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Questions about sleep apnea?


Your answers are here.

Welcome to your hub for all things Philips and sleep apnea.

Sleep apnea, therapy devices, services

Obstructive sleep apnea


How many people in the US have sleep apnea?

Five to 10 percent of adults in the United States have Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA). This is approximately 20 million people, and many—the majority—are yet to be diagnosed.


Take our symptoms quiz to find out if you're at risk for sleep apnea.



What is Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA)?

OSA is a condition in which a person stops breathing repeatedly through the night. Breathing stops because the throat or "airway" collapses and prevents air from getting into the lungs. Sleep patterns are disrupted, resulting in excessive sleepiness or fatigue during the day.


Learn more about Obstructive Sleep Apnea>


What causes the airway to close during sleep?

Extra tissue in the back of the airway, such as large tonsils, decrease in the tone of the muscles that hold the airway open, the tongue falling back and closing off the airway.


What should you do if you suspect you may have Obstructive Sleep Apnea?

Evaluation by a doctor specializing in sleep disorders is recommended. Have a sleep study done. A sleep study can provide the doctor with information about how you sleep and breathe. This information will help the doctor to determine your diagnosis and treatment options.


What are potential consequences of untreated OSA?

There is possible increased risk for:

 - High blood pressure

 - Heart disease and heart attack

 - Stroke

 - Fatigue-related motor vehicle and work accidents

 - Decreased quality of life


What is the treatment for Obstructive Sleep Apnea?

Most commonly, positive airway pressure (PAP) therapy is the treatment of choice for OSA. It is noninvasive and can alleviate the symptoms of OSA when used as prescribed. Less commonly, surgery or oral appliances are used, which may be effective in certain cases. Any treatment plan should include weight loss if needed, exercise, and avoidance of alcohol, sedatives, and hypnotics.


Read more about therapy options >


How does PAP or "CPAP" therapy work?

CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) treats OSA by providing a gentle flow of positive-pressure air through a facial mask to keep the airway open during sleep. As a result:

 - Breathing becomes regular during sleep

 - Snoring stops

 - Restful sleep is restored

 - Quality of life is improved

 - Risk for high blood pressure, heart disease, heart attack, stroke, and motor vehicle and work accidents is reduced


Learn more about treatment devices >


What are the night time symptoms of OSA?

 - Loud or disruptive snoring

 - Witnessed pauses in breathing

 - Choking or gasping for air during sleep

 - Restless sleep

 - Frequent visits to the bathroom


What are the day time symptoms of OSA?

 - Early morning headaches

 - Excessive daytime fatigue

 - Poor concentration

 - Depression or irritability

 - Falling asleep during routine activities


What can put you at increased risk for OSA?

 - Overweight/Obesity

 - A large neck or tongue

 - Extra tissue or crowding in the airway


What are the benefits of regular usage of PAP therapy?

 - Most PAP users who remain committed to treatment enjoy:

 - Increased energy and attentiveness

 - Fewer morning headaches

 - Reduced irritability

 - Improved memory

 - Increased ability to exercise

 - Lower blood pressure

 - Decreased risk of strokes and heart attacks

 - Increased effectiveness at home and at work

 - Improved overall quality of life




What does an apnea episode look like?
Device therapy tips


When should I start feeling better after beginning to use my CPAP?

Most people begin to feel better within the first week of use, though for some people it may take a little longer.


What if I still snore while using my CPAP?

Snoring while on CPAP should not occur. If it does, contact your doctor. Your pressure level might need to be adjusted.


What if I lose or gain weight over the course of my treatment or my old symptoms reappear?

You may need to have your CPAP pressure level adjusted. Contact your doctor.



If I need to be hospitalized for any reason, should I take my device with me and use it at night?

Yes. Also, if you are having surgery, it is important to tell the surgeon and the anesthesiologist that you are using CPAP at home. You should also inform the doctor treating you for sleep apnea that you are going into the hospital.


I just can’t seem to adjust to my CPAP therapy. What should I do?

Most people will adjust to CPAP in one to two weeks. Occasionally, it may take a little longer if, for example, you are very sensitive to the feel of the mask on your face or the sound of the device. Call your homecare provider or your prescribing physician if you continue to have problems beyond two weeks. Ask if you are eligible to try a bi-level or auto-adjusting device.


What is the purpose of using a humidifier with a therapy device?

Humidifiers are designed to moisturize the air that is being delivered to you from the therapy device. There are two types of humidifiers—heated and unheated. Heated humidifiers do not “heat the air” but will increase the moisture content of the air delivered. Humidifiers can help to reduce some of the side-effects of therapy, such as dry nose.


What is the role of tubing used with a therapy device?

The tubing is used to carry the air from the therapy device to the mask. You should clean and inspect your tubing at least once a week to make sure it is clean, pliable, and free of tears. If you think your tubing is ready for replacement, contact your homecare provider.


What is the role of filters used with a therapy device?

Therapy devices come with filters. Some devices come with one regular filter and others come with two—one regular filter and one ultra-fine filter. Consult your device manual for proper maintenance of your filters.


Can I take my CPAP through airport security?

CPAP and BiPAPs are allowed through TSA security checkpoints once they have been screened. You will be required to remove device from its carrying case. Mask and tubing may remain in the carrying case. To know if your device can be used aboard aircraft, the bottom of your device will have a note stating that it is medical equipment and will have a picture of an airplane with a circle around it. If your device does not have this picture, you will not be permitted to use it on-board the aircraft. Please note that your medical device does not count towards your carry on. It is not recommended that you that you check your medical device through checked baggage as the carrying case is not designed to protect the device. It is always recommended that you bring a copy of your prescription with you in the event there are questions.


Read more about traveling with CPAP >

System One sleep therapy tips



My hose fills up with water at night. What should I do?

Condensation builds up because the air in the room may be cooler than the air coming from the machine. To prevent this condensation from forming, try placing the tubing under the covers to warm it. You may also ask your homecare provider for a hose cover.


What should I do if I have a hard time breathing out against the constant air flow? This sensation may improve over time as you adapt to positive airway pressure therapy. Ask your physician about comfort features, such as pressure relief technology or bi-level therapy, which makes it easier to breathe out against pressure.


What if my tubing gets in the way while I am sleeping?

You can adjust the way your tubing is laying on your bed by placing it under the edge of your pillow where you will not lay on it and block the airflow. You can position the tubing up over the top of the headboard—or through the headboard if it has holes. If you have the Nuance or Wisp mask, there is a loop on the headgear that allows the tubing to be placed in an upward position instead of pointing down.


How do I manage CPAP tubing during the night?



It doesn’t seem as though enough air is flowing to me. What should I do?

Check that the air from the therapy device is blowing. Then, check the air inlet and filter for obstruction or dust build-up. Inspect the hose for punctures. If you are still having problems, check with your homecare provider or doctor for assistance.


My machine doesn’t seem to be working. What should I do?

Check the power cord to be sure that it is firmly inserted into the back of the machine and the electrical outlet. If this is not the problem, contact your homecare provider. Do not attempt to repair the blower on your own.



What is a System One CPAP therapy device?

Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) devices deliver a steady, gentle flow of air throughout the night and are very effective treatment for sleep apnea. Your doctor prescribes one therapy pressure to open your airway, which is what your device is set to deliver throughout the night. Devices are equipped with various features that can help make therapy more comfortable.


Learn more about our System One CPAP >


What is a System One bi-level therapy device?

Bi-level therapy devices are set to deliver two levels of pressure during the night—a lower pressure when you breathe out (exhalation) and a higher level of pressure when you breathe in (inhalation). These devices are sometimes prescribed for patients who have trouble tolerating one constant pressure from a CPAP device. Most are equipped with various features that can help make therapy more comfortable.


Learn more about our System One bi-level device >


What if I wake up with a dry nose after using System One CPAP therapy


What is the ramp feature in System One devices?

This gives you the opportunity to fall asleep on a low pressure. You can choose the period of time over which the pressure gradually increases until you reach your prescribed level of pressure.



What is A flex technology in System One devices?

Unique technology which softens the pressure transition from inhalation to exhalation to improve comfort. A-Flex technology makes breathing more natural compared to a standard PAP (Positive Airway Pressure) therapy device.


What is C flex technology in System One devices?

Technology that helps to reduce the amount of pressure when you exhale making your exhalation more comfortable in comparison to a standard PAP device.



What is Bi flex technology in System One devices?

Comfort Technology makes both inhalation and exhalation more comfortable compare to a standard bi-level therapy device.


How do I set up my System One PAP device for use?

Place the machine on a hard level surface close to where you sleep. Plug the machine into a standard, electrical outlet.

 - Check the air inlet filter to ensure it is in place and free of dust.

 - If using a humidifier, add distilled water to the water chamber not inserted into the device, then use according to the manufacturer's instructions.

 - Connect one end of the tubing (hose) to the airflow outlet on the machine and the other end to the mask (or valve). Turn the machine on, place the headgear over your head and the mask on your face. Verify that air is flowing continuously to the mask.

 - If the mask has been properly fitted under PAP pressure, you may not need to adjust it further. Air should not leak between your face and the mask. A small amount of air, however, will leak out from the mask where the exhalation ports are located and is considered to be normal. There should only be minimal pressure of the mask on the face. Adjusting the mask too tightly is not only uncomfortable, but can cause leaks.


How do I clean my System One CPAP device?

To clean your device, be sure to:

 - Unplug the device.

 - Wipe the outside of the device with a cloth slightly dampened with water and a mild detergent.

 - Let the device dry completely before plugging in the power cord.


Learn more how to care for your device >


What do I need to do to power my System One CPAP device while traveling internationally?

When traveling internationally, you will not need a transformer or voltage converter for your Philips Respironics System One PAP device because it has an international power supply that adjusts to different voltages. You will more than likely have to purchase a plug adapter. Many countries have more than one configuration so there is often more than one adapter required. Electricity conversion charts are available on the internet to identify what adapter will be needed for the country that you are traveling to.



Can I use my System One CPAP device on an airplane?

If you want to use your PAP device on the airplane, advance notification is required by the airlines. The airplane in-seat electrical power is available on a limited number of aircrafts so you will need to check with your airline and they will let you know of any requirements and restrictions that apply. If a power supply is available, you’ll have the ability to power your PAP machine on board the plane. The airline will let you know what type of power outlet is available in flight and you will be able to purchase the needed adapters if required.

Note: The most common type of power outlet on airplanes these days is called EmPower. You can buy an EmPower-to-12V adapter, and then hook your PAP machine up using the Philips Shielded DC Cord PN 1097568 for 60 series and PN 1001956 for 50 series and earlier.


Read more about traveling with CPAP >



How do I travel with my System One CPAP device?


How do I set up the heated tube on my System One sleep therapy device?


How do I set up the resistance control of setting on my Sleeping One sleep therapy device.


How do I set up the ramp feature on my System One sleep therapy device?

Mask therapy tips

Mask therapy tips


How can I tell when my mask is worn out?

Because masks are disposable, periodic replacement is needed when the mask shows signs of wear and tear. Inspect your mask for stiffness, cracks, or tears. Also check with your homecare provider regarding replacement options through your insurance policy.


My eyes are sore, dry, irritated or swollen. What should I do?

The mask may be leaking into your eyes. Try pulling the mask away from your face and repositioning it. The mask may be too tight so try readjusting your headgear straps.


My skin seems to be irritated, even bruised, or I have marks on my face. What should I do?

Your mask may be too tight. If your mask has a forehead arm or adjustment feature, try readjusting that first. Then, if necessary, readjust the headgear straps. You may have the wrong mask size. Consult your homecare provider for a mask fitting. Nasal pillows or a full-face mask may provide a better fit.


My nose and throat are dry; my nose is congested; or, I have nosebleeds. What should I do?

This condition may improve over time. Consult your doctor for a prescription for humidification. Consult with a doctor to see if a nasal spray would be advisable. Consult your doctor if the condition persists.


My mouth is dry. What should I do?

You may be sleeping with your mouth open. Try a chin strap. If a chin strap is not helpful, a full-face mask may be considered or you should consult with your doctor about adding heated humidification.


I feel gassy and bloated when I wake up in the morning. What should I do?

Try sleeping with your head elevated or try using a chin strap to prevent mouth breathing. This condition may improve over time.


My mask seems to be leaking. What should I do?

Check all the connections. If your mask has a forehead arm or adjustment feature, try readjusting that first to correct the leak. If there is no improvement with the above steps, readjust the headgear straps. The mask should be as loose as possible while still creating a seal. A mask that is too tight against the face can cause leaks to occur by creating folds in the material. Talk to the homecare provider about trying another mask size or type if necessary.


My mask seems dirty. How can I clean it?

Cleaning your mask every day is a very important part of mask maintenance. Here are three easy steps to keep your mask clean:

  - The mask should be disassembled per the Instructions for Use. Wash the mask components in warm water with mild soap and air dry. Avoid soap with moisturizers. Do not use bleach, alcohol, or cleaning solutions containing alcohol.

 - Wash your face thoroughly before using your mask. Avoid using skin lotions before putting on your mask.

 - Inspect your mask. Replace the mask if the cushion becomes hardened or if any parts become damaged.


What is the role of a mask used with a therapy device?

Masks are used to deliver the air from the therapy device to you. A comfortable mask is a key factor in being able to use your treatment daily. Therefore, finding a mask that fits your and your lifestyle is important. Most masks have built-in exhalation ports that vent your exhaled air. Talk to your homecare provider about the different masks and headgear that are available.


What is the role of a chin strap when used with a mask?

Chin straps are optional accessories that can be used with a variety of nasal and nasal pillows masks. They wrap around the top of your head and underneath your chin to prevent your mouth from opening at night.


Read more about device accessories >


How do you know when you should replace your mask?

Replacing your equipment is an important part of being successful with your sleep therapy. There are several factors you need to watch for related to replacing your mask:

  - seal deterioration in the mask,

 - an improperly fitting mask, and

 - a mask damaged by improper cleaning.


Learn more about equipment replacement >


What cleaners should I not use when cleaning my mask?

Avoid soap with conditioners or moisturizers. Do not use bleach, alcohol, or cleaning solutions containing alcohol.


How should I clean my mask headgear?

The headgear does not need to be removed for daily cleaning. However it should be washed weekly or as needed. It can be washed by hand in warm soapy water. Lay it flat or line dry. Do not place it in the dryer.


Learn more how to care for your device >


What should I do if my mask is causing skin irritation?

Your mask may be too tight. If your mask has a forehead arm or adjustment feature, try changing that first. Then, if necessary, readjust the headgear straps. Excessive tightening of your headgear may cause unnecessary discomfort and leaks. Remember, not all leaks have to be corrected so your mask does not have to be completely air-tight.


What if I feel claustrophobic when wearing my mask?

Try wearing your mask around your home during the evening as you go about your normal activities. This may help you to become more comfortable with the mask. If you continue to feel claustrophobic, your respiratory therapist can help you to find a mask that is more comfortable for you.


What should I do when my mask is pulling on my mustache or beard?


What do I do if my nostrils hurt after using therapy


What do I do if I have marks or irritation after using my mask?


What if I wake up and find I have removed my mask while sleeping?


How can I alleviate nasal congestion while using a humidifier with a CPAP device?


How can I alleviate nasal congestion with a CPAP device?


What if I experience a wet nose while using my System One CPAP device?


What if I feel gassy or bloated after using CPAP therapy?


How do I fix marks or irritation on my top lip after using therapy?


How do I fix strap marks on my face after using therapy?

Amara mask tips


How do I fit the Amara mask on my face?


How do I clean the Amara mask?


How do I fix Amara mask leaks?

Nuance mask tips


How do I fit the Nuance mask on my face?


How do I clean the Nuance mask?


How do I fix Nuance mask leaks?

Wisp mask tips


How do I fit the Wisp mask on my face?


How do I clean the Wisp mask?


How do I fix Wisp mask leaks?