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CPAP Info From Employee Fitting Me For Mask
#1
I just left my Respiratory Med office, and the girl that was fitting me for my new mask gave me some info that I am questioning. I am changing from my full-face mask to a nasal mask, and she told me that I did not need to wear a chin-strap if I did not want to. She recommended that I try it a couple of days without it to see if I am ok without it. She said the ONLY purpose for the chinstrap was to prevent the mouth from drying out, due to the possibility of the mouth opening when/if the jaw muscles relax, thus allowing the mouth to open. I thought that if the mouth opens it will allow the pressurized air from the CPAP machine to short-circuit through the mouth to atmosphere. I thought the CPAP machine relied on a closed system to create positive air pressure in the windpipe, keeping the airway open. Airflow through the mouth can prevent the machine from functioning properly, because the air pressure entering the nose leaves through the mouth before it can reach the windpipe. Am I correct or is the respiratory technician responsible for fitting me with a new mask correct?

Thank You in advance!

Michael
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#2
(12-04-2013, 05:29 PM)mmarch Wrote: Am I correct or is the respiratory technician responsible for fitting me with a new mask correct?

Thank You in advance!

Michael
Hi mmarch welcome to the board
I think both of you is correct and more accurately if combined together

Its essential with nasal mask to keep mouth closed otherwise the therapy is ineffective if therapy air escape through the mouth. Some people manage keep their mouth closed without using chinstrap but for people like me, a chinstrap is a must. But does not matter if using full face, you can breathe through nose or mouth without any compromise to the therapy. Depend on the model of your machine, some machines report leak rate which is helpful to find out whether leak is an issue

btw, you have "ResMed IPX1" listed in your profile, not sure about this machine
ResMed machines have the model name shown next power button
AutoSet and Elite are data capable machines, Escape models are not





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#3
Well, she is wrong in that it is not the only reason for the chin strap. And you are correct in that the CPAP is a "closed system".

If you are not opening your mouth when you sleep, there is no need for a chin strap.
PaulaO2
Apnea Board Moderator
www.ApneaBoard.com


Breathe deeply and count to zen.

INFORMATION ON APNEA BOARD FORUMS OR ON APNEABOARD.COM SHOULD NOT BE CONSIDERED AS MEDICAL ADVICE. ALWAYS SEEK THE ADVICE OF A PHYSICIAN BEFORE SEEKING TREATMENT FOR MEDICAL CONDITIONS, INCLUDING SLEEP APNEA. INFORMATION POSTED ON THE APNEA BOARD WEB SITE AND FORUMS ARE PERSONAL OPINION ONLY AND NOT NECESSARILY A STATEMENT OF FACT.




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#4
I do sleep with my mouth open. My concern is my respiratory professional is telling me "if I do not mind waking up with a dry mouth, then I do not need a chinstrap". Correct me if I am wrong, but I believe that I need the chinstrap to create a closed circuit for the CPAP air. Air escaping out my mouth would make the CPAP therapy ineffective. Does this make sense that she would tell me this. I repeatedly asked her if that was the only purpose of the chinstrap, and she insisted that it was.
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#5
Chin straps are often used for those patients who experience problems associated with mouth-breathing during their CPAP therapy. A chin strap can solve these problems by holding the mouth closed during sleep, and may prevent the patient from having to wear a full face CPAP mask.
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#6
Hi mmarch,
WELCOME! to the forum.!
I echo what has been said so far.
Best of luck to you and hang in there for more responses to your post.
trish6hundred
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#7
Then yes, you need a chin strap. The person you spoke to was misinformed.

When you open your mouth, unless your tongue is in the way, air is going to leak out. CPAP stands for "continuous positive airway pressure". If there is a major leak, you lose the "continuous positive" part and the treatment is basically a weak leaf blower.
PaulaO2
Apnea Board Moderator
www.ApneaBoard.com


Breathe deeply and count to zen.

INFORMATION ON APNEA BOARD FORUMS OR ON APNEABOARD.COM SHOULD NOT BE CONSIDERED AS MEDICAL ADVICE. ALWAYS SEEK THE ADVICE OF A PHYSICIAN BEFORE SEEKING TREATMENT FOR MEDICAL CONDITIONS, INCLUDING SLEEP APNEA. INFORMATION POSTED ON THE APNEA BOARD WEB SITE AND FORUMS ARE PERSONAL OPINION ONLY AND NOT NECESSARILY A STATEMENT OF FACT.




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#8
Thank You all for your information & time. Now I am struggling with whether I should approach management at the respiratory med place that supplies me with my equipment & education. This girl actually told me that they recommend that I try it without the chinstrap for a couple of nights. If I don't mend the dry mouth then there is no need for the chinstrap. I would not want her working for me, but I don't want to take a chance on getting her fired either.
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#9
ask for another respiratory therapist. you don't have to say why you want another one. also, biotene spray helps with dry mouth and ayr helps with a dry nose. hope this helps.
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#10
You are right about the pressure. If not using a full, total or hybrid face mask then you have to use something, usually a chin strap, to keep the mouth closed and maintain continuous positive air pressure in the airway in order to get effective therapy. I have heard of RTs making this claim before (that air escaping mouth is inconsequential) and they are just flat out wrong. It's up to you if you want to complain to management or not about the bad advice. It probably won't make a difference though...

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