Choosing a CPAP Mask
Choosing the right CPAP mask is a big decision for people who’ve been diagnosed with sleep apnea. Research has shown that patients who own comfortable masks are much more likely to use their CPAP machines and get better sleep; on the other hand, people with masks that either don’t fit or function properly are more likely to veer from their prescribed treatments. Here, we’ll talk about the top three masks on the market so that you have the information you need to purchase the right mask for you. We’ll focus on one mask from each of the three main types of masks: the ResMed AirTouch F20 (full-face), the ResMed AirFit N20 (nasal), and the Philips Respironics Dreamwear Gel (nasal pillow). Read on to learn more about these great options.
ResMed AirTouch F20
The ResMed AirTouch F20 is a unique entry in our list because its seal is made of UltraSoft memory foam. This item is an update of ResMed’s AirFit F20, which seals with traditional silicone. The AirTouch F20 is designed with comfort in mind. Because of the memory foam seal, this full-face mask doesn’t cause the same irritation and marks on the face that some may experience when using its silicone-based cousin. The mask is lightweight, forms a tight-but-comfortable seal, and if you already use the AirFit F20, there’s no need to purchase new headgear (outside of your normal replacement schedule), as both members of the F20 family use the same magnetic gear. You’ll notice the difference right away as the memory foam conforms to the contours of your face even better than does the silicone; and in the morning, you won’t have the ring around your nose and mouth that you may have with a traditional full-face mask. Because of the memory foam element and quality that comes with the ResMed name, the AirTouch F20 is a bit more pricey, but the extra dollars are worth it for a restful night’s sleep. Help Medical Supplies currently has a great price ($114.95) on this mask along with headgear, with substantial savings when compared to other retailers. If you’re in the market for only the cushion without the headgear, head over to 1800CPAP and pick one up for the relatively low price of $54.
ResMed AirFit N20
Staying with ResMed, the AirFit N20 is our choice for the top nasal mask. Using ResMed’s InfinitySeal technology, the AirFit N20 is a great choice to keep as little air from leaking as possible. The N20’s headgear is lightweight and rests under the user’s eyes, allowing for an unobstructed view if you’re wearing your mask while reading, watching TV, or talking with your partner. With an easy-release magnetic clip, this nasal mask is quickly removable when it’s time to wake up and start your day. The design is simple, and new users will find the ease of use to be a welcome addition to their nightly slumber. Go to DirectHomeMedical to pick up the full mask and headgear for $99, or 1800CPAP for the cushion only, for just $29.
Philips Respironics Dreamwear Gel
Our final entry on our list is the Philips Respironics Dreamwear Gel. Considered to be one of the most comfortable masks on the market, this nasal pillow mask is ideal for those who don’t want their entire face or nose covered and want the freedom to move in bed as they choose and sleep in any position in which they’re comfortable. Think of this mask as “simplicity and minimalism come to sleep therapy.” The Dreamwear Gel’s frame is made of silicone but is surrounded by soft cloth so as not to irritate the skin through the night. As with all nasal pillow masks, this isn’t for everyone. But if you’re one of the many who prefers the pillows to traditional nasal or full-face CPAP masks, this is the option for you. Respshop has the headgear and three pillows for just $109, while you can get replacement pillows for $39 from The CPAP Shop.