How do you know when you should replace your mask?
Replacing your equipment is an important part of being successful with your sleep therapy. There are several factors you need to watch for related to replacing your mask:
- seal deterioration in the mask,
- an improperly fitting mask, and
- a mask damaged by improper cleaning.
Once a cushion begins to interact with facial oils and acids, the sealing effect of the cushion deteriorates despite proper mask fit and facial hygiene. As a result, more and more leaks can occur. You might react by tightening the headgear and continuing to tighten it over a period of time. While leaks can reduce the effectiveness of PAP therapy, over-tightening causes discomfort and pressure points. The combine result of both issues could lead to reduced usage and effectiveness of your therapy.
A mask that is not properly sized and fitted can cause you to readjust your mask continually and/or over-tighten the headgear very early in the product’s life, also reducing how long it can work effectively. Therapists are trained to properly fit masks, however, your facial features change significantly during sleep. Contact your homecare provider if you feel you have a fitting issue with your mask.
Our mask instructions include cleaning tips to help extend the life of your mask by using mild, soapy water rather than soaps with moisturizers or perfumes. We also recommend replacing masks if they become damaged or show signs of aging, such as leakage issues, cushions that lose shape or contour, and/or mask components or cushions that become cracked or torn.
For any of the problems listed above, or any other questions, please contact your homecare provider.