Chapter 3: Level Up CPAP Mask Comfort

The good news is that if you are reading this, you are mostly looking to increase your comfort, and you are already using a mask, that at least works.
 
It is probably the most important piece of starting therapy: to get the right mask that works for you. It doesn’t hurt though to give a mask a go that is new to the market. Over the past few years there has been development in full face masks, nasal pillows, etc., that are light years ahead of options from 10+ years ago.
 
Questions that will determine the most appropriate type of mask to use are:
 
Do you sleep with your mouth open and/or breathe through your mouth?
Do you have issues that affect breathing through your nose?
Do you have a common sleep position? (Side, back, etc.)
Do you have a CPAP setting > 14cmH2O?
Do you care about how you look in a CPAP mask?
Do you use the bathroom more than 2 times a night?
Do you wear glasses or have facial hair?
Do you experience skin irritation easily?
 
Based on your above answers, it helps determine if there is a more comfortable option out there that you may not have been introduced to.
 
Here’s a scenario, picture the following:
 
Let’s say you enjoy falling asleep reading at night or watching TV before sleeping, but you need your glasses to do so. Currently you’re using a traditional full-face mask, over the mouth and nose, and maybe even a gel cushion resting against your forehead that connects to your upper headgear.
 
You may wish to visit the option of a hybrid full face mask like the DreamWear by Philips or the F30i series by ResMed. Some users also enjoy the advantage with these masks of the tubing connection being on top of the head, rather than on the front of the mask.
 
Here’s another scenario, picture the following:
 
Let’s say you used to enjoy a good mustache but needed to change your ways (shaving it) to get a seal with a traditional nasal CPAP mask.

Maybe you want to unleash your inner Burt Reynolds again. Perhaps a more modern, lower profile DreamWear by Philips nasal mask or nasal pillows may work? Or a ResMed P10 or P30i?
 
Overall, mask fit may be the most important part of CPAP therapy, and if there is anything we wish to get across here, it is the options are plenty. There is a wide variety of masks now that address the multi-faceted needs across CPAP users.
 
Have you ever heard of CPAP mask liners?
 

CPAP mask liners can also increase your experience in several ways:

  • Added surface area: in some cases, users report it decreases the amount of tension required on headgear, therefore increasing comfort.

  • Breathable material provides moisture wicking if you have an overactive humidifier or wake up with sweat.

  • Added surface area: in some cases, users report it decreases the amount of leak previously experienced.

  • A liner between your mask and your face can keep your mask cleaner.

 

Tools to Upgrade Your Mask with CPAP Therapy:

 
Explore New Mask Types – For a preview of the most commonly purchased mask models by type, see below:
 
           Nasal Pillow CPAP Mask Cushions on Amazon
           Nasal CPAP Mask Cushions on Amazon
           Full Face CPAP Mask Cushions on Amazon

 
CPAP Mask Liners – See the benefits above.
 
            CPAP Mask Liners on Amazon
 
Next, we get into headgear.
 
In the past, it was a common occurrence, you would see users tightening and often over-tightening headgear just to create a seal. This led to redness, pressure sores, strap marks and overall discomfort.
 
More than ever, care and attention is placed in manufacturing headgear and the options have improved in a big way, just like the mask options.
 
Here is another scenario, picture the following:
 
Let us say you have been using a Mirage FX nasal mask by ResMed for 15 years. Some may say, well if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. But others may say, well if I can make this setup 30% more comfortable, it is worth a look.
 
This is another one where perhaps a more modern, lower profile DreamWear by Philips nasal mask or nasal pillows or a ResMed P10 or P30i. They come with a minimalistic design of their headgear that can be much more comfortable.
 
However, because we are not in front of each other, and more importantly, we are not your physician, we would never be able to make that decision.
 
Modern masks typically incorporate a more comfortable headgear and frame.
 
Have you heard of CPAP Strap Covers or Neck Pads?
 
Both have an objective to increase comfort. Like that of mask liners, they increase the surface area of CPAP headgear straps, distributing pressure from the straps to a larger area on your head or face with a softer material.
 
Tools to Upgrade Your Headgear with CPAP Therapy:
 
Explore New Mask Types with Modern Headgear – For a preview of the most commonly purchased mask models by type, see below:
 
           Nasal Pillow CPAP Mask Cushions on Amazon
           Nasal CPAP Mask Cushions on Amazon
           Full Face CPAP Mask Cushions on Amazon

 
CPAP Strap Covers – See the benefits above.
 
           CPAP Strap Covers on Amazon
 
CPAP Neck Pads – See the benefits above.
 
           CPAP Neck Pads on Amazon

 

Email us: brady@resplabs.com

Call us: 1 (888) 709-7377

 


Best,

Brady


Brady Nelson RRT
President, resplabs