Nasal Masks


Definition - What does Nasal Masks mean?

Nasal masks are distinctive masks that fit over the bridge of the nose down to the upper lip, feeding indirect airflow through the nasal cavity from a connecting hose via a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine to facilitate breathing cycles during sleep. Many individuals prefer nasal masks given the different style of fittings available that conform to the dimensions of a person’s face combined with higher pressure settings for moderating airflow.

WorkplaceTesting explains Nasal Masks

CPAP therapy is the standard intervention technique for alleviating obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) where individuals are prone to experience symptoms including excessive daytime sleepiness, chronic fatigue, cognitive impairment, and low morale, undercutting job performance. While a large percentage of the population recognizes sleep apnea as a detrimental health issue, many people fail to adhere to CPAP treatment where OSA carries etiological implications including cardiovascular disease, diabetes, hypertension (high blood pressure), and stroke. A durable medical equipment (DME) technician will determine the proper cushion material, fit, size, and style of a nasal mask that accommodates a patient’s sleep patterns and takes their comfort into consideration.

Although nasal masks distribute a more natural airflow to regulate breathing, patient concerns of skin irritation along the bridge of the nose or forehead can serve as detracting factors against the use of nasal masks. Moreover, nasal masks can pose as an obstacle for individuals with a tendency to breathe through their mouth unless a chin-strap application is used to stabilize the jaw. Nasal passage obstruction from allergies, colds, or maxillofacial defects (i.e., deviated septum) can pose challenges when selecting the appropriate CPAP mask.

After prescribing nasal mask therapy, a sleep technologist can cover the groundwork of patient compliance with CPAP treatment in terms of abiding with medical instructions highlighting its application. In the workplace, employees who stay consistent with CPAP treatment can improve their concentration, curb depression, and replenish energy, which can all lead to higher levels of productivity.

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