FAQs: how often should my patients replace their masks?
To maintain good quality therapy and provide your patients with a comfortable experience, it's important that their mask and components are replaced regularly. We've provided answers to some commonly asked questions below. Our mask user guides also provide information on replacement.
Why and how often should my patients replace their CPAP mask cushion?
Like any piece of clothing or accessory, mask cushions become worn out over time. An old mask is more likely to leak, while old headgear may lose its elasticity, leading to over-tightening and discomfort. Using a mask that's in good condition will help your patient to enjoy comfortable, effective therapy every night.
The life of a mask cushion depends on various factors, such as how often your patient wears it, skin type (dry, oily, etc.), and how often the mask gets cleaned.
Because the mask replacement schedule is unique to each patient and type of mask, we highly recommend that patients inspect their mask according to the cleaning and maintenance routine outlined in the user guide supplied with the mask. It contains guidelines to help you and your patient to inspect, assess and replace the different mask components.
It's easy to download the user guides for ResMed masks. Choose the mask from the devices listed here, click on the 'Support' button on that page, then go to the 'Download' section.
How can I tell that it's time for a replacement?
If any part of the system shows signs of deterioration (cracking, crazing, discolouration, tears, cushion damage, etc.), that component should be discarded and replaced.
If your patient wears a full face mask (e.g. AirFit™ F10, Quattro™ Air) and the valve is damaged, distorted or torn, the elbow should be replaced. The mask should not be worn if the valve is damaged as it will not be able to perform its safety function.
In general, it might be time for your patient to replace the mask or some of its component parts if:
- Your patient has to tighten the straps very frequently
- The mask feels stiff, instead of soft and springy
- Your patient feels the treatment may be less effective than usual
- The mask cushion is slippery even after it's been cleaned
- The mask cushion is no longer clear and transparent
- The mask cushion and frame show signs of wear, stiffness, cracks or breaks
Because the replacement schedule is specific to each mask and each patient, we highly recommend reading the mask user guide for detailed information.
How should my patients take care of their masks? Is there anything they can do to extend their lifespan?
Regular cleaning will help to maintain a mask in good condition. Dirt, oils and residues from the patient's skin and surroundings can build up on the mask if they are not removed daily. As well as irritating your patient's skin, these can damage the materials used to make the mask. The mask user guide provides full instructions on cleaning, and you can also read FAQs about mask cleaning here.
Your patients should keep their mask and components out of direct sunlight. Exposing any part of the system or tubing to direct sunlight could damage the materials and result in deterioration.
Your patients should keep their mask out of reach of pets and children to avoid accidental damage caused during play. Claws, teeth and other sharp objects can easily create small tears or pinholes that result in a leak.
Is it possible to buy replacement component parts?
Yes. All ResMed mask components, including cushions and new mask systems, can be purchased separately.
It's easy to download mask user guides. Choose a mask from the devices listed here, click on the 'Support' button on that page, then go to the 'Download' section.