The health and productivity of an individual depend to some extent on sleep quality. Some people find that they often wake up in the middle of the night, gasping for breath, and find it difficult to go back to sleep. The doctors they consult may tell them that they are suffering from sleep apnea, and may have to use Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) machines so that they can sleep properly at night. Since most people have not used a CPAP Machine earlier, they would like to find out how CPAP Machines can help in treating sleep apnea, helping them to sleep well at night.
Sleep apnea at night
While sleeping at night, the muscles of the throat and tongue will relax. These relaxed muscles will sometimes block the airway or windpipe due to which the person will wake up at night gasping for breath due to sleep apnea. In some cases, the person may not realize that his sleep was interrupted but in other cases, he may find it difficult to go back to sleep. Waking up repeatedly at night may affect sleep quality, and the person may feel tired the next day. Additionally sleep apnea has been linked with various other health problems like high blood pressure heart disease, diabetes, and stroke.
CPAP machines have been designed so that a person using the machine can get sound sleep at night. A CPAP machine provides pressurized air through a mask so that the airway/windpipe always remains open while the person using the machine is sleeping, and he does not face any problem breathing. The CPAP machines use the air in the room, filter it to remove any debris, increase the pressure and deliver the air to the user through the tube and mask which is attached to the nose, mouth or both. Due to the higher pressure of the air which is being delivered, the airway does not collapse at night, so the breathing of the CPAP machine user is not interrupted while sleeping.
Types of machines
There are a wide variety of CPAP machines that vary in their specifications and pressure levels. Usually, the doctor treating the sleep apnea will specify the ideal pressure setting for the CPAP machine, which usually varies from 4 water pressure (CWP) to 25 CWP. Auto CPAP machines will automatically adjust the pressure of the air, according to the user’s requirement. Some CPAP machines adjust the air pressure depending on whether the user is inhaling or exhaling. Depending on his convenience, the user can choose to use a nasal pillow mask covering only the nostrils, a nasal mask covering the nose or a full mask that covers both the mouth and nose with the CPAP machine he chooses.
Using a CPAP machine
Users who are interested in purchasing a CPAP machine should be aware that it will often take some time, for the user to adjust to using the machine. Initially, some users find it difficult to sleep with the mask, have a dry mouth, have nosebleeds, and have skin problems. However, most of these health problems will reduce after some time, especially if the CPAP machine is well-maintained and cleaned regularly.