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Can silicone be refreshed?
#1
I have a Quattro Air FFM that I have been using for almost two months. As time has passed the seals on the mask have gotten less effective. I have to tighten the mask more to get it to seal properly. Are there any materials that can be used to refresh the silicone seal and restore the original pliabililty or is the answer to just replace the cushion more often?

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#2
Replace the cushion. Anything you might apply is likely to irritate your skin.
The mask cushions do lose their spring -- and a leaky mask is a pain.
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#3
Try boiling in water with Bakeing soda for ten mins that should get you a few more mths use
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#4
Have you tried a mask liner
I can see pad a cheek got a mask liner for Quattro Air
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#5
Hi carlquib,
WELCOME! to the forum.!
When I wash my mask, hose and humidifier chamber once a week in mild, warm, soapy water, I lightly rub my cushion, mask frame and the hose end that connects with the maskwith a soft rag and that makes them tacky so they will stay with your face better but of course, YMMV.
Hope this helps you and best of luck to you with your CPAP therapy.
trish6hundred
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#6
Silly question? **HOW** are you washing your mask? Please tell us in detail? What soap (if any) cold, warm, or hot water, any other chemicals or fluids used?

A few notes. The soap used is actually very critical to the life of the mask (seal), if the soap is not simple/plain it may have stuff in it that will damage the mask/seals. Do not use antibacterial soap, or anything with any type of lotion in it (like Dove, etc). I used to use plair yellow Dial soap til I learned that was bad, no I use a simple dish soap called "JOY". Rather than baking soda and boiling, I prefer half hot tap water and vinegar, and let soak for 30 minutes.

Perhaps it is due to how many years I've been using masks, but I can easily get a year (or longer) from a mask. Food for thought?
*I* am not a DOCTOR or any type of Health Care Professional.  My thoughts/suggestions/ideas are strictly only my opinions.

"Only two defining forces have ever offered to die for you. Jesus Christ and the American Soldier. One died for your Soul, the other for your Freedom."
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#7
Thanks for all the suggestions. I wash my stuff with hot water and plain dawn dish soap daily, although I did use CitrusII CPAP mask wipes a few time when I was in a hurry or traveling. They are supposed to be alcohol and solvent free. Don't know if that shortened the life of the sealing surface. What kind of life span can one expect from a seal like the Quattro Air if washed with just soap and hot water on a daily basis? I don't think I could get anything close to a year, but that may be due to my skin. I will try the rubbing first and see if that helps if not I will progress to some of the other methods presented. I have nothing to lose since it isn't sealing well now.

I haven't tried a mask liner but am going to try in the near future. I am still a fairly light sleeper and leaks tend to bother me. Do the mask liners help with facial hair tolerance? I really hate shaving twice a day!
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#8
(10-31-2013, 12:56 AM)carlquib Wrote: I haven't tried a mask liner but am going to try in the near future. I am still a fairly light sleeper and leaks tend to bother me. Do the mask liners help with facial hair tolerance? I really hate shaving twice a day!

I have had a terrible time with leaks. I tried liners (several brands), but none were worth a darn.

I cannot address the facial hair issue, as I have practically none. Not because I shave a lot, I just never produce much. At best I can grow a pathetic mustache, and that's about all.

The only thing I have found that works to keep the leaks down to an acceptable level (<24 L) is a custom chin strap on top of a nasal mask (Wisp) underneath. The chin strap helps hold the mask in place as I dance around in the bed while asleep.
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#9
Not sure if this will help any, but Medicare replaces cushions once a month. I thought that was excessive myself at first, but what did I know. I began this journey last January. I suffered through many trials of various types of cushions and masks which I always had to clamp down on my head so hard they hurt. Hence, I couldn't use any and always passed on to the next. Then the light bulb went off after I read a medicare form that was on the counter at the office. Medicare replaces once a month, ideally. The person has to go in and get the replacement, of course, it's not handed out. Pillow replacements are 2 per month, groups of six for three months at a time. I got ticked once I realized all the trials were for naught because the cushions were ok looking, but much older than one month. How can you have a decent trial with a cushion that "looks ok." That's what my DME rep said when I asked her about the trail cushions. In other words, during trials, old cushions are used. Straps need to be tightened like heck and hopefully a seal is reached, but not often. The medicare process is prolonged and aggravated my old cushions. It took me months and many trip to the DME to figure this out. I also made an extreme pest of myself to the point I hate to even call them now. I have tmj syndrome, jaw pain. How could I ever get a decent mask trialing old worn out cushions? I ended up with the ones I have now, thank God, after an exhaustive search. My ff mask is light and therefore I'm able to live with it. Please realize for some hairbrained reason the cushions are designed to quickly become obsolete. I haven't figured out how yet. I think it's because of their flimsy designs. Sure enough, now I mostly use the pillows, and yes, when the seal begins to not seal too well I pop in a replacement and then I'm back in the saddle. Sorry for the length of this, but hopefully it will save some of you a world of suffering and trying to figure out what's going on. Love, DJ
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#10
Once you get a spare set or two, experiment. Get spares as soon as your insurance will allow until you have two or more spares.

Quite a few people have reported success with boiling, but I'd only suggest it on spare parts.

Some have even reported success with baking the silicone parts in an oven.
Get the free SleepyHead software here.
Useful links.
Click here for information on the main alternative to CPAP.
If it's midnight and a DME tells you it's dark outside, go and check it yourself.
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