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Nasal prong and nasal mask fitting -- seal question. Help me save my dad!
#11
When you buy a new mask it comes with a variety of different sized pillows. Equipment suppliers are not supposed to remove them before they give it to you.

Try a dab of lanolin applied with q-tip to the inside of the nostrils (available in the baby supply isle of the drug store and sold as a salve for nursing mothers). It will be needed for only a little while until he adapts.

Keep in mind that as he adapts all these things will bother him less. And as he adjusts to getting better sleep he'll be less grumpy. Sometimes we get this mind set where we are so used to being tired all the time lethargy becomes a habit.

Sleepster
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#12
I have been using a Swift FX for several years now after having tried three full masks, a hybrid and three other nasal pillows.

With the CPAP machine off, I wear the Swift FX with the pillows loosely fitting against my nostrils. There would actually be a small open gap between the pillows and my nostrils. When I turn the CPAP machine on, the air pressure expands the pillows and forms a good seal which is pretty comfortable.

If the pillows leak with the CPAP running I adjust the pillows and/or make small adjustments on the straps until the leak stops.
The point is to tighten the straps as little as possible. Just enough to create a good seal WHILE the CPAP machine is running.

Hope this helps
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#13
Have a look at the Youtube from Resmed about fitting their Swift FX nasal pillows (prongs) I assume the basic principles should apply to all pillows, more or less.
titled "ResMed Swift FX Fitting and Use" as I cannot post the link.
It helped me a lot in getting my mask tuned as I am only 2 weeks in and still fine tuning my fit

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#14
I've had mine four years, and have had a fair amount of issues with masks. Don't discount the level of discomfort he is experiencing if the mask or nasal tube is tubbing him raw. I tested a Liberty which covers the mouth and has two tubes up the nose. After the first night the inside of my nose was on fire, and i told my wife it had been raped by a band of marauding guinea pigs having a gang bang! I wouldn't want to inflict that on anyone!

OTOH, my issues mostly come from the high pressures I need - 22 inhale and 16 exhale where many people are less than 10. I have had to search for a mask is comfortable when tight, without too much bounce in the seal (some masks would bounce and scream when I inhaled), and with backing for the rubber seal all the way around.....without bridge support I get an air blast in my eyes. The one I have currently has a shelf under my chin which keeps the mask from riding up (one mask blocked my nose when it slid up, and 'taught' me to mouth breathe which gives 100% leakage) About all I can suggest is trying a bunch of different masks and trying to analyze the designs for what works for your Dad.

Does it ride up? Does the seal blow out? Does his face and mask need daily oil removal...washing?
Room temperature is a big issue if he doesn't have an air temperature thermostat....I get rainstorms and nearly drown if the room gets too cold, and toss and knock the mask out of position if I'm too hot.
Does the mask contour fit his face well enough that it doesn't need to be painfully tight?

Getting it to work well is a big deal. You can see the results when it works, and you will see it in lower blood pressure, energy, and general health. Keep trying!
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#15
Is your dad on medicare? If so, they are shortchanging him on necessary pillow sizes. I'm not sure about that particular mask, but mine, which is the swift fx for ladies, has pillows of various sizes. If there's a gap by the pillow it could be too small. Tightening the strap will help it seal, but make it uncomfortably tight on his head. Try getting other size pillows. If it doesn't work with that particular mask, try the fx swift for men. Alot of us use that here. That will also remove the situation with his nose being sore at the bridge if he uses pillows. One more thing. My father in law had walking pneumonia recently. Before he was hospitalized he became almost incoherent, not making sense, not even knowing who I am. Once he got treatment he was fine. He had oxygen loss and it mimicked alzheimer's <spelling, sorry> disease! He's fine now since we caught it early. Keep us posted. What a lucky Dad he is to have a guardian angel like you! Love, DJ
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