Helpful Tips About Provent TherapyJuly 18, 2012
by Ronald A. Popper, MD
Having Trouble Acclimating to Provent Therapy?
Here are some helpful tips for successfully using Provent Therapy for Obstructive Sleep Apnea
Prior to applying Provent, make sure all makeup is removed and your face is thoroughly washed so all of your facial oils have been removed. This will assure that the adhesive provides complete occlusion of your nostrils. Provent will not work properly if air can escape around the bandage.
Use a mirror while applying Provent for the best results. Angle the valve in the same direction as your nostril. Pull your upper lip down with your lower lip. Place the valve into one nostril. Gently pat the adhesive around your nostril. The tab should be on the outside of your nose. Repeat the same procedure for the other nostril. When you think you have secured each Provent properly, test for air leakage by gently exhaling through your nostrils and feeling for the escape of air. If there is no air leak, you have properly applied Provent. If air escapes, press down on all sides of the adhesive until no air escapes.
Remember, Provent works by making it harder to exhale through you nose. This is what creates the positive airway pressure required to successfully treat your sleep apnea. It should be harder to exhale through your nose while you are awake. If it is uncomfortable, take a few breaths through your mouth to relieve the pressure you are feeling. Then go back to slowly inhaling and exhaling trough your nose. Do not try to forcibly exhale…you should be able to slowly exhale with minimal extra effort, although you will feel the pressure from the Provent.
Rest assured that if you are able to breath in and out through your nostrils while awake, it is natural for you to do so once you fall asleep, even with the extra effort required while wearing Provent. If you are a mouth breather while awake, you are may also be a mouth breather during sleep and require a chinstrap to keep your mouth closed. If you open your mouth while asleep and using Provent, it will not work, as the positive pressure will simply escape through your mouth.
It may take a few nights of using Provent to acclimate to the pressure sensation. Do not give up after just one night. If you cannot wear it the whole night, take it off and try again the next night. Most patients will acclimate to the increased effort to exhale within 2-3 nights. Some patient may require up to 2 weeks. Each night should become easier, allowing longer wear times until you are finally wearing Provent all night.