Differences between types of CPAP Masks

Nasal CPAP Masks

Nasal CPAP masks are smaller than full face masks and cover the nose. These masks offer minimal contact with the face while still creating a secure seal and stable headgear. Users who experience claustrophobia with full face masks may want to try a nasal mask as they are traditionally less bulky.

Nasal CPAP Masks Are Suitable For:

  1. Users with prescriptions that require a higher pressure setting
  2. Active sleepers
  3. Users with unique facial shapes

Nasal Pillow CPAP Masks

Nasal pillow masks sit underneath the nose and use two soft pillows that sit inside the nostrils to direct airflow. They offer a much more minimal design than traditional full face and nasal masks. Some users, however, do not like the feeling of the cushion sitting inside their nose. This direct airflow may also dry out a user’s nasal passage more quickly than other masks.

Nasal Pillow Masks Are Suitable For:

  1. Users who find full face masks claustrophobic
  2. Users with facial hair
  3. Users who wear glasses and wear their mask while watching TV or reading

Full Face CPAP Masks

Traditional full face masks completely cover the nose and the mouth. Some include a forehead stabilizer that helps improve the cushion seal for active sleepers. The headgear typically provides four points of contact for stability and making adjustments more easily. Some manufacturers have recently redesigned their full face masks to sit underneath the user’s nose. These designs greatly reduce facial contact and eliminate the feelings of claustrophobia some full face users experience.

Full Face Masks Are Suitable For:

  1. Mouth breathers
  2. Users with nasal congestion problems
  3. Users with prescriptions that require a higher pressure setting

Replacement Schedule

1.Replace Your Mask Every 3 Months

If you notice that you are experiencing excessive leaks, the mask probably needs to be replaced. Furthermore, if you are very uncomfortable in your mask, you are encouraged to try a new style or get refitted. Often, improved comfort owing to a new mask design can be the difference between compliance and not using the machine

2.Replace Your Headgear Every 6 months

Over time and use, headgear may become stretched and lose elasticity, leading to over tightening and discomfort.If your headgear has stretched and/or you find that you need to tighten it to achieve an effective seal, it probably needs to be replaced.

3.Replace Your Filters Every 2 Weeks
CPAP filters ensure that the air that is delivered via your machine is clean and free of allergens and irritating particles. With time, they can wear out or become clogged. If the environment is particularly humid or dusty, then the disposable filter won’t last as long. Visual inspection is the key to determining disposable filter life.

4.Replace Your Tubing Every 3 Months

Tubing provides the passage through which the pressurized air travels from your machine to your mouth so that you can breathe easier! With time it can develop small tears, which can result in the patient receiving a lower pressure setting than prescribed.If you notice small tears in the material, particularly between the coils, it’s time to replace.