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Solving a Leak in a CPAP Mask
A leaky CPAP mask is a significant problem. If air is escaping from your mask, you aren’t getting the proper air pressure you require to completely treat your sleep apnea. It can also cause discomfort in the airways and nasal passages, leading to them to dry out and become irritated, even with the use of the CPAP humidifier.
The air from your CPAP machine, coming through the mask, is supposed to be a splint to hold your airways open while asleep. Depending on the extent of your sleep apnea, you may need a higher air pressure than someone with a low severity case of sleep apnea.
This is why it’s so crucial always to get the optimum air pressure. Don’t want to feel bad or put your health in danger, and you don’t want to be using the CPAP machine unnecessarily. There are two distinctive types of CPAP mask leaks that you should know. If you spot one of these leaks, you should let your sleep therapist know soonest.
Below are different types of CPAP Leaks:
1. Seal Leak
The leak in the seal of the CPAP mask is the most often encountered kind of hole. A loose mask often causes this, and it occurs when there’s a small space between your face and the seal.
2. Mouth Leak
This occurs when you breathe with your mouth wide open while you sleep, and the air coming from the mask emanates from your throat out of your mouth.
What happens when your CPAP mask leaks?
Both of these kinds of mask leaks can cause similar problems. If the pressure isn’t checked, not only will it impact your health, but it can also tamper with the machine’s sensors. This, in turn, affects how the CPAP responds with the right amount of air pressure. This will ultimately lead to your CPAP machine breaking down faster and need to be maintained more often.
A leak in the seal can lead to the air blowing on your face and in your eyes, which is a very irritating sensation. This is also when nasal irritation occurs because the air isn’t directed to where it’s supposed to.
How do you deal with CPAP mask leaks?
If you get a seal leak, it might be due to a crease in the seal, either from tightening hard or from moving and causing the seal to deform. Turn off the machine and move the mask away from your face, just enough to align out the curve, and rest it back on your face.
You can also choose a premium quality mask that won’t bend in the seal. You can wear the mask looser, and it still won’t form a leak. Another solution is a specific pillow called a CPAP Pillow, shaped in a manner that prevents leaks.