The continuous positive airway pressure or CPAP therapy is normally recommended as treatment for obstructive sleep apnea. This treatment is recommended once you are diagnosed as suffering from sleep apnea. The diagnosis is made after you have gone through a sleep study. The study is able to determine the severity of your sleep apnea and the doctor can then write a prescription.
The prescription indicates the CPAP machine that you should use and the pressure settings of the machine. It also indicates that you should use a CPAP mask and the doctor may add a schedule for replacement of the mask.
In order to undergo CPAP therapy, you need a CPAP machine, a tube and a CPAP mask. The machine draws in air from the room and it passes through a filter. The air is then pressurized and the air is transmitted through a tube to the mask. You can breathe in the air by wearing a mask over your nose and mouth or over your nose only.
The masks are normally padded with a variety of materials including silicone, gel or cloth. The padded areas of the mask are those that come into contact with your skin so that you can get the comfort that you need. The masks come with a head strap which is fastened on the head in order to keep the mask in place during therapy. There is also an area in the mask that is designed to get rid of the air that you exhale during therapy.
Features Of The Full Face Mask
The full face mask covers your mouth and nose normally has supportive parts which are fitted on the forehead and the cheeks in order to create a good seal. This is the largest mask in terms of the contact it has with your skin. It is ideal if you typically breathe via the mouth when asleep. You may also find it comfortable to use if your doctor has recommended that you use a high pressure for your therapy.
Since this mask has a lot of contact with your skin, the possibility of air leakage is higher than the other masks. You should therefore ensure that you have a very good fit since air leakage reduces the effectiveness of the therapy. It is best to sleep on your back when using this mask as it tends to dislodge when you sleep on your side.
The nasal mask is worn over the nose and you should not breathe through your mouth when using this mask. The pressurized air from the tube is delivered into the space that is covered by the mask and you can then breathe it in. The pressurized air is therefore not delivered directly into your nostrils, which allows you to breathe in comfortably.
You can use this mask if you normally sleep on your side and if you toss a lot when asleep. You can use the nasal mask if you prefer to read or watch television in bed since it does not obstruct your vision.
The nasal pillow is fitted at the edge of your nostrils and creates a very good seal. It is the smallest CPAP mask and is perfect if you are claustrophobic.