Best sleep apnea mask
CPAP machinesare not one size fits all, so the best sleep apnea mask depends greatly on the size. Most people found these devices to be uncomfortable –or at least deduce them to be from their appearance-, but in many instances the discomfort is derived from an ill-fitting mask. Compounding the problem is the fact that if a person is a particular size in one mask, that doesn’t mean that they will be the exact same size in another mask. If the mask’s manufacturer instructions are not clear or do not include a section on adjusting the mask, you can go ahead and ask your doctor about it.
The style of the mask also has an influence on how beneficial it can be for a given person. For example, there are full face masks that cover the mouth and nose, as well as straps that stretch across the forehead and cheeks. Understandably, such a mask can certainly make a person feel like a regular Eustache Dauger. However claustrophobic it may be, though, this type of mask would be the best sleep apnea mask for people who toss and turn a lot in bed, and would otherwise be prone to having their mask slip off in the middle of the night. This sort of mask is also useful if your physician has prescribed you a high air pressure setting.
On the other hand, CPAP masks featuring nasal pillows fitting under the nose and straps that don’t cover as much of the face may be more unburdensome and recommended for patients who sleep on their sides or abdomen, or who want to use a pillow or mask interface. Some of these styles of mask are perfect for people who want to wear their glasses while using the mask, as they allow a full field of vision for reading or watching the television.
Another cause of vexation could be an inability to tolerate forced air. If that’s your problem, you can upgrade your mask with a ramp feature, which regulates the mask to start with low pressure, and gradually boosts the pressure as the user falls asleep. The ramp rate may be adjusted by physician.
Failing that, you could opt for a bi-level positive airway pressure (BIPAP) device which has varying pressure contours and supply more pressure when inhaling than when exhaling. Yet another complain is a stuffy and dry nose, which can alternately be caused by a leaky mask, and be fixed with an adjustable heated humidifier attached to the air pressure machine.
Regardless of the size and style of the mask, more often than not it will take the patient a while to get used to it. In those cases, a little breaking in may be required. The best way to do that is wearing the mask during the waking hours with the pressure off. Then you can repeat the experiment with the air pressure on, and then move on to wearing the mask whenever you’re going to sleep, naps included. A CPAP mask will only yield positive results if it’s worn consistently. In that sense, the best sleep apnea mask is the one you have grown accustomed to.
Related Read: What is the best pillow for Sleep apnea?