ve cleaned the water tank with warm soapy water, rinse it thoroughly with clean water and fill with one part vinegar to 3-5 parts water. Allow it to sit for about 0 minutes, then rinse it out again and allow it to air-dry. You can place it on the top rack of your dishwasher or in your dish rack.
Cleaning the CPAP Filter
The filter at the back of the machine needs a weekly wash with clean tap water. The way to do that is to hold it under running water and squeeze.
This is enough to remove any dirt that may have accumulated. To remove excess moisture, you can blot it with a clean towel and then leave it to air dry.
Once most of the moisture is gone, you can put it back on the machine. You should replace your filter at least once a year.
Cleaning your CPAP equipment is such a simple task, yet so crucial to your health and to the basic condition of the equipment. Accumulation of dirt and debris is harmful to both you and your machine thus maintaining a routine cleaning habit is very important.
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