My new CPAP mask has arrived. It is one of a very different type that I am trying – the DreamWear FitPack Nasal Mask
Despite appearances, it is not a nasal pillow mask, as can be seen from the picture. It is actually a teeny-tiny cushion mask that fits only across the nostrils. The headgear itself is the air-tube, ending in a hose connector on top of your head. Thus suits me plenty, as I drape my hose over my bed’s headboard. There is a single strap, with velcro adjusters, and no forehead pad.
The mask comes in 4 fits – Large, Medium, Small and Medium Wide. This is where careful shopping comes into things. Buying from EU-PAP, who I recommend, when you buy this mask it comes with all 4 nasal cushions, in all 4 sizes, so you can find the right one for you in the comfort of your home. Other sellers I have found ask you specifically for the size when ordering, which suggests they only supply the size you think you need. For the same price.
This is actually important, because I automatically order Medium Wide, as that is the size I am used to for normal masks – this is more for comfort than need, I like a roomy mask. But although the Medium Wide cushion for this mask fits and works ok, I think I may find the Medium a better fit.
The mask is easy to put on, even when the velcro is adjusted for fit. This is good, as once you get it adjusted right, you don’t really want to move that velcro every time you put the mask on or take it off. I found it comfortable to wear, and my CPAP definitely seemed to be delivering air to my nose through it. Of course, the acid test is when I actually go to sleep.
When I bought this mask, I considered that, at worst, it might be a handy respite from my normal mask; that I could wear it when my skin was sore, and then return to my tried and tested solution once it is healed. However, if this mask works out, I may find myself preferring it.
Another thing I have discovered is that I can actually wear my glasses with this mask. Although I tend not to wear glasses in bed, even when reading, so this is not important to me, but might be for others.
This mask is not cheap; it comes in at £120 quid, which doesn’t make it an impulse buy, but how do you value a good night’s sleep?
[Edit: The individual nasal cushions are available as spares, at around the £40-45 mark, so ongoing costs are comparable with regular masks.]