What is sleep apnea
Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder with the potential of becoming a serious health issue. If an individual has sleep apnea, it means that whilst they are asleep their breathing stops and starts repeatedly. There are three different types of sleep apnea including obstructive sleep apnea, central sleep apnea and complex sleep apnea.
Obstructive sleep apnea is the most common form, and it is caused by the throat muscles relaxing, obstructing the airways. Central sleep apnea is quite serious, and occurs due to the brain not sending necessary signals to the muscles in charge of regulating breathing. Complex sleep apnea is known as treatment-emergent central sleep apnea, and it involves an individual experiencing both obstructive and central sleep apnea.
If you are unsure whether you are experiencing sleep apnea, you should visit your doctor. Some common symptoms include; loud snoring, gasping for air whilst asleep, awakening with a dry mouth, headaches, irritability and fatigue.
What is a cpap machine
Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) machines have a primary use of treating people experiencing obstructive sleep apnea. It is the most commonly prescribed device for sleep apnea disorders. This machine works by sending a steady flow of oxygen into your airways- through your nose and mouth- as you sleep, in order to keep your airways open and breath coming and going normally. Individuals with obstructive sleep apnea are able to breathe as they regularly would with a sleep apnea machine, as nothing will be obstructing the flow of oxygen anymore. All CPAP machines come with the machine itself, a mask and a tube.
Benefits of a CPAP machine
Using a CPAP machine to treat your sleep apnea has multiple benefits. Among these benefits are the lack of snoring! Without snoring, you and your family will be able to have an undisturbed night’s sleep, and everyone will awake feeling more refreshed and alert.
Using our CPAP machines throughout the entire night will show positive results sooner than wearing it temporarily throughout the night. Results you will see include less interruptions in the user’s sleep, an improved ability to stay asleep, lower chance of a cardiovascular event, lower blood pressure and reduced fatigue!
Different types of machines
There are three different types of sleep apnea machines that you have the option of buying. This includes the traditional CPAP machine, the APAP machine, and BiPAP machine. The traditional CPAP machine is great for those who are after a steady air flow. An APAP machine (Auto-Titrating Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) adjusts throughout the night to meet the user’s needs as required. BiPAP (Bi-Level Positive Airway Pressure) machine has two settings; one that controls inhale pressure, and one set as a lower pressure for exhale.
Why choosing the right mask is important
It is super important to choose the right mask when purchasing a CPAP machine. If you do not choose the correct mask, you may not get the full benefits available from your machine.
In order to determine which mask is right for you, it is important to speak to your mask supplier. They will help determine which mask fits you the best. Getting the right size and style of mask is integral to receiving the full benefits. If your mask is not quite the right size for your face, there may be air leakage, meaning you will not be able to fully optimise the machine’s effects.
Mask options include Full Face, Nasal Pillow CPAP masks. The difference between these two types of mask is the level of facial coverage there will be.
Why it’s important to regularly clean it (and how to clean it)
If you notice that your machine is making louder noises than usual, it may be time to do a proper cleaning of your filters and mask. A routine clean is important if you’d like to keep your machine fully functional for as long as possible, and prevent any future blockages.
Each day it is important to empty your machine’s humidifier and rinse it through with water. Each week, your tubing, mask and headgear should be cleaned with a mild soap. And monthly, any disposable filters should be replaced. After cleaning your equipment, it is best to simply air dry the different elements by hanging it up.
Follow your doctor’s instructions, and CPAP supplier’s instructions
You can avoid many issues with your machine if you ensure you are following your supplier’s instructions on how to operate it properly. On top of this, in order to maximize the benefits you will receive by using your machine, it is important to follow your doctor’s orders. They will include how regularly you should use your machine, and how important it is, whereas the supplier will show you how to operate the machinery and provide you with equipment best suited to your needs; eg. face shape, sleeping habits.