As the guy that invented the DreamPort, I'll share a little about me and my CPAP experience. I've been in the field of Sleep Medicine since 1995 and am a Registered Polysomnographer (Sleep Technician), owned sleep labs, sold equipment hosted physician lunches, and now manufacturing of a novel and unique CPAP solution called the DreamPort. I have, more importantly, been a CPAP patient myself for 20 plus years; it's not always been pleasant. But necessary. There is not really any mask I haven't worn on my own face to see what the experience was like and slept with it or tried to sleep with it (in some cases a mask just can't be your friend). That's okay, as not every one mask is for everyone. I started CPAP not because I had sleep apnea at the time, but because I was scared into it. I had worked with an older patient one night who was about my size and build (You can read my Blog Post on this for more details) and he qualified for an emergency SPLIT during the first hour of the night. Meaning I put CPAP on him very soon, because it was an incredibly dangerous place where his sleep took him. O2 Sats in the 50s. He didn't like it. With CPAP on, he couldn't get back to sleep for a couple hours. Most of the night, really, was spent awake, staring at the ceiling. It happens. But during that evening, he did achieve some sleep and he was stabilized. Altogether, maybe 90 minutes or so on CPAP. He didn't realize it though; swore up and down he never slept. That's normal for a lot of patients. He rejected CPAP that day and never attempted therapy. Sometime later he had a massive a stroke. That got my attention. I had just convinced my dad to be tested probably the year before and he turned out positive and wears CPAP today. However, my mom had a stroke in 1984. After seeing all these things come together, (the perfect storm, if you will), I realized I didn't want that for myself. So I started on CPAP the month I learned about the older patient's stroke. I didn't want that to be me. It was a struggle getting to sleep. It would take hours to make it happen. Leaks, hurting nose, tugging straps; masks back then were not nearly as forgiving. But I made it over the hurdle. I got used to it is what I'm saying. The marks on my face from irritating straps, countless leaks, fragmented sleep from those same leaks, nasal discomfort (I had always worn Nasal Pillows, so ulcerations in the nares were not uncommon) were always part of my CPAP journey. I created DreamPort out of a dream one night at the beach. Proof of concept worked right out of the gate. I knew I was on to something. DreamPort could fix a lot of pain points I had experienced for a decade of PAP use and seen other patients struggle and complain about themselves. That said, it's been a long journey to get to this point, but here we are. Will it be for everyone? No, it won't be; no one mask is. Will it be for you? Only time will tell. What DreamPort accomplishes is this: it offers the end user something that can conform to fit them right out of the box. That speaks to comfort. It wraps your skin and meets your shape, contours, divots, impressions and angles. Nothing goes in the nose like a nasal pillow (something I hated because of irritation and ulceration), wrapping the bottom of the nostrils without actually going inside the nares. It has a significantly larger opening than any nasal pillow mask on the market, providing more laminar flow, making it easier to breathe on like a nasal mask. It won't leave marks on your face, rip your hair out, break your hair, cause strap marks or bags under your eyes because it has ZERO headgear. In a lot of cases, it has brought CPAP pressures down for nasal mask & nasal pillow mask users, as well as full face users that have switched to it. Because it doesn't leak (meaning you need less pressure than before, in many cases), it keeps your APAP algorithms in check (algorithms in APAP units can over-titrate patients based on leak rate; it happens all the time, particularly when the Min and Max settings are set wide open from 5-20, which is becoming common place). We know DreamPort fixes more than 20 pain points in the industry. I'm hoping to see that list grow. There are so many stories out there to be shared. I get umpteen emails and phone calls a day telling me how DreamPort has changed their lives for the better, created reasons to stay on therapy or resume it after having quit. I'm hoping this forum becomes a place that people can share that experience, provide tips for what works for them and be a support mechanism for others who need help, while relishing in the success of others. I'm in this with you...so let's change the world together. Stuart
I started CPAP therapy Jan 2018. I was familiar with sleep apnea and CPAP because my husband had been a PAPer for about 10 years. I had no difficulty adjusting to the machine/airflow, but to a mask was a whole different story...that part was not good at all! I was fortunate enough to find a good DME on the second try (just the initial phone call was enough to steer me away from the first!). Over the initial 30 days, they spent a great deal of time with me, fitting me with multiple masks, over 10+ visits, until I basically gave up and settled for the one that was least objectionable. Over the next 13 months, I bought various masks, on my own, hoping to find something that actually worked well. During that time, from reading apnea bulletin boards, I stumbled upon information about the Bleep. It seemed like the perfect answer for me! It would solve most of the problems I was having. Although CPAP had virtually eliminated nocturia, I still had MULTIPLE arousals during the night because the headgear constantly slipped up the back of my head, causing the mask to shift on my no se and leak badly. This would wake me and necessitate fixing the mask. I also developed strap acne. I had strap marks on my face in the mornings for hours. But worst of all was that because of the mask leaking and exhaust into my eyes, I developed such severe dry eye that I could no longer drive, I had difficulty reading, knitting, watching TV, using the computer, ordinary daily activities! My quality of life suffered significantly. My husband chafed under the necessity of becoming my chauffeur. I looked forward to trying the Bleep. I even tried, unsucessfully, to become a Beta tester! I was very disappointed when the launch date was delayed. I pre-ordered as soon as was possible and was actually out of the country when I was notified that the company I pre-ordered from could not fulfill the order. I quickly found another company to order from and when I arrived home, my Bleep was waiting for me. I was so excited to try it out! I was even more excited to find that it actually did fulfill my expectations! The Bleep is virtually leak-free. The few occasions that I do have leakage are generally due to short periods of mouth breathing. (If you do not seat the interface correctly onto the ports, you can hear the air leaking so you can reseat them correctly, so I don't count that as a leak.) Along with treatment, my eyes have improved. No headgear means no straps slipping and no mask coming off my nose. The Bleep stays put all night. No more arousals fixing the mask. Of course, with no straps across my face, my strap acne cleared up and the I have no strap marks for hours. Since starting with the Bleep 15 months ago, I have not purchased any other masks, Bleep all the way! Is it perfect? No, but close. I did have some trouble figuring out how to manage the hose...most of the masks I'd used routed up and the Bleep routes down. But I've solved that problem with Stuart's help (he's a great resource, BTW!). I use a filter hack for the exhaust and that works great, now it's silent. At home, I don't have any issues putting on the ports, I have easy access to my mirror. While traveling (remember doing that?), sometimes it can be a bit of a challenge. I can't do that part without a close up mirror (VERY nearsighted). Overall though, I am thrilled with the Bleep and SO glad that Stuart came up with this for us!
Booksfan - thank you for sharing your story on using the DreamPort. Always a fan of your involvement on CpapTalk and ApneaBoard!
Last night was my first night with DreamPort... Wow! what a difference! The DreamPorts were super easy to put on. Got it right the first time. No leaks. Very comfortable. So light and I can sleep in any position. I set my machine to Pillows and reduced max pressure by 2. Had an excellent sleep all night, and the Oscar numbers confirmed it! O2 sats were good all night. I've tried full face, nasal, nasal pillows. They work, but... the water balloons under the eyes, the smooshed nose, sore nose, the rashes, the leaks were just too much. I may still have to use a total face mask if I have a lot of congestion (like allergies totally stopping my nose), but that's not very often. I know it's only 1 night, but it was a total and overwhelming success! Glad I found you DreamPort!
Pam - Great to hear! Thank you for sharing your story. Did you need any help finding an insurance supplier?
I chose to not use insurance for my APAP and supplies. I self-pay and self-manage.
I am completely new to using CPAP as of two weeks ago, I have central sleep apnea. I did some research prior to receiving my machine and decided that dreamports were worth looking into. I switched from a nose only mask to this system after 4 very uncomfortable and pointless nights. I had no problem applying the dreamports, and yes, hooking up the hose was a bit tricky at first (it still is, but I'm dealing with it). I do believe I'm going to stick with this system, it is very appealing and seems to be the least intrusive for my sleep habits, which are side sleeping and usually rotating from one side to the other during the night. I'm dealing with dry mouth but making some adjustments based on CPAPtalk suggestions this week, that sound reasonable and should help. I taped my mouth last night and do feel that did help. I just contacted Aeroflow based on this forum to see if I can get set up for long-term use through insurance, I'm on medicaid. I very much look forward to trying the new Eclipse when its ready, as that looks like an even better solution to the current issues that are mostly centered around hose attachment and longevity. Just wanted to share this as my condition with Central Sleep Apnea has probably wrecked my life up to this point, without me knowing it could be SA. I had one amazing night with the dream ports two days ago and felt like a completely different person than at anytime in my life. Hopefully that success might continue for me.
Hi there! I understand how bad sleep apnea can be. Because not getting enough sleep ruins our mood for the entire day. One of my colleagues has been in a similar situation, and he would feel sleepy and tired during work hours. Also led to severe headaches. So he consulted a medical professional and found that he had sleep apnea. His doctor recommended using the CPAP machines (https://www.cpapoutlet.ca/machines). Though it may take time, it is a non-surgical method. So he chooses CPAP therapy. It's been quite a few months since he has been following the treatment, and he could experience the change. He is feeling better now. He had trouble using it for the first time, but now he is used to it. Hope you too will recover from it as soon as possible.