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[Equipment] Nasal Pillows - how to make them work?
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Peter_C Offline

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Machine: System One DS960HS
Mask Type: Full face mask
Mask Make & Model: Mirage Quattro "MED"
Humidifier: Attached
CPAP Pressure: Auto mode-script is:15/3/3
CPAP Software: EncoreBasic Other Software

Other Comments: Severe obstructive sleep apnea 1999/Just got an ASV machine

Sex: Male
Location: Akron, Ohio USA

Post: #1
Nasal Pillows - how to make them work?
I like the idea of 'nasal pillows'. But the two different times I have tried them, my nose has started hurting within a few hours.

Because I must pay for everything, randomly trying masks can get very spendy.

Any tips on how to make nasal pillows work? Are any models much better than another? Why do you use nasal pillows over a nasal mask?

I am not trying to start a "which mask is better" thread, but rather am hoping to learn how to switch and make it work, and learn about some of the different models.
Thanks

*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."
10-26-2013 09:05 AM
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bwexler Offline

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Posts: 563
Joined: Mar 2012

Machine: PRS 1 BiPAP autoSV Advanced, with Heated Tube humidifier
Mask Type: Nasal mask
Mask Make & Model: Sleepweaver Élan
Humidifier: Resperonics Heated Tube humidifier
CPAP Pressure: Max pressure 25.0 cm H20, Max
CPAP Software: SleepyHead EncorePro

Other Comments: CMS 50i with Software for SpO2

Sex: Male
Location: San Marcos, CA, USA

Post: #2
RE: Nasal Pillows - how to make them work?
I have the same problem wth nasal pillows.
My solution is the SleepWeaver Élan.
Being a side sleeper all the hard plastic masks I have tried dig in to some area of my face, and are more prone to leaks as the bed pillow moves them around.
10-26-2013 09:22 AM
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Peter_C Offline

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Posts: 1,308
Joined: Sep 2013

Machine: System One DS960HS
Mask Type: Full face mask
Mask Make & Model: Mirage Quattro "MED"
Humidifier: Attached
CPAP Pressure: Auto mode-script is:15/3/3
CPAP Software: EncoreBasic Other Software

Other Comments: Severe obstructive sleep apnea 1999/Just got an ASV machine

Sex: Male
Location: Akron, Ohio USA

Post: #3
RE: Nasal Pillows - how to make them work?
I just tried (and sent back) a Sleepweaver Anew (FFM), as I couldn't get it to fit at all without massive leaks. Cost me a bit over $20 bucks just to try it (return insurance and shipping).

*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."
10-26-2013 09:55 AM
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bwexler Offline

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Posts: 563
Joined: Mar 2012

Machine: PRS 1 BiPAP autoSV Advanced, with Heated Tube humidifier
Mask Type: Nasal mask
Mask Make & Model: Sleepweaver Élan
Humidifier: Resperonics Heated Tube humidifier
CPAP Pressure: Max pressure 25.0 cm H20, Max
CPAP Software: SleepyHead EncorePro

Other Comments: CMS 50i with Software for SpO2

Sex: Male
Location: San Marcos, CA, USA

Post: #4
RE: Nasal Pillows - how to make them work?
I got mine from supplier no 1 and return insurance was free, but I kept the mask and will use it when my nose tells me to.
10-26-2013 10:36 AM
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LOVEDOG Offline

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Posts: 27
Joined: Oct 2012

Machine: Resmed ASV Adapt
Mask Type: Nasal pillows
Mask Make & Model: P-10
Humidifier: H5i/Climateline
CPAP Pressure: eep 6-ps15-4
CPAP Software: ResScan SleepyHead

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Sex: Undisclosed
Location:

Post: #5
RE: Nasal Pillows - how to make them work?
Hi Peter.......I have been a Paper for over 8 years now and have tried almost all masks....because I am a severe mouth breather/snorer I have found the right conbination for myself....and maybe it will work for you. Most importantly I needed to keep my mouth closed, ie keep jaw from dropping. I have to wear a chin strap. I have tried everything not to have to wear one, but nothing works. So the Ruby chin strap and "Chin Ups" (the horse shoe). You can google the "Chin Ups" site. Then I found a mask that I really like a lot....the Wisp. This mask gives you a great seal without the irriatation of something going up your nares.. It comes with 3 different sizes of nose pillows so you can try each one to see which size is best for you. They are small cups that just go around your nose and the straps can be worn loose. The medium works best for me, but I can also wear the large. I know this seems like a lot on your face, but it is what I have to do to have a quiet, moist mouth, non leak night....and you do get used to it.

I always like to just through out what I do in hopes that it will be of help to someone else, as getting the right combination of mask, while keeping your mouth closed and making yourself comfortable is so personal and of course different for everyone!

LOVEDOG
(This post was last modified: 10-26-2013 11:28 AM by LOVEDOG.)
10-26-2013 11:22 AM
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PaulaO2 Offline
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Posts: 8,057
Joined: Feb 2012

Machine: S9 Autoset
Mask Type: Full face mask
Mask Make & Model: F&P Simplus
Humidifier: H5i
CPAP Pressure: 14-20
CPAP Software: SleepyHead

Other Comments: Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, Hypermobility Type; chronic sarcasm

Sex: Undisclosed
Location: western NC, USA

Post: #6
RE: Nasal Pillows - how to make them work?
I have to use the nasal pillows because every nasal mask I tried leaked into my eyes. And I have tried a ton of them. Plus a lot of them caused allergic like reactions to my cheeks if it was summer.

I've tried a lot of the nasal pillows and some work, some don't. Most of them are very, very lightweight which is both good and bad. They are so lightweight, it is like you aren't wearing one. But then the slightest pull on the hose and it will dislodge. The trick to nasal pillows is to keep adjusting them until you get the right angle into and onto your nose. It can take a while! It's not just the pillows themselves, but whatever they sit in and the headgear. It is all very connected when it comes to this type of mask. Then, once you find that sweet spot, to figure out how to get it back when it moves out of place. It's not hard to do after a few nights. It takes just a few seconds each night and maybe once during the night to fix it back. The Breeze, for me, was the best mask (but it was noisy, I will agree to that).

If it was burning, then you may have had it aimed more at the side of the nostril than into the nostril, if that makes sense. One thing that may help is to do a sinus nasal rinse before using. You can also try one of the mists or gels. Ayr makes one that I have used when I have a cold and my nostril is tender.

PaulaO2
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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.
10-26-2013 01:19 PM
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Sleepster Offline
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Posts: 4,988
Joined: Feb 2012

Machine: ResMed AirCurve10 VAuto
Mask Type: Full face mask
Mask Make & Model: F&P Simplus
Humidifier: HumidAir and SlimLine Hose
CPAP Pressure: MaxI 13.6 | MinE 5.2 | PS 4.4
CPAP Software: ResScan SleepyHead

Other Comments: Diagnosed Nov 2011. Conquered aerophagia.

Sex: Male
Location: Houston, Texas

Post: #7
RE: Nasal Pillows - how to make them work?
(10-26-2013 09:05 AM)Peter_C Wrote:  I like the idea of 'nasal pillows'. But the two different times I have tried them, my nose has started hurting within a few hours.

Sounds like you had them too tight. Also, use a salve to reduce that pain while your nose toughens up. Lanisoh is marketed as a salve for nursing mothers, and it works as well or better than anything else I've tried. After a few months I found I no longer needed any salve.

Personally, I feel that the advantage to nasal pillows is they reduce the length of the perimeter that must be sealed between mask and face. For sure I have an easier time getting a good seal.

If you route your hose up over your head like I do, it limits your choices. I'm using the Opus 360 right now and plan on trying the Wisp next.

Sleepster
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www.ApneaBoard.com


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.
10-26-2013 01:39 PM
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Peter_C Offline

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Posts: 1,308
Joined: Sep 2013

Machine: System One DS960HS
Mask Type: Full face mask
Mask Make & Model: Mirage Quattro "MED"
Humidifier: Attached
CPAP Pressure: Auto mode-script is:15/3/3
CPAP Software: EncoreBasic Other Software

Other Comments: Severe obstructive sleep apnea 1999/Just got an ASV machine

Sex: Male
Location: Akron, Ohio USA

Post: #8
RE: Nasal Pillows - how to make them work?
Thank you for all the feedback thus far. It isn't that I mind a mask, or even a bigger mask, but seal issues are tiring, and air blowing in my eyes I cannot stand whatsoever! My current mask (listed to the left) is the best that I could find back when it first came out and I had insurance and could order one new mask every three months (for those of you that are allowed to do so, I highly suggest getting the maximum number of masks your insurance allows you to get, both for spares, and to try new ones), it seals well, doesn't leak into my eyes when it does leak, but it can be painful at times.

Too tight is most likely the issue I had, as it was flat out pain with use. I am mostly a side sleeper, but sometimes turn onto my back, which makes everything worse - so my wife usually wakes me to roll over at that point. For some reason, she dislikes it when I stop breathing. Smile

I haven't tried a chin-strap in many years, and they look nicer than they once were, so I may revisit that, but generally, my mouth does not open, it is more a case of air hissing past my lips, but again most often that is not an issue, and again, my wife tends to wake me when/if I start to hiss.

Like Sleepster suggested, I like the idea of a smaller area to have to worry about sealing, plus my wife likes my beard, which complicates matters.

So, so far, folks like:
The Wisp (which headgear?)
Opus 360
The Breeze

PaulaO2 - what are you using now if not the Breeze? I've been using vendor #1 for some years, and the Wisp currently has free return insurance, so it won't cost much to try it.

As for a nose rinse, I have been using "AlKalol" for many years - mixed with warm water. It has none of the bad effects, really opens you up, and is fairly cheap if you can find it.

*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."
10-26-2013 03:35 PM
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Bobshouse Offline

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Posts: 58
Joined: Aug 2012

Machine: Resmed S9 Auto
Mask Type: Nasal pillows
Mask Make & Model: Tap Pap or The Breeze
Humidifier: Resmed H5I
CPAP Pressure: 10 Auto to 20
CPAP Software: ResScan SleepyHead

Other Comments:

Sex: Male
Location: Central California

Post: #9
RE: Nasal Pillows - how to make them work?
nasal pillows didn't work for me until I tried the "dialator" pillows. They extend up into your nares deeper and have a better chance for a seal than the regular pillows. Coating them with a little Neosporin helps until your used to them.
10-26-2013 04:07 PM
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robysue Online
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Joined: Oct 2013

Machine: PR Dreamstation BiPAP Auto
Mask Type: Nasal pillows
Mask Make & Model: Swift FX
Humidifier: PR Dreamstation humidfier
CPAP Pressure: min EPAP = 4; max IPAP = 9;
CPAP Software: SleepyHead EncoreBasic EncorePro

Other Comments: Papping since September 2010

Sex: Female
Location: Buffalo, NY

Post: #10
RE: Nasal Pillows - how to make them work?
I have used the Swift FX nasal Pillows mask right from the start. Why? Because I absolutely cannot stand having something on top of my nose. During my first titration study I kept sneezing when the tech held the nasal mask about three inches or so away from my face. And the during five minutes or so she had it on my nose the itching was intense. I'm not claustrophobic, but I've got really sensitive skin and not being able to scratch the top of my nose was (and still is) a huge issue.

How do you make the pillows style masks work?
First, you don't over tighten the straps. I keep the straps on my FX ridiculously loose---so loose in fact that without the machine turned on, my mask is likely to fall off my face. But once my machine is turned on, the pillows fully inflate and rest against my nostrils very firmly but gently.

Other tips: Read and reread the fitting guide carefully. The bulk of the nasal pillow cones stays OUTSIDE the nostril. (A very common mistake is for people, including RTs, to jam way too much of the cone into the nostrils.) On a typical nasal pillows mask, only the very tippy-tip of the cone goes into the nostril. You also have to pay careful attention to the angle you have the cones at. Too steep or too shallow will lead to leaks OR will lead to the inner surfaces of your nose being assaulted with a jet stream of air from the nasal pillows. If there's any leaking at all, you gently pull the pillows slightly away from the nostrils while the machine is still running and then allow them to settle back against your nose. It's also important to use a nasal pillow that is BIG enough. If the pillow is too small, then too much of the cone is likely to slip into the nostril. Ideally, the diameter of the base of the cone should be a bit bigger than the outside edge of the nostril it rests against.

For sore nostrils, use Lansinoh lanolin nipple cream. It's sold to nursing mothers to soothe dry, cracked, sore nipples. So you find it in the baby aisle of drug stores and grocery stores. It comes in a purple tube; it's a bit expensive, but a tiny bit goes a long, long way. (I am still using my original tube, but then I no longer need it on a nightly basis.) Lansinoh is made out of 100% lanolin (not petroleum) and it's safe both to insert into your nose and for the silicone in the nasal pillows. Lansinoh has the same texture as vasoline (which is NOT safe for your mask) and for many people the fact that it is a tiny bit tacky helps keep those nasal pillows stuck to the nostrils just a little bit better.

Final tip: If you feel like your nose is being pushed into a "piggy nose", you've got the straps too tight OR you've put too much of the nasal pillow cones inside the nostrils OR both.
10-26-2013 04:09 PM
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