Finding a CPAP mask that fits is important for a number of reasons. If the mask is not comfortable, you may not wear it every night or take it off in the middle of the night. Then your sleep apnea symptoms return, along with all their associated risks. An ill-fitting mask may leak, preventing you from receiving the full benefits of treatment even when you wear it consistently. There are many different options, such as a hybrid sleep apnea mask, and with a little patience and perseverance, you can find one that fits perfectly.
Total Face CPAP Mask Vs. Other Models
In the past, the only type of CPAP mask available was a total mask that covered both the mouth and nose. A total face CPAP mask can offer its own advantages. Covering a greater area of the face helps to create a stronger seal and prevent leaking. It is good for people who breathe through their mouths due to nasal congestion or a similar condition.
However, total face masks are not good for everyone. People with facial hair sometimes find that the uneven surface prevents the mask from getting a good seal. People who sleep on their stomachs or sides find that the total face mask is uncomfortable. People who like to fall asleep watching television find the masks to be obstructive, and people with claustrophobia may not be able to wear them at all.
Fortunately, there are other options available for patients who either cannot wear a total face mask or prefer not to. A nasal mask is smaller and covers only the nose. A nasal pillow mask, such as the ResMed AirFit P10, interfaces directly with the nostrils without covering either the nose or mouth. For people who breathe through their mouths but do not want a total face mask, there is a hybrid mask that covers the mouth but interfaces with the nostrils like a nasal pillow mask rather than covering the nose completely.
Feeling Confident With Wearing Your CPAP Mask Sleeping Next To Your Partner
Some patients are reluctant to start CPAP therapy because of the effects it might have on their relationships with their partners. They fear that the noise of the machine will keep their partners awake, the mask will keep them from being attractive to their partners, or that it will interfere with intimacy.
Few, if any, partners report any sleep disruption from the noise of the CPAP machine. Some find it to be calming, like a white noise machine, and many report that their partners’ snoring and gasping prior to treatment was much more disruptive. At the beginning of treatment, the CPAP can cause some awkwardness for both patient and partner. Nevertheless, couples find creative ways to adapt their routines so that the CPAP does not significantly affect intimacy.
In most cases, partners are happy that the patients are receiving the treatment they need for their medical condition and supportive in helping them use it. Nevertheless, CPAP therapy does require a period of adjustment for partners as well as patients. Partners have become so accustomed to the sound of the patient’s snoring that they may initially wake up alarmed at not hearing it.
With the right mask, CPAP therapy is beneficial for both patients and partners. With a prescription, you can shop for supplies online.