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How do they decide which mask you should use?
#1
So I've had this question lingering. When I got my CPAP they gave me a nasal mask. No one asked what I wanted. No one told me why they gave me the one they gave me. And I didn't know enough to ask.

My nasal mask seems to be working well, but I am still wondering: How do they decide, on the basis of one study where I'm betting most of us breathe through our mouths, that some of us should have the full mask, some just those nasal thingys, and some the nasal mask?

Is it just the luck of the draw re: which you are given first, or is there some rhyme or reason that you have all figured out?

I get that over time each person may need a change, but what about at the beginning? Any thoughts, or is it just random?
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#2
My DME, for all their faults now, was great in the beginning. The guy I met with showed me all sorts of different masks, told me about each one, and we tried several that first day. He told me why one wouldn't work for me (my small nose) and why another may work better.

I never snore with my mouth open. The only time I did was when I had a cold and that's when I woke myself up the most.
PaulaO2
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#3
I think it's a question of the chances of success. Nasal masks are more comfortable and less likely to leak than full face masks. So unless there are issues with the nasal passages being blocked, like if you're a mouth-breather, then they're going to try to fit with a nasal mask first. I've noticed they sometimes start people off with nasal pillows. That may vary according to each DME's personal success rate, or it may be that when patients seem claustrophobic, or in any way appear to be afraid of a mask, nasal pillows are prescribed. But I think some people don't like the way nasal pillows inflate the inside of their nostrils.

My nasal pillows feel great, I'm getting to where they feel natural.
Sleepster
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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.
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#4
My DME said that the nasal mask is what I did the best with in the sleep study and it was what i used the most that night, after trying several mask one fit pretty good so thats what he based what he gave me on.





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#5
My supplier gave me the mask that I had on my initial sleep study and like you I didn't know any better but I always felt there was something not quite right. (and because they charge $250 odd here for one, I wasn't going to complain) Because they advise to change the mask every 12 months, I went to my supplier and asked for a "petite" I was initially given a "standard". As soon as I put it on my face in the shop, I felt so comfortable. I used to have strap marks on my cheeks and marks by my nose from having to have the bigger one on so tight. Not any more! My leaks are virtually non existent and even tho I have always had pretty good AHI readings - anywhere from 0.5 to 1.6, since wearing the "correct" mask, they have gone down to consistent 0.2
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#6
Hi eaglett1111, When I went for my sleep studies, (I had to go back twice,) because I couldn't get to sleep in time, and the second time, I had trouble, but I did a little better than the first time. Anyway, I slept just enough that they settled on a nasal mask. I didn't get to try several masks the second night because I still had such difficulty.
trish6hundred
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#7
(08-19-2012, 05:42 PM)Sleepster Wrote: I think it's a question of the chances of success. Nasal masks are more comfortable and less likely to leak than full face masks. So unless there are issues with the nasal passages being blocked, like if you're a mouth-breather, then they're going to try to fit with a nasal mask first. I've noticed they sometimes start people off with nasal pillows. That may vary according to each DME's personal success rate, or it may be that when patients seem claustrophobic, or in any way appear to be afraid of a mask, nasal pillows are prescribed. But I think some people don't like the way nasal pillows inflate the inside of their nostrils.

My nasal pillows feel great, I'm getting to where they feel natural.

Aha! So what I called the "nasal thingys" (sorry) are the nasal pillows? Those are the devices that are just in the nose and not over the nose?
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#8
Yep.

Nasal masks go over the entire nose.
Nasal pillows go into the nose.
Full face masks cover the nose and the mouth.
Hybrid masks are part nasal pillow and part over the mouth.

I use the Breeze mask. I didn't want one. They really looked stupid and, despite my lack of care in appearance, I didn't want one. But after a lot of nasal masks, he talked me into trying a nasal pillow mask (it was the Breeze then). I loved it. Slept the entire first night.
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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#9
I think each clinic has a special preference, or some clinics offer a large variety of masks to try. During my sleep test I found out I'm a mouth breater so opted for a FFM. They gave me the best selling FFM at that time- the quattro.
Good Luck.
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#10
When I recently went to my dme for a new machine, they asked what masked I had been using. When I told them I was using a profle lite or a FP flex-fit, she immediately started pushing various ResMed masks. The only masks they had on display were ResMeds. When I asked her about other brands she told me they didn't work as well with my new S9 Autoset. When I told her that was bs, she said they could get some others in (none on site). I had originally asked for a different APAP brand based on what I had read about them but they gave me the ResMes S9. When I asked her why she said the S9 was a much better machine (also way more expensive). I distinctly got the feeling they were pushing ResMed products. I never got that feeling with my previous dme. Although truth be told i've spent around $2k looking for the "perfect" mask.

I too am a mouth breather and tried several full face masks all of which leaked like sieves. I found that using a chin strap pretty much solved that problem. I've seen some of the newer full face masks with a get seal but don't know if they work any better.
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