All You Need to Know About CPAP Masks
CPAP therapy is undoubtedly the best treatment for obstructive sleep apnoea. Choosing which brand and type of CPAP machine to buy probably entailed discussions with your sleep doctor and CPAP machine supplier. Now that you have decided which CPAP machine to buy, you also have to decide which CPAP mask to buy.
Choosing the Right Mask
There are seven general categories of masks available in the market today and they are:
- Full Face Mask Category
- Nasal Mask Category
- Nasal Prong Mask Category
- Nasal Pillow Mask Category
- Oral Mask Category
- Hybrid Mask Category
- Total Face Mask Category
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Nasal Mask includes SleepWeaver Advance, AirFit N10 and TruBlue Gel Nasal CPAP mask with headgear. All these masks are available at CPAP Victoria. Most full face masks and nasal masks have sizing guides that you can refer to in order to determine your size. To decide on what type of mask to use, it is best to call one of CPAPVictoria’s experts to help you make informed decisions. You can also check out this blog post about choosing the right CPAP mask.
Caring for the CPAP Mask
It is best to clean your CPAP mask every morning, after a night’s therapy. It is important to remove the oil left in the mask through skin contact. It is best to use warm water and baby soap or shampoo to clean the mask. Do not use soaps with lotion and antibacterial soap as they will break the mask’s silicone cushion, and coat the mask causing it to lose its seal. Before using the CPAP mask, make sure to clean your face to improve the mask’s seal.
Replacing CPAP Mask
It is recommended to replace the mask cushion every 3 months. After every 5 months, the whole mask system should be replaced. Mask cushions usually deteriorate in about 6 months of regular use as they become too soft to effectively hold a seal. The strap of the headgear also loses its elasticity that you must progressively tighten it more to achieve an efficient seal. When the mask’s seal is compromised, air leaks happen, thereby reducing the efficacy of the CPAP therapy. Replacement parts are available at CPAP Victoria.
Next week, we will talk about chin straps, and discuss CPAP mask options if you breathe through your mouth, or sleep on your side, dry mouth, mask leaks and more.