Sleep apnea affects as many as 18 million Americans every year. People who have untreated sleep apnea are four times as likely to have a stroke than those who do not have sleep apnea. This is why it is important to find the right fitting mask and cpap machine to fit your sleep habits as well as your lifestyle. By wearing the right type of mask or cpap nasal pillows, you are more likely to wear the mask every night. For best results, cpap should be used at least 70% of the time over a 30 day period, for at least four hours every night. There are two main types of cpap masks, a full face cpap mask and nasal pillows.
Full Face CPAP Mask
The full face cpap mask covers both your mouth and nose and are secured with straps. This type of mask is best if you breathe mostly through your mouth at night. Even if you are more of a nose breather, the full face mask can still be more comfortable, it just depends on your personal preference.
The full face cpap mask fits closely onto your face, so it may not be the right option if you are claustrophobic. Yet, these masks provide the most stable and reliable fit of all the types of cpap masks.
CPAP nasal pillows fit under your nose and are secured with straps across your face. Some people like these better because they feel less claustrophobic and can wear glasses with them while reading at night. If you are a mouth breather or move around a lot throughout the night, these may not be the best option as they will not work as effectively as a full face mask.
On an average night, a person who suffers from obstructive sleep apnea may experience 60 apneas per hour, so it is important to get the right type of mask for your face and lifestyle. The more comfortable your mask is, the more likely you are to wear it on a regular basis. This is the most important part when it comes to treating sleep apnea, wearing the mask on a regular basis and having a comfortable fit. Talk to your doctor about the right fit of a cpap mask or nasal pillow for you.