Claustrophobia & Anxiety with CPAP

This field of sleep disorders and treatment can be overwhelming. It is our goal to provide you with the knowledge and resources to make it simple.

Using CPAP can bring on feeling of anxiety. Wearing a mask strapped to your head can being about feelings of claustrophobia. This video will teach you how to get over those feeling step by step so that you can get the most out of your CPAP or BiPAP therapy.

I have a video and some text below. I added the text because I think I may have missed some things in the video.

  • Your CPAP mask
  • Your CPAP machine
  • Your Hose/Tubing
  • Possibly a TV or reading material for distraction

Watch a favorite TV program or read a book or magazine. This will keep your mind off of the anxiety and claustrophobia that your CPAP mask and machine cause you.

Take all the straps off of your mask, or position them so that they are out of the way. Remove the tubing that attaches the mask to the CPAP machine. Now take the mask and simply hold it to your face without the straps around your head. When feelings of anxiety arise, simply move the mask away from your face.

Continue this until you are comfortable with the mask being held on your face.

Attach the tubing to the mask and machine. Keep the mask straps off. Turn the machine on and repeat step one with air moving through the mask.
If the anxiety from the mask or the air pressure become too much, remove the mask. Remember that YOU HAVE THE CONTROL. Know that breathing with CPAP is different and feels different. It just takes a little getting used to.

Take off the tubing from the mask to the CPAP machine. Put your straps back on the mask. Take a moment to familiarize yourself with the straps and how to get it off. Most have some type of quick-release strap or clip.

Put the mask on. The straps should be tight enough that it is snug to your face. Not loose or tight…snug. When and if you feel anxiety creep back, remove the mask. Put it back on when you feel comfortable. Continue this until you feel comfortable with the mask strapped to your head.

Now we’re going to keep the mask strapped on and add the tubing from the mask to the machine. Turn on the CPAP machine and breath normally with the mask strapped on. Again, if the anxiety resumes you are now familiar with getting the mask off, so you can remove it quickly.

If you need to remove the mask, do so. Put the mask back on when you feel comfortable.

Once you are comfortable with this, keep the mask on with the CPAP machine on for awhile. Get used to breathing with it now so that when it is time to sleep, you are already comfortable with the mask and air pressure

That was easy. You can do it during any crappy program of your choosing. You know…you were in charge of CPAP the whole time. You just needed to let your mind know that.

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