CPAP-BPAP devices are used in the treatment of diseases such as sleep apnea or COPD. These are breathing apparatus and are connected to the patient through a mask. Respiratory parameters determined by physicians for treatment are adjusted on the devices. Different parameters can be applied according to the type and level of the diseases. Compressed air from the device reaches the patient through a hose and a mask. There are different types of masks. These are nasal pillow mask, nasal cannula, nasal mask, oral mask, ora-nasal mask and full face mask. For the effectiveness of the treatment, the mask type that best suits the patient's facial structure and disease level should be used. Otherwise, the patient may not be able to use the device or may not benefit even if he / she uses it. In some cases, the wrong mask selection can even harm the patient. Which device will be used with which mask with which respiratory parameters are determined by the physicians as a result of the tests. The compatibility of the masks used in the treatment of respiratory diseases directly affects the effectiveness of the treatment. Masks are just as important as the devices.
There are some things to consider when choosing a new mask or using an existing mask. These are: Treatment information, device type and physical condition of the user. The person can evaluate the fit of the mask by asking the following questions:
- Is the size of the mask compatible with the patient's face?
- Do you have skin redness that does not go away for hours after removing the mask?
- Are there any wounds on the nose, forehead and face?
- Does the mask fixation band on the back of the head cause pain?
- Is there any air leak from the parts of the mask that touch the face?
- Is there any pain in the parts of the mask that touch the face?
- Is the mask used too tightly or too loosely?
How to Determine the Right Mask Type?
There are 6 types of masks that can be used in respirators: nasal cannula, nasal mask, oral mask, ora-nasal mask and full face mask. Their designs are different from each other. Not all types of masks are suitable for every patient. Which variety can be used on doctor's recommendation should be determined.
Nose pad masks are produced in very small and light form. Most models do not have parts in contact with the face. It delivers the air from the device directly to the nostrils. Because of the small silicones that cover the nostrils, it is called a mask with nasal pillows. It is not suitable for use with high treatment pressures as it blows air directly into the nostrils. When used with high pressure, it can cause dryness and wound in the nose. When used with low pressure, it can rarely cause complaints such as dryness and wound. In such cases, you should switch to different masks. Nasal pillow masks are one of the masks that people who use nasal masks can prefer. It is actually a kind of nasal mask.
Nasal cannulas are products that are visually similar to oxygen cannulae used in oxygen therapy. Difference from oxygen cannula wider that is. Used in high flow therapy. This technique is applied with respirators in hospitals for the treatment of diseases that affect the lungs such as COVID-19. Nasal cannulas send the air from the device directly into the patient's nostrils.
Nasal masks are placed over the user's nose and secured behind their head. It transmits the air from the respiratory devices to the patient through the nose. The patient's mouth is exposed. The person should keep his mouth closed while using the device, if he opens it, the air entering through his nose will leave his mouth and cause discomfort.
Oral masks are designed exactly the opposite of nasal masks. It provides breathing by covering right over the mouth. The user's nose is exposed. It gives the air from the breathing apparatus to the patient through the mouth. They are very rarely used masks.
Ora-nasal masks are like a combination of both nasal and oral masks. It is attached to the face, over the mouth and nose. It provides simultaneous administration of the air exiting the respirator both through the mouth and nose.
All face masks are mostly used in intensive care. It is also preferred by respiratory device users who continue their treatment at home. If the user is not comfortable with ora-nasal masks all face masks can be tried. These masks cover the entire face from forehead to cheeks and chin.
How to Choose the Right Mask Size?
CPAP-BPAP masks are available in sizes varying according to the physical condition of the users. These are varied as small, medium and large, such as clothing sizes. Some brands even produce sizes such as XXsmall, Xsmall, Xlarge and XX large. Some models are one size. It has no types, it has standard sizes. Users should prefer masks that are suitable for the head and face structures. Otherwise, the mask will not fit properly and air leakage may occur. It can also cause pain and redness in the areas it touches.
Is the Most Expensive Mask the Best Mask?
There are many mask brands on the market. Some device manufacturers also produce masks. There are also manufacturers who do not produce devices and only produce masks. Some mask models can be more expensive than devices. Generally, users think that expensive masks can be more compatible with them and that they can be used more comfortably with expensive masks. However, this is not the case. Expensive masks may not be more comfortable than cheap ones.
There are many people who are satisfied with some models. This does not mean that these masks will be suitable for everyone. Such masks are less risky, they fit most people. However, there are definitely people who are not satisfied with them.
the market most expensive mask it may not be the best mask for the user. Mask selection is a costly and psychologically challenging process. For this reason, it is less tiring to start with mask brands that have been tried and liked by the majority. This method can be tried to avoid wasting both money and time.
How Does the Right Mask Preference Contribute to the Treatment Process?
Treatment processes of respiratory diseases take a long time and should be uninterrupted. Treatments lasting for a few years or lifelong, not 1-2 weeks, can be mentioned. The patient should use the devices as recommended by the physician and continue the treatment without interruption. Masks become very important at this point. The part that touches the skin during the treatment is the mask. If the patient is not comfortable with the mask he uses, he may even give up treatment. For example, if the patient's skin has wounds caused by the mask, treatment may need to be interrupted until these wounds heal. This means that the integrity of the treatment is broken.
Which Materials Are Masks Made Of?
Most of the CPAP-BPAP masks are made of silicone and plastic materials. Most of the masks available in the market are made of silicone, while the rest are plastic. To these silicone mask is called. There are also masks made of gel-like material that is softer than silicone. To these too gel mask is called. Masks are produced from materials that do not harm health. However, some models can cause irritation and sores on some sensitive skin. In such a case, different masks should be tried.
What are the Features of Whipped and Non-Whipped Masks?
Another feature of the masks is fugitive or leak free is that they are. To these viscose or without whiskey can also be called. There are small holes on the masks with leakage, ie vispir. When the patient breathes out, the air accumulated in the mask is expelled through these holes. Thus, carbon dioxide does not accumulate in the mask. Viscose masks are used in all respirators such as CPAP-BPAP. In some cases, mechanical ventilators are applied to patients through a mask. In such a case, viscose-free (leak-free) masks are used. There are no holes on masks without whiskey. The breath given by the patient reaches the device again and after the measurements are made, it is thrown out over the device.
This feature, which is called as leaky or non-leak, should not be confused with the problem of air leakage that escapes from the sides of the mask, disturbs the patient and adversely affects the treatment. It is a mask feature preferred according to the respirator used.