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CPAP Therapy & Solutions

What is a CPAP Machine? How Can It Improve My Health?

“What is a CPAP machine?” If you have been diagnosed with a sleep disorder, your doctor may have prescribed a CPAP machine to help treat your condition. Using such a device might sound intimidating, but implementing it in your night routine can help you feel a lot better, and the results are often life-changing.

What is a CPAP Machine? Do They Work?

CPAP is an acronym for continuous positive airway pressure, and it is a therapy delivered through a machine. CPAP machines help individuals with obstructive sleep apnea breathe easier while asleep.

CPAP machines use a compressor to deliver a constant flow of pressurized air into a flexible tube that passes through an air filter. The tube sends a steady flow of purified air to the patient’s nose and mouth through a nasal mask or a face mask, depending on the patient’s preference.

Obstructive sleep apnea is a dangerous sleeping disorder characterized by repetitive lapses in breathing. CPAPs are highly effective because the pressure machine uses the air stream to push against blockage so that the airways can get all the oxygen it needs.

How Can CPAP Therapy Improve Your Overall Health?

Initially, sleeping with a CPAP may not be comfortable, but you’ll adjust to using the device over time. You’ll find that the benefits of CPAP therapy greatly outweigh the adjustment period. In addition, using your CPAP machine as directed by your doctor can reverse some of the severe health consequences caused by sleep apnea.

Since it keeps your airways open, it eliminates or tremendously reduces snoring which will help you and your partner sleep better at night. Unfortunately, untreated obstructive sleep apnea can increase your chances of developing Type 2 diabetes since the disorder causes glucose intolerance and insulin resistance. However, regular CPAP use can significantly improve insulin sensitivity.

Continuous positive airway pressure is the most effective nonsurgical treatment for sleep apnea. Research shows that this treatment significantly reduces daytime sleepiness in moderate to severe sleep apnea individuals. Studies reveal that patients that use their CPAP machine for about seven or more hours a day experience fewer heart issues; it lowers their blood pressure and even helps improve depression.

Choosing the Right CPAP Mask Based on Your Sleeping Position

We all have our favorite go-to-sleeping position. While some of us may prefer to sleep in the fetal position, others are more comfortable lying on their back or stomachs. Did you know that your sleeping position can also contribute to how well CPAP therapy helps your sleep apnea? 

When you begin CPAP therapy, you’ll need to choose a suitable mask based on your sleeping position. For example, although sleeping on your back is never recommended when you have obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) because your tongue and the soft tissue can relax and block the airways, the right mask combats this issue.

For instance, sleeping on your back may be more comfortable if your doctor prescribed a high airway pressure level. CPAP masks that cover your face ensure that you get the oxygen you need. Full face masks have a bulkier design, but it’s easier to adjust to the CPAP pressure level.

You may find it more comfortable with a nasal mask if you are a side sleeper. Since it has a minimal design, you’ll never have to worry about shifting out of place as your head presses into your pillow, reducing air leakage.

Seek Sound Medical Advice Today

If you’re still wondering “what is a CPAP” and whether it’s the proper treatment solution for you, consider obtaining medical advice from a medical team you can trust. Here at Healthy Sleep Midwest, we believe in taking a proactive approach to treating and managing sleep disorders. So call us today at 816-753-3737 to book an appointment.