CPAP Travel: Cleaning CPAP While Traveling
Did you know that it is possible to travel light and take proper care of your sleep apnea while continuing to clean your CPAP products when away from home? So which cleaning supplies should you take? Taking care of your CPAP machine in an unusual surrounding may be a pain, but worry no more! Health Sqyre is here to guide you through with some pro tips and other useful info.
BUT…DO I REALLY NEED TO CLEAN IT?
The answer is always YES.
Your CPAP consists of a heat tubing and humidifier. With moisture build-up, these parts are a perfect breeding ground for mold, yeast, or fungus. These growths can result in illnesses, along with other symptoms, such as irritated throat, stuffy nose, coughing, and other eye and skin irritations/infections.
In order to ensure a quality therapy, you mustn’t get lazy about cleaning these parts of the machine! A vacation from home does not mean a vacation for your CPAP therapy. Cleaning your CPAP is also no exception when away from home.
Suggested Ways to Clean When Traveling
CPAP Cleaning Wipes
CPAP cleaning wipes, such as the AG Unscented CPAP Mask Wipes, are a great way to keep your CPAP machines clean on a daily basis with minimum effort.
|Convenient||Many experienced CPAP users say unscented baby wipes get the job done at a cheaper price…|
|No need to rinse and dry your machine.||Does not replace regular cleaning|
|100% pure cotton|
|Fragrance, latex, & alcohol free|
|Gentle on skin|
A 62-count container of these unscented mask wipes retail for around $9.99.
Although these wipes may be the perfect solution for traveling and in between regular cleaning, they do not replace regular cleaning – you must clean your machine properly aside from using these wipes!
Automated, Portable CPAP Cleaner
A portable CPAP cleaner is a quick, easy solution to cleaning your mask, headgear, tubing, and water chamber. (This would be ideal for camping when you’re trying to conserve water.)
|Compact and travel-friendly (SoClean 2 Go: 1.3 lbs; VirtuOx’s VirtuCLEAN: 0.5 lb)||Pricey (Retail price for SoClean 2 Go: $179, VirtuOx’s VirtuCLEAN: $279)|
|Convenient – no need to disassemble to clean||Some users say it leaves an odd smell/taste|
|Does not require water or any chemicals|
|Uses natural, activated oxygen to get rid of 99.9% of the bacteria, viruses, and mold.|
|Uses same sanitizing process as water purification and hospital sanitizing|
|Connects with all types of PAP equipment (CPAP, Bi-PAP, BPAP, and VPAP)|
Although automated CPAP cleaners are quite pricey, it’s an investment considering the time it will save you and all the infections/sickness it will protect you from.
Other Cleaning Methods/Tips
Cheap Alternative & the Good ol’ Ingredients
Mild soap (i.e. baby shampoo) and warm water will get the job done without special CPAP cleaners and wipes.
Also, you can dilute vinegar (i.e. 2:3 ratio of vinegar to water) to disinfect your CPAP supplies.
Baby wipes (alcohol-free, fragrance-free) are a cheap alternative to the CPAP Mask Wipes on the market.
CAUTION with H2O
Using distilled water is always recommended; avoid using tap water as much as possible.
If tap water is all you have, boil it (and of course wait until the water cools before cleaning).
- Make sure to clean your machine at regular intervals of once a week even when traveling?
- Clean your mask cushion too? There can be a nasty build-up of dirt and facial oil which will not allow the cushion to seal properly, therefore affecting your air therapy.
- Wash it thoroughly everyday when you had the flu (or other respiratory illness) until you were better?
- Replace your CPAP supplies at the right time?
When to Replace CPAP Supplies:
|Nasal, nasal pillows masks||2 weeks|
|Air filter||2 weeks|
|Full face masks||1 month|
|Frame system||3 months|
|Head gear||6 months|
|Humidifier water chamber||6 months|
Don’t Forget to…
- Avoid using petroleum jelly, alcohol, aloe, perfumes, or any other cleaning solution to clean your machine. Doing so will not only irritate your lungs and cause you to fall ill, but they also have the potential to corrode your machine!
- Thoroughly air dry each part of the equipment before assembling them together when you wash your machine equipments with water.
Being consistent about cleaning your CPAP even when traveling is a must not only for the longevity of your product but also for your health and the quality of your therapy.
Safe travels and happy cleaning!