CPAP Masks for Mouth Breathers
What is a Mouth Breather?
Mouth breathing is exactly what it sounds like, breathing through your mouth instead of your nose. People who are mouth breathers can experience a lot of undesirable side effects like dry mouth and bad breath but, if you suffer from sleep apnea as well these side effects can worsen. Mouth breathers who suffer from sleep apnea must pay close attention to which type of CPAP or continuous positive airway pressure mask they choose. We recommend choosing full-face CPAP masks because they cover your nose and mouth allowing you to receive the full dose of CPAP therapy. In this post readers, we will explore what mouth breathing is and what causes it as well as our top recommendation for full-face CPAP masks that will benefit mouth breathers.
What Causes Mouth Breathing?
Mouth breathing usually occurs where there is a nasal obstruction. If you suffer from OSA or obstructive sleep apnea, mouth breathing may be a symptom since there is an obstruction not allowing air into your nasal passages thus not allowing you to breathe correctly. OSA patients may breathe with their mouth to accommodate the need for oxygen. There are a lot of nasal obstruction causes but the main ones are nasal congestion, deviated septum, enlarged adenoids, the shape of your nose and jaw. If you suffer from OSA and are a mouth breather who is having a hard time finding the right type of mask let us help. Here are a few of our recommendations for full-face CPAP masks that are perfect for mouth breathers.
Benefits of Full-Face CPAP Masks for Mouth Breathers
As a mouth breather, you may be asking yourself which style of mask is best for me? While this is largely based on personal preference, we recommend using full-face masks. Full-face masks cover both your nose and mouth allowing the air to go into your nose and most of it to be released through your mouth. Some of these full-face masks even help with jaw alignment to help keep your mouth closed. If you really dislike full-face masks or they make you feel claustrophobic, you can use a nasal or nasal pillow mask with a chin strap to keep your mouth closed. If you use a humidifier with your CPAP machine, the full-face mask can help prevent dry mouth and throat dryness by not letting the moist air escape. If you suffer from congestion as well as being a mouth breather, the full-face mask will drastically reduce the irritation of your nasal passages. We would like to share with you readers some recommendations for full-face masks that we think would be perfect for mouth breathers. Please note that the masks we recommend may also be used with BiPAP machines.
The AirFit F20 is one of ResMed’s most popular CPAP full face masks on the market today. This mask cushion comes in three different sizes: small, medium, and large. The AirFit F20 has adjustable headgear with magnetic clips. The malleable memory foam cushion provides more comfort than the hard silicone ones as well as providing a tighter seal. This mask is great for mouth breathers because its cushion shape covers your entire mouth and nose. This lets you receive the full CPAP therapy dose without any air pressure leaking due to the Infinity Seal technology provided by the cushion. The AirFit F20 is capable of withstanding higher pressure settings making it optimal for high-pressure users. The AirFit F20 has three cushion sizes, small, medium and large and has a cost of $149.00
The Simplus Full-Face mask by Fisher and Paykel is another great option for mouth breathers. This mask minimizes leaks that can happen when you sleep with your mouth open by delivering the CPAP therapy to both your nose and mouth. Also if you tend to move around a lot while you sleep the Simplus mask may be beneficial to you since it features integrated stability panels that hold the mask in place. Another wonderful thing about the Simplus mask is that you can purchase a "FitPack" which brings all three sizes of cushion, small. medium and large, to ensure you find your perfect fit. The Simplus full-face mask FitPack has a cost of $119.00
This full-face CPAP mask does not look like the standard full-face masks you are used to. This mask has a cushion the sits right on top of your lip directly under your nostrils. Some CPAP users who tend to breathe through their mouth like the design of this cushion because it doesn’t hurt the bridge of their nose or leave red marks as a standard full-face cushion would. The Amara View full-face mask has an open design that is beneficial for CPAP users who have claustrophobia. The Amara View full face mask features adjustable headgear and provides more stability with a “crown” or head strap that goes directly over the top of the head creating a “crown” that promotes an even distribution of pressure as well as stability. This mask can be used by someone who has facial hair without the mask creating leaks or becoming an uncomfortable burden. The Amara View cushion comes in three sizes: small, medium, and large and has a cost of $89.00.
We’re taking it back to the standard full-face cushion style with ResMed’s Mirage Quattro full face CPAP mask. This standard style cushion starts at the bridge of your nose and covers your complete nose and mouth. The Mirage Quattro cushion has a trick up its sleeve compared to other full-face cushions, this cushion seals at the chin to accommodate jaw movement during sleep. This makes the Mirage Quattro one of the best CPAP masks for mouth breathers since it will help them to maintain their mouth closed while sleeping. This mask is also a good choice for mouth breathers because it has vent holes and a built-in valve that allows you to keep breathing fresh air even if the airflow of your mask is blocked. The Mirage Quattro is great for someone whose sleeping position is on their back. This mask is great at withstanding higher pressure as well. The Mirage Quattro full-face cushion comes in 4 sizes: extra-small, small, medium, and large and has a cost of $99.00.
You will be on cloud 9 when using the Philips Dreamwear Full-Face CPAP mask. This mask has a similar cushion design to the Amara View, leaving the bridge of your nose uncovered. The Dreamwear mask is great for mouth breathers who are side sleepers because the hose attachment is on the top of the head allowing for more movement during sleep. The cushion design is also beneficial to mouth breathers since it covers your nostrils and your mouth. Since this is a full-face mask, the mask frame allows airflow to generate throughout the entire mask minimizing mask leaks. The open-field of vision this mask provides is perfect for someone who prefers to watch tv before bed and the headgear provides minimal contact on your face. The Philips Dreamwear cushion comes in 4 sizes: small, medium, medium wide, large and has a cost of $129.00.
Mouth breathing can exacerbate obstructive sleep apnea symptoms which is why you should spend some time picking out a CPAP mask that will be beneficial to you. Full-Face masks are extremely helpful for mouth breathers in general since they cover the nose and mouth but if you want to go with a nasal or nasal pillow mask, make sure you are able to keep your mouth closed with the help of a chinstrap. Some full-face masks that were not mentioned here but also deserve some consideration are Fisher & Paykel's Vitera full-face mask and ResMed's AirTouch F20 full-face mask which are great for mouth breathers and can withstand high-pressure settings. We hope we were able to make your search for a CPAP mask that is beneficial to mouth breathers easier. Don’t forget to visit Sleeplay for your CPAP needs!
Written by Karina Lima