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The Best Mask For New CPAP Patients

Starting To Use CPAP

After you have completed your doctor visits, and the big day is finally here, deciding on the best mask to wear along with your CPAP machine is probably the next big question for any new sleep apnea patient.  And along with all the other decisions you’ve made so far, this is also a very big one.  When the face mask fits properly, it is going to mean that the CPAP therapy is working best, and you are going to have much better sleep.  On the other hand, if you are not happy with the CPAP mask, there is a much better chance that you will stop using the therapy, and everything might be for nothing.

Nasal Pillow Masks

According to the different manufacturers of headgear that patients use with their CPAP devices, the nasal pillows are by far the most popular.  The main reason is that people feel they are less invasive, and do not disturb normal sleeping as much compared to the other options that exist.  This is often true in terms of overall comfort, but there is one potential problem that is often not figured out until it is too late.

For a new patient, CPAP therapy is going to seem strange at first.  Air is being blown into your mouth or nose (with nasal pillows).  Furthermore, when a patient is trying to exhale, there is added pressure to expel the previous breath of air because the machine is constantly blowing more air into your body.  So with this happening, nasal pillows are very different than some other options.  Specifically, if you compare a nasal pillow mask to a full face mask, or even a partial face mask, the ability to exhale is often much easier with non nasal pillow masks.  And this is significant.

Exhaling with Full Face CPAP Masks

Now, assume it is your first full night with your new CPAP machine and you are wearing a full face mask.  Resmed manufactures one that is called the Mirage Quattro and it is very popular.  For a new CPAP user, the difference in exhaling is going to be substantially easier with this type of mask, especially during the first few nights when you are getting used to this new therapy.  By having more than just your nostrils to exhale through, and by also not having to blow out through the exact same area as where the air is being blown into, an exhalation is physically easier.  Because the early days of CPAP therapy are the most important, it is no wonder that more patients do better with full face masks compared to nasal pillows during their early days.

One Response to “The Best Mask For New CPAP Patients”

  1. sleep apnea masks says:

    i would recommend trying several just to understand your comfort level


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