When your breathing is disrupted during sleep, you have a condition called sleep apnea. According to Nancy Foldvary-Schaefer Director of Cleveland Clinic’s Sleep Disorders Center, many people are not aware that they suffer from sleep apnea. Although the sleep disorder affects at least 9% of women and 24% of men; 80% remain undiagnosed. Obstructive sleep apnea is common but it is a serious sleep disorder that causes you to stop breathing during sleep. If breathing stops for 5-10 minutes, you are a goner. A CPAP machine is your best option in the treatment of sleeping disorder.
A type of respiratory ventilation machine, CPAP also known as continuous positive airway pressure device is used primarily in the treatment of sleep apnea. The machine enlarges air pressure inside your throat so that your airway doesn’t give way when you breathe in. CPAP machine is small and lightweight that runs softly and rhythmically. Using CPAP will please your bed partner as he/she will sleep better too. Make it a habit to use the machine every night while you sleep.
A mask or other device is fitted over your nose or your both nose and mouth. There are straps to hold the mask in place while being worn. A tube links the mask to the motor of the machine that blows air into the tube. Other machines include a humidifier.
It is a common ailment but potentially a serious sleeping disorder that causes the sleeper to stop breathing or to breathe repeatedly shallow while asleep. The result is that inadequate air reaches the lungs. A mild pressure from CPAP can prevent your airway from collapsing or becoming blocked.
Types of sleep apnea are:
In an obstructive sleep apnea, airway of your throat collapses or is blocked during sleep. Each time you breaths, the air is squeezing past the blockage and making a noise that caused loud snoring. Your snoring bothers the rest of the people in the house. Even a mild pressure coming from CPAP is enough to prevent your airway from collapsing or becoming blocked.
Complications of sleep apnea include:
After the doctor prescribes you a CPAP, you will coordinate with someone from a home equipment provider or durable medical equipment (DME) to select a CPAP machine. Your doctor will assist you to make sure the settings that he or she prescribes for your CPAP machine are correct. He may even recommend an overnight sleep study to find if it is the correct settings for you. Your doctor will want to make sure the air pressure from the machine is just enough to keep your airway open while you sleep. There are many kinds of CPAP machines and masks. After trying the machine, tell your doctor if you don’t like it so he may suggest a different type that might work better for you.
Upsides always come with the downsides. Some patients encounter side-effects from their CPAP machine at some point of their use. The most common CPAP side-effects identified are mask or pressure-related. Claustrophobia is a common complaint while others develop nasal congestion or experience rhinitis or a runny nose. Although these side effects lessen the perfection of the machine, serious side-effects are very uncommon. Research proved that CPAP side-effects are rarely the reason why patients stop using CPAP.
Here are simple tips you can do to minimize side-effects of CPAP:
Tip # 1 – Be sure that your mask is appropriately fitted. A too large or too small mask will feel uncomfortable.
Tip # 2 – Nasal conditions often respond when the air of CPAP humidification is heated. Although CPAP machines have heated humidifiers, many patients prefer not to use them.
Tip # 3 – Mask must not be tight when worn. This common error causes mask discomfort and even damage to your skin. It is better to change to another mask in case there is an air leak.
Tip # 4 – Time and patience are keys to success. After a while, you will get use to your CPAP that would mean you are relieved of sleep apnea and enjoy normal sleep.
Tip # 5 – A good relationship between you, your doctor and CPAP supplier will guarantee that you will have the best fit and device. To overcome some common CPAP problems, make the necessary adjustments. It may take several months to find the correct settings for you and to get adapted to your mask.
Using a CPAP device to treat your malady can be a frustrating experience especially when you have not yet gotten used to it. It needs time to make the adjustment but it is important that you stick to it. Only by using CPAP machine can you get treatment from your sleep apnea-related complications, such heart disorders and every day fatigue. By working with medical provider and CPAP supplier, you will surely get the best fit and device. In case you are feeling uncomfortable, try making adjustments to avoid experiencing other CPAP problems. It may take several months to find the correct settings for you and to adapt to the mask.
If one CPAP device or mark does not work for you, you have other options. There are varied types and styles to choose from. One advantage is that CPAP masks are easily adjustable; you will be more comfortable using them with the right adjustment. With time and patience, a CPAP machine can positively affect your quality of life and health.