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How to tell when a mask needs replacing
#11
My DME has been giving me a new nasal pillow every month, so I assume that's how often it should be replaced.
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#12
Most Insurance Companies have a replacement schedule for XPAP consumables, typically they follow something close to the following:

Item Replacement Frequency
CPAP Mask..................Every 3 months
CPAP Headgear ...........Every 3-6 months
CPAP Tubing ...............Every 3 months
Disposable Filter .........2 new filters every month
Non-disposable Filters ..2 new filters every 6 months
CPAP Chin strap ..........Every 6 months
Full Face Mask ............Every 3 months
Oral CPAP Mask ..........Every 3 months
Humidifier Chamber ....Every 6 months - my DME does every 3.




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#13
(03-01-2015, 07:49 AM)Lukie Wrote: I was told that the cushion part of your mask regardless of type should be replaced every month. Why? Because the silicone is porous and bacteria get into the pores and are hard to remove even with regular washing. This pitting is microscopic so you cannot see it. Frequent cushion changes which ins and medicare have agreed to is because of research proving this. Changing mask cushions is less expensive for the ins companies than treating pneumonia and other respiratory diseases.

Nose is a primary reservoir of S. Aureus bacteria. So if you are populating your nasal pillow cushion with it, its the same bacteria that live inside your nose all the time.

http://med.stanford.edu/news/all-news/20...finds.html
Started APAP 4-20, Closed range to 7.5-14, then straight 8.0 w/ Aflex 3
RDI always below 1. But sleep much much better at straight pressure.
Started on F10, Tried Quattro Air successfully. Finally settled on P10.
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#14
(03-02-2015, 06:53 PM)AshSF Wrote:
(03-01-2015, 07:49 AM)Lukie Wrote: I was told that the cushion part of your mask regardless of type should be replaced every month. Why? Because the silicone is porous and bacteria get into the pores and are hard to remove even with regular washing. This pitting is microscopic so you cannot see it. Frequent cushion changes which ins and medicare have agreed to is because of research proving this. Changing mask cushions is less expensive for the ins companies than treating pneumonia and other respiratory diseases.

Nose is a primary reservoir of S. Aureus bacteria. So if you are populating your nasal pillow cushion with it, its the same bacteria that live inside your nose all the time.

http://med.stanford.edu/news/all-news/20...finds.html

Your link implies that it is more complicated than that. It also implies that this bacteria is dangerous (even fatal) if it can get through a cut, so the takeaway seems to be wash the mask or replace it if you have an open irritation on your nose.

But before we scare each other to death, there is a huge difference between bacteria depositing on a mask where it can't be removed, and bacteria growing in a culture. If the bacteria came from your nose and just sits on the mask waiting for you to put it back on again, yes, it can get back into your nose, from where it came, in the same concentration as when it left, which doesn't seem like it would be problematic.

On the other hand, if the bacteria were sitting on an active medium where it could grow and reproduce, then it might be. But it does not seem that porous silicone is anything close to an active ecosystem for growth. Still, those of you who top off the humidifier every night with added water instead of washing it out and using new water are probably deeply in a game of Russian Roulette.

I recommend using bacterial hand soap for the mask/pillows, and let it sit on there for 10 minutes before washing off (triclosan kills bacteria, but it takes 10 minutes at these concentrations, so washing your hands for 30 seconds with bacterial soap is just about as effective as washing your hands for 30 seconds with non-bacterial soap).

And of course, replace as often as you can.
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#15
If you're sharing your mask with someone else, yes, you need to replace it more often. If you're doing something else that will let it pick up germs you're not already exposed to, replace it more often.

Other than that, I don't see how your mask is going to be that much more of a germ source than the other items in your house like your bed sheets, your toothbrush, your clothing, your furniture, walls, doorknobs, shoes, TV remote, etc.

Maybe you should drop the silicone cushion parts in boiling water once a month or so. A good cleaning is a good idea, but cleaning chemicals don't always get into the crooks, crannies, and pores of things. Heat tends to get everywhere if you let it "soak" long enough to get into all parts of the item in question.

Most germs on the mask are probably there from you. If you had germ X living on your nose a few weeks ago, and you spread it to the mask, is it going to make that much difference if you get the same germ back today?

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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#16
I am following a recommendation (can't remember from who), to use baby shampoo to clean my nasal pillow every day. Johnson's baby shampoo is not anti-bacterial, correct? Should I opt for anti bacterial instead? I have not considered boiling the nasal pillows as I have heard that it can damage the gel in them.
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#17
(03-03-2015, 11:47 AM)novatom Wrote: I am following a recommendation (can't remember from who), to use baby shampoo to clean my nasal pillow every day. Johnson's baby shampoo is not anti-bacterial, correct? Should I opt for anti bacterial instead? I have not considered boiling the nasal pillows as I have heard that it can damage the gel in them.

Soap all by itself is an antibacterial. You put soap in water so it dissolve fat. The cell walls of bacteria are made largely of fat. Soapy water disrupts the cell walls and kills bacteria.



Ed Seedhouse
VA7SDH

I am neither a Doctor, nor any other kind of medical professional.

Actually you know, it is what it isn't.
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#18
Antibacterial soaps leave a residue behind despite thorough rinsing. I personally do not trust that the residue will not harm the seal over time so I do not use antibacterial soap.

Best Regards,

PaytonA
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#19
(03-03-2015, 11:47 AM)novatom Wrote: I am following a recommendation (can't remember from who), to use baby shampoo to clean my nasal pillow every day. Johnson's baby shampoo is not anti-bacterial, correct? Should I opt for anti bacterial instead? I have not considered boiling the nasal pillows as I have heard that it can damage the gel in them.

Don't do it with any mask parts you don't have spares for. Try it on parts after you get a replacement. I wasn't thinking gel parts, but they might be OK. When I've done something like this, I boil the water, turn it off, and then drop the parts into the water.

(03-03-2015, 12:57 PM)eseedhouse Wrote: Soap all by itself is an antibacterial. You put soap in water so it dissolve fat. The cell walls of bacteria are made largely of fat. Soapy water disrupts the cell walls and kills bacteria.

The "anti-bacterial-ness" of soap is greatly exaggerated. There's some germ killing action, but it's not 100%. Normal soap works mostly by removing germs from surfaces, not by killing them.

It's doubly questionable how well soap does getting down into the pores being discussed here and either killing or removing the germs.
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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#20
One side note: Don't try boiling the P10 nasal pillows. The silicone is attached to a low temp plastic frame. If you boil them, you will successfully create a nasal pillow glue ball.
Statistics prove that people who have more birthdays live longer.
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