CPAP therapy is the most common method to treat sleep apnea, but it requires several components to work effectively. That may not be an issue when you are in your bed at home. However, it can be a problem if you are constantly traveling for your job. Using these seven tips to stay comfortable while traveling for work helps limit any snags as you head to your destination.
Preemptively taking inventory of your CPAP equipment is essential if you are a constant traveler. Accounting for your equipment ensures your comfort while you’re away from home. Dealing with a malfunctioning device is frustrating, and it’s even worse if you can’t fix or replace what’s broken. Give the machine an attentive eye a week before you depart, leaving yourself ample time to purchase any parts that you need for your travels.
If you plan on flying with your CPAP, it’s wise to contact the airline two days before your flight. Many airlines won’t dock you with bringing an extra carry-on if you have a sleep apnea device, even if you don’t have the medical documentation stating you need it. However, it doesn’t hurt to keep them in the know to avoid any hiccups. Putting your equipment in a see-through plastic bag limits your airport concerns, allowing security to inspect the device without dirtying it.
Pack Smarter, Not Harder
Packing smart doesn’t mean sorting everything in a neat and orderly fashion, although that most certainly helps before going on a trip. Instead, it means packing any accessories that are easily forgettable.
The best strategy is to have a list, and like Saint Nick, it’s a good idea to check it twice to ensure you have everything. As with phone chargers, many are prone to forget their CPAP power cord. Newer machines can adjust to different voltages, so your power cord should work with most outlets. It’s wise to bring an extension cord with you in case the normal cord cannot reach an outlet hotel room’s nearest outlet.
If you’d like to leave your machine at your home base, a mini CPAP travel machine is a worthwhile investment. A CPAP travel machine helps with sleep apnea, and its exceptionally lightweight design makes traveling easier. These travel CPAP machines feature specialized multi-night batteries and extra attachments like travel bags and solar panels to charge the battery throughout the day.
Lastly, don’t forget to empty the water chamber before stowing it away. You could be in for an unpleasant surprise once you open your carry-on if not, considering it will soak all your belongings. Emptying and thoroughly drying the water chamber should be the final item on your checklist.
Ensure the Mask Is Compatible
It’s smart to have your ideal mask in mind before a fitting, but it’s crucial to discuss your sleeping habits with your doctor or CPAP supplier. Doing so allows them to find the best mask for your needs, especially if you tend to sleep in a certain position.
For example, a side sleeper may not need a complete face mask. Plus, wearing a full mask may not be as comfortable when on a plane. Therefore, you should be completely candid about your sleep tendencies and travel plans so that they can prepare you accordingly. These professionals will also ensure that your travel CPAP machine supplies the treatment you need and may make different recommendations based on your travel schedule.
Avoid Too Many Components
If you’re going to travel for an extended period, a travel CPAP machine may not be adequate. Thus, it’s vital to know what accessories you need to bring, what you can leave behind, and what ones you must purchase separately.
If you try to get through your trip with a travel machine, it’s imperative to bring extra batteries. You can’t rely on always having a power supply available, so having batteries on hand is extra insurance. Other than the essentials, having fewer parts is often preferable when it comes to travel medical devices.
Obtaining extra components for your unit is easier when you’re not traveling because you have your supplies close at hand. When traveling, you won’t have access to your additional materials, and you generally don’t want to account for and carry all those components.
Traveling may be exhausting, and facilities might be few and far between, but it’s critical to hydrate. Proper hydration, notably if you’re traveling, will decrease any potential tension headaches. Even if you don’t feel thirsty, your body still needs the nourishment. It’s extremely important to stay hydrated when using a CPAP device.
Suppose you have a dry mouth despite having your mask, a CPAP machine in great operating condition, and an air humidifier. In that case, it might be related to your fluid consumption. Dehydration can develop due to a lack of appropriate water intake, excessive perspiration, or coffee consumption. Rushing to your gate may speed up the dehydration process, particularly if you load up on caffeine to wake yourself up in the morning.
Although some sleep apnea clients dislike drinking a lot of water before bed, CPAP users should rehydrate properly to minimize the dry mouth experience and avoid unpleasant bathroom breaks. A consistently dry mouth isn’t ideal for any CPAP user, and if your problem persists, you should talk to your doctor about alternate choices.
Eat Healthy Snacks
It can be challenging to fall asleep when hungry because your body requires energy to function properly, especially during long travel days. Pack your snacks to maintain a healthy diet and avoid processed foods.
Choose items that are small enough to fit in your pocket or carry-on. Snacks like protein bars, nuts, or trail mix are viable choices. It’s advisable to stock up before heading to the airport so that you don’t pay double what the snacks cost elsewhere.
Get Your Sweat On
After a hard day of traveling or working, getting some cardio in is probably the furthest thing from your mind. Nevertheless, it does wonders for a racing mind and restless body. It can help you minimize stress to relax and fall fast asleep.
Typically, most hotels have a working gym, with some open 24 hours, so there’s no excuse to get your sweat on before you hit the sack. By hydrating and eating clean, you will feel like a million bucks when it’s over.
Following these seven tips to stay comfortable while traveling for work helps CPAP users overcome the challenges of hitting the road. CPAPNation wants to make your life easier when you have to travel, and we have several accessories that can aid you. Please browse our selection and sign up with your e-mail to receive a discount today!