DreamWear FitPack Nasal CPAP Mask

My new CPAP mask has arrived. It is one of a very different type that I am trying – the DreamWear FitPack Nasal Mask

I’ve recently been having skin problems, particularly on my forehead, where my normal CPAP mask has a silicon pad to support the mask fit. So I wanted to try something totally different.

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.]

4 Comments

  1. chris
    chris
    July 15, 2017

    10 minutes later… I was right, the Medium is a better fit, although the Medium Wide will be good to keep as a spare.

    Later, I will explore eBay with regard to selling the unused (and unwanted) Small and Large cushions. There must be a market, I reckon.

    While going through the bag containing the kit, I found another item which is on the spares list – wraps, to fit – with velcro – around the lower arms of the mask, to cover the silicon with soft cloth. Although I didn’t see this is an immediate issue, considering my experience with prolonged contact on my forehead, that seems a good idea!

  2. chris
    chris
    July 15, 2017

    And of course I carefully fitted the wraps, smoothed them out, and seal the velcro well to keep them in place; only to find I’d wrapped them around the top arms of the mask, which go over my head.

    Sometimes these masks can turn you around. Many a time I have replaced mask’s headgear, only to find it is back to front or upside down!

    Fitted properly, the wraps make the mask very comfortable indeed; and they can be (carefully) hand washed.

  3. chris
    chris
    July 15, 2017

    For those who do not know, a cushion mask is one that has one or two cushions made of soft silicon plastic. When not in use, these cushions are open to the air, so are flat and floppy. When fitted in place, around the nose (for nasal masks) or face (full-face masks), the air from the CPAP inflates the cushion and it seals around the nose/face.

    (The original masks had only one such layer, more commonly now there are two, one inside the other, with the inner cushion being firmer.)

    A pillow mask looks very much like the mask pictured above, but rather than having a cushion that seals against your skin, they have protruding pieces that go up each nostril. For folk who get on with pillows, they represent a good and comfortable seal. But not everybody gets on with them – including me.

  4. chris
    chris
    August 22, 2017

    Mid-August now, and I am still happily using the mask. It hasn’t even occurred to me to switch back to my old mask.

    As mentioned earlier, it is easy to pull on and off, even in the dark, and I have been getting pretty good quality sleep with it.

    It has also proved easier to keep clean than a conventional mask, as there are far fewer places of contact with skin. The cloth wraps I wash out by hand once a week and dry quickly,

    So a resounding success.

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