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Can't find a mask. Totally frustrated!
#1
I am a newbie with my first time post. I have been using the machine since January, and do not know what way to turn anymore. My first DME never returned my calls, so I returned all gear after 2 weeks and went to another DME. The only way they tried to fit me for a mask was to put it on me and then ask how that feels? After 7 weeks they wanted to start charging me for masks. I then returned my gear and went to a third DME. It's been over 3 weeks and they haven't let me know if they are even getting me a new machine.

My son gave me his 2011 Phillips Respironics System One, and I have been using this since I returned my Resmed S9 and PR DreamStation to the DME's. Although I have been able to keep my AHI under 5.00 I  actually feel more tired than when I was not on the Cpap machine. My biggest problem is I have not found one mask that I have had success with. I am a mouth breather so I have tried F10, F20, Quattro full face masks, as well as Wisp, Gels and about four other nasal masks. Seems I wake up around 12:00 to 1:00 AM for a bathroom break and when I turn the machine back on it does the most leakage. I only average about 4 hours of actual machine usage and the rest of the time I am laying there awake. The biggest problem is the fluttering from the silicone. Can anyone relate to this and if so, any suggestions. I am not a quitter and do not want to give up due to no DME's wanting to help.

   
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#2
Welcome to the forum. Getting the right mask and then getting it properly adjusted is a challenge. I use the AirFit F20 and seldom have leaks. That, may, however, not be the best for you. Proper fit is also important. Most full face masks come in 3 sizes, small, medium, and large. Go to the link below for the mask primer. It has a lot of good guidance. Also try wearing you mask while awake reading or watching TV to get accustomed to it.
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#3
Look at some of the suppliers they have a mask exchange prgram. As far as still being tired it might takes months to really start to see effects. Each of us is different.
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#4
Thank you for your response, Melman. I also have tried the Airfit F20 but Medicare only pays for one in 6 months and they request you change it every month. Living on Social Security it unfortunately is not in the budget. Thank you for the link. I will check it out.
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#5
(06-02-2018, 09:14 AM)michael9346 Wrote: I also have tried the Airfit F20 but Medicare only pays for one in 6 months and they request you change it every month. Living on Social Security it unfortunately is not in the budget. Thank you for the link. I will check it out.

The F20 has three parts: headgear, mask, and the cushion (the part with the silicone).  The "mask" is the part the headgear attaches to and the cushion fits inside of.  It is the cushion that touches and seals against your face.  Medicare pays for a new cushion every month.  (That's what they do for my wife, who uses the Airtouch F20, which has the same design as the AirFit F20.)  It's the cushion that needs to be replaced most often.
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#6
Thank you GuyScharf. I will probably have to go to an appeal board with Medicare to get them to pay anything. They are not approving another machine as yet probably because I returned two machines without checking with them. I have used the Airfit F20 and it leaks as well. I believe when I return from the bathroom the foam mask insert has absorbed oils from my skin and is the cause of the leaks. I use mask wipes but I feel they do a very poor job. Maybe that's just me.
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#7
I've been using my nasal and full face masks for 2 years now, i only rinse them daily with warm, high pressure water. I totally dont understand the 'mask wears down' unless its a cushion. Silicone doesn't wear out, its high quality.

how about Fisher & Paykel Oracle Oral.
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#8
(06-02-2018, 08:19 AM)michael9346 Wrote: I am a mouth breather so I have tried F10, F20, Quattro full face masks, as well as Wisp, Gels and about four other nasal masks.

I'm curious about that, because of the big differences between the FFMs and the various nasal varieties. When you have used the nasal masks, what have you done about the mouth-breathing? Chin strap, tape, a cervical collar, will power, or nothing? And the big question is whether you prefer any particular type: nasal pillows, nasal with full nose coverage, or FFM? It seems like one of those types must be better than the others for you. For instance, if you can conquer the mouth-breathing either by will power or by using one of those other methods to hold your mouth closed, then you can use a nasal-pillows or nasal-cushion mask (Dreamwear, P10, Brevida), with minimal impact, and not have the problem of the FFM's large area of silicone or foam against your skin.

What puzzles me about this is that you should be telling us what's what, based on your experiences with all those masks, not the other way around. Also, in your experimentation, did you find any masks that were keepers, that you didn't return to the DMEs because you knew you would want to use them again? If so, that's a start.
"I wanted to be a Boy Scout, but I had all the wrong qualities.  They were looking for kids who were trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean, and reverent.  Whereas I tended to be devious, fickle, obstructive, hostile, rude, mean, defiant, glum, extravagant, cowardly, dirty, and sacrilegious."  (George Carlin)
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#9
(06-02-2018, 12:43 PM)crowtor Wrote: I've been using my nasal and full face masks for 2 years now, i only rinse them daily with warm, high pressure water. I totally dont understand the 'mask wears down' unless its a cushion. Silicone doesn't wear out, its high quality.

how about Fisher & Paykel Oracle Oral.

Like this gentleman, I am on the same cushion that I started therapy with, now six months ago.  I use warm water, a dab of dish detergent, and my finger tips to clean and rinse my cushion about every third or fourth day, and then I let it stand to air-dry until night time.  Even my DME's receptionist, bless her heart, stated in earshot of her superiors that most people manage to use their head gear and cushions for up to a year.  Thanking her for her candor, I purchased a bag of filters and a new cushion anyway....just to have them handy in case.  A month later, they're still sealed in their packages.

Your insurer requires a strong indicator that you can adapt to the PAP therapy prescribed, but also that you reliably submit to the treatment....night after night.  They won't reimburse, or pre-pay, for equipment that you seem to have trouble with, even if you would like very much to use it.  So, you'll have to call them, or write them formally, and explain what happened.  Ask for another opportunity to demonstrate compliance.  They will probably agree..........?

Something you might wish to pass on to friends who eventually undertake the same processes is to know and to understand the rules of the 'game'.  And hold to them.  The other parties are counting on you to do that.  Grin
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#10
I use the airfit F20 with the foam mask. It took a bit to get the fit correct (I had to tighten the headgear more than for a silicone mask). I recently was getting big leaks, so I put in a new cushion and leaks are way down. I can't recall which thread I saw this in, but someone has gotten quite a long time from the cushions by wash (or soak?) with water and dawn dish soap. I tried, but perhaps I didn't do it enough, so with the replacement I'm going to soak it weekly and see if that helps.
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