BHappy, please re-read the forum rules, especially the bit about commercial links. We don't allow people to post direct links to equipment suppliers. I have edited your post accordingly.
First thing to understand is the nature of your apnea. For most people here it is obstructive
sleep apnea, where the upper airway gets physically blocked by the tongue or other tissues. The advice which follows relates to this obstructive apnea. If you have central, complex or mixed apnea, then a somewhat different approach will be required.
There are many brands of CPAP machinery on the market but as a general rule you should stick to either Dreamstation or Resmed. These are the market leaders. There is far more knowledge and support available for these brands, and they are compatible with SleepyHead
software, which will become your friend. Other brands may be just as good, but they're not so widely used and fewer people will be able to advise you on them.
get a fully data capable machine. From the old project management adage: "If you can't measure it, you can't manage it". Don't be tempted to buy a non-data machine to save a few bucks - it's not worth it.
get an autoset machine. These will adjust your pressure up and down depending on your needs at any given time. It's a bit like having a little sleep study every night. Admittedly some people prefer a fixed pressure, but the auto machines can also be set to fixed pressure if that's what you need.
seem the come in three versions: CPAP, Pro and Auto. The CPAP
is a POS which doesn't give you any data as to how your therapy is going. Avoid it like the plague. The Pro
will give you 30 days in autoset mode then revert to fixed pressure. Why? What's the point? Avoid this machine also. Finally the Dreamstation Auto
will give you an autoset machine with full data capability - this is what you want.
machines are made in Australia (if you buy locally) or Singapore (if you buy from the States). Personally I'd happily save a thousand bucks and buy the Singapore version. Like Dreamstation the base model Resmed CPAP
is to be avoided. The Elite
is a fully data capable fixed pressure machine. But the recommended version is the Autoset
which is a fully data capable autosetting machine. There is also a "for her" version which has a gentler algorithm which some women (and many men) prefer. In the States there is a new Resmed model (can't remember the name) which is even more bare bones than the CPAP. Neither this machine nor the CPAP are sold in Australia any more.
As to which to get - I have a leaning towards Resmed machines, but others prefer Dreamstation. The Resmed has a more aggressive algorithm which reacts faster to head off apneas, but this does involve some fairly large pressure swings which disturb some people. The Dreamstation apparently gives you a more comfortable ride at the expense of a few more events slipping through. Different approaches with a similar outcome.
is the hardest part of the whole exercise. I can offer no real advice except try as many as you can to see what suits you. A minor leak is no problem as far as therapy goes, but it can disturb your sleep (or your partner's). Some masks are notorious for blowing into the eyes (eg the Simplus) while many of them do "face farts" which are annoying. If you typically breathe through your mouth then a full face mask (eg Simplus, F10 or F20) would be the go. If you can breathe through your nose and not have air escaping out your mouth then a nasal or pillows type such as the P10 or DreamWear might suit. Personally I can't abide pillows type masks.
Quote:'it will leak till it can vacuum itself to your nostrils'.
BS! How is it supposed to vacuum itself to you when it's blowing air out? Even Mr Bernoulli wouldn't believe that. The fact is, though, that masks can be adjusted to reduce or eliminate leaking by repositioning them on your face and adjusting the straps. As a general rule the straps should be firm but not tight. They should never be so tight as to be painful. You can also get fabric liners which sit between the mask and your face, which can help control leaks and increase comfort - do a search for Remzz and pad-a-cheek.
OK, hope all that helps - don't hesitate to ask any more questions.