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Lets talk leaks
Lets talk leaks
Good afternoon,
I have always had leaks but since I always felt fine in the morning, I ignored them.  However the last few nights have been leak atrocious. I get the dreaded red sad face on my machine.  I have included two attachments. The 1st screenshot is typical... API usually below 3. The 2nd is leak atrocious. You will notice that in both screen shots there is mask off time - I get up once a night to use the facilities and forget to put my mask back on - (nasal mask) - sometimes on purpose.  You will notice some CAs... I used to have some nights 7-9 per hour but after taking advice from this board they are now about 1 per hour - less then 15 sec. so I don't worry about them -  Even with the leaks I still feel pretty good in the morning.  But would like advice about getting the leaks down to a reasonable percentage of my night. 
As always - Thank you! - This is such a great service - Glen
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RE: Lets talk leaks
Yep, that's pretty bad leakage. It could be that the mask is leaking, but it looks more like the pressure going into your nose is escaping through your mouth. There are three avenues of attack:

1. Adjust / replace your mask so that it doesn't leak (assuming mask leak is the problem).
2. Learn to keep your mouth shut (assuming mouth leaking is the problem).
3. Replace the mask with a full-face type so that pressure is equalised between nose and mouth (assuming mouth leaking is the problem).

Assuming 1) is eliminated then try to keep your mouth shut. Here are some options:
  • The first thing to try is the tongue trick - place the tongue against the palate with the tip just behind the top front teeth. Suck gently to pull the tongue into a position where it seals the mouth off the airway. Hold this position all night.
  • Use a chin strap to gently hold your jaw closed.
  • Try a cervical collar to prevent your jaw dropping open.
  • Try taping your lips closed with a low-adhesive surgical tape. Personally I do not recommend this option but others seem to have success with it.

Finally, change your nasal mask for a full face mask, so it won't matter if you open your mouth. The AirTouch F20 is the current favourite and I have found it suits me.
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RE: Lets talk leaks
Thank you - I will try a chin strap tonight - cannot go back to a full face mask. Started out with one and my sleep was worse than with the apnea. I truly appreciate your suggestions.
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