For mouth breathers, finding a CPAP Mask that works for your needs can be a daunting task. Below we discuss the best CPAP Masks for those who breathe through their mouths while sleeping, along with details on the causes of mouth breathing and the benefits of masks that accommodate this specific need.
Full Face Masks for Mouth Breathers
You can improve your CPAP therapy by switching to a full face CPAP mask.
A full face mask fits a larger space from the top of the bridge of your nose to underneath your lower lip. It creates a seal over both your nose and mouth. A CPAP mask and mouth breathing work well together since it doesn’t reduce pressure delivery when the patient breathes from their mouth.
Generally, a full face mask is recommended for people who breathe through their mouth while they sleep and those who have colds with stuffy noses.
Benefits of Full Face CPAP Masks for Mouth Breathers
While full face masks are larger than nasal pillows or nasal masks, they’re comfortable for many people because it allows them to breathe through their mouth while not reducing pressure delivery. That’s also why people who require a higher pressure setting do best with full face masks.
Other important benefits of full face masks for mouth breathers are:
- Well-suited for people with a deviated nasal septum or high arched soft palate.
- Ideal as the best CPAP mask for mouth breathers.
- Fitting for people with claustrophobia.
- Optimal for high-pressure settings because of its wider surface area which is less direct to the patient and makes the pressure more tolerable.
- Ideal for people who sleep on their back.
- Ideal for CPAP users who use pressure over 17cm H2.
- Doesn’t strain the nasal passages during cold seasons.
- Good for individuals whose jaw drops while they’re sleeping.
- Excellent for individuals suffering from dry mouth also tend to do well with full face masks since the humidified air helps to keep their nasal and oral passages moist.
In addition, individuals who breathe out of their mouth also benefit with less nasal cavity irritation since the full face mask delivers air to both the nose and mouth.
Lastly, full face masks usually include supportive pieces you fit to your cheeks and forehead to ensure you have a good seal.
Challenges of Full Face Mask
There are some inherent challenges with full face masks, including they:
- Fit a larger surface area making a good seal harder.
- Don’t work well with facial hair.
- Require a higher CPAP pressure because of how it delivers air.
- Can cause you to swallow air.
- Can increase the risk of aspiration.
If you address these challenges, then a full face CPAP mask may be the best option for you.
Best Full Face CPAP Mask for Mouth Breathing
CPAP therapy is the gold standard for sleep apnea treatment. Breathing through your nose is the more optimal and natural way of inhaling air. There are numerous disadvantages to mouth breathing. However, if you do breathe through your mouth when you sleep, you may benefit the most with your CPAP therapy by using a full face mask.
A significant reason why some individuals aren’t compliant and struggle with their CPAP therapy is due to the mask they’re using. To ensure you can continue successfully with your CPAP therapy and stay compliant, it’s important you select the right mask that can accommodate your specific needs — in this case breathing through your mouth.
Here at CPAP.com, we have more than 40 CPAP masks for mouth breathing and all now come with a 30-day risk-free trial. You can shop by rating, price, name and top sellers. You can also read reviews of each CPAP mask for mouth breathers to help you decide on the optimal mask for you.
Are You a Mouth Breather?
If so, you are not alone. Also referred to as xerostomia, mouth breathing occurs for a variety of reasons. Things like a cold, nasal congestion, allergies or sinus problems and other environmentally –related reasons are usually temporary and resolve after a small period of time.
When it comes to chronic mouth breathing, however, this is not a temporary thing and won’t resolve on its own. If chronic mouth-breathing is caused by facial bone structures or a deviated septum, it’s best you receive treatment so you can start breathing from your nose.
It’s simple to dismiss mouth-breathing as an issue with a simple solution — when you notice you’re mouth-breathing, you simply start to breathe through your nose instead. But, individuals with sleep apnea can’t just start breathing from their nose because their mouth-breathing occurs when they’re sleeping and unconscious.
Mouth breathing can cause some problems too, including:
- Gasping for air and snoring while sleeping
- Dry mouth and bad breath
- Chronic fatigue
- Brain fog
- Throat problems
- Teeth grinding, jaw pain and other dental problems
Also, those with untreated sleep apnea who breathe from the mouth don’t get quality sleep. The disruption in their sleep during the night can lead to many cognitive, physical and behavioral issues that can affect their quality of life significantly.
Sinuses produce some of the nitric oxides in your body during nose breathing. This nitric oxide helps to:
- Kill bacteria
- Increase your lungs’ ability to absorb oxygen
- Kills germs and viruses
- Regulates blood pressure
- Improves the immune system
- Reduces inflammation
- Enhances learning and memory
When you breathe through your mouth, you eliminate a lot of the nitric oxide that helps you thrive. The problem with mouth breathing and CPAP therapy is the air rushes out of your mouth, reducing the effectiveness of CPAP therapy and fragments your sleep. If you use a nasal mask or nasal pillows mask and breathe through your mouth, you’re reducing the amount of pressurized air you require since, with these masks, the air is being delivered through your nasal passages.
This is why it’s super important to use the right CPAP Mask if you breathe through your mouth while sleeping. Try a full face CPAP Mask today and better treat your CPAP therapy!
David Repasky has been using CPAP treatment since 2017 and has first-hand experience with what it’s like to live with Sleep Apnea. He brings the patient’s perspective to the CPAP.com blog and has received formal training in CPAP machines, masks, and equipment.