A few different things can happen to your CPAP mask and equipment if you do not clean them as frequently as you are supposed to.
- Your CPAP mask: Without proper care, your CPAP mask will actually start to break down. The rubber itself can degrade, and the foam padding inside can lose density. This break down occurs due to bacteria dissolving or eating away at the equipment, or from general wear and tear. The added debris often causes friction, an increased acidity level, or an adjusted PH level that the mask is not designed to handle. However, you can easily handle these issues by using CPAP wipes or a soft damp cloth to wipe down the surface of your face mask.
- Your CPAP Equipment: While bacteria, mold, fungi, or viruses that grow inside your facemask, can cause permanent damage to the mask itself, they also get passed into the hose and multiply in your humidifier tank as well. This cascade effect allows the infection to propagate and will eventually affect your wellbeing and even the quality or effectiveness of your sleep therapy.
- You: At the very least, a build-up of facial oil on the rubber areas of your CPAP mask will result in acne. However, rampant growth of bacteria, mold, fungi, and viruses in your CPAP equipment will cause sickness, including various kinds of respiratory diseases, mouth or nose infections, and other illnesses.
Fortunately, you can avoid all of the side-effects of a dirty machine with proper cleaning, and best of all, cleaning your CPAP equipment does not have to be hard. Check out the SoClean, VirtuClean, and Lumin, as well as the CPAP mask wipes, sold on this website.