why and how to use cpap machine

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what is a cpap machine?

Certain conditions cause breathing problems in some people while sleeping. This respiratory distress can be managed using a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine.

CPAP helps in keeping the patient’s airways open to stimulate breathing by supplying oxygenated air through a tube and mask.

The CPAP machine has a motor that compresses and generates a constant stream of pressurized air from its air filter into flexible tubes. The tubes then deliver this air into the mask that is put around the user’s face. This air when breathed in opens up any blockages that might be there in the airways and helps your lungs to function optimally.

Depending on its type, a CPAP device may have different types of masks such as a full mask, nasal mask, or a nasal pillow mask.

who can use a cpap machine?

Known as one of the most effective sleep apnea devices, the CPAP machine has been traditionally used to treat people who have difficulties breathing while sleeping. Besides this condition that causes obstruction or airway collapse during sleep, some of the best CPAP machine uses are for people who experience breathing difficulties while sleeping due to conditions like:

  1. Obesity
  2. Muscular weakness or disorders
  3. Tonsillitis
  4. Hypothyroidism
  5. Tissue overgrowth in the airways
  6. Asthma
  7. Heart failure
  8. Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disorder
  9. Bacterial or viral infections of the respiratory system.

People suffering from any of the above-mentioned get benefitted from an auto CPAP machine from their symptoms such as:

  1. People with poor sleep patterns.
  2. Those who have a reduced oxygen intake.
  3. People who snore excessively while sleeping.
  4. People suffering from hypertension.
  5. Those who suffer from daytime drowsiness and fatigue due to lack of sleep.
  6. People who experience frequent mood swings.
  7. Those who have impaired cognition and memory function.

why use cpap?

An auto CPAP machine has been proven to be a very effective treatment for sleep-time breathing difficulties. Here are some great reasons for using this device:

  1. With CPAP oxygen levels of the user improve during the use of this machine. This improves their quality of sleep and prevents daytime fatigue and sleepiness.
  2. This machine reduces the risk of conditions such as heart diseases, diabetes, obesity, blood pressure, stroke, and hypertension.
  3. There are special benefits of CPAP for snoring, also known as upper airway resistance syndrome. CPAP therapy prevents severe UARS from developing into sleep apnea.
  4. People who use CPAP BiPAP machines have lower susceptibility to stress, anxiety, and depression.
  5. When you sleep better, you can enjoy a better quality of life and find time to pursue things that you enjoy. This also goes a long way in preventing falls, road accidents, and other injuries.
  6. CPAP therapy improves your cognitive functioning including focus, concentration, and creativity. This enhances your work productivity and helps better your interpersonal relationships.
  7. A CPAP machine helps you lead a healthier life. This not just adds years to your life but also helps you save monies that you would otherwise have spent on curing diseases occurring due to lack of sleep.

how to use cpap?

To gain the benefits of CPAP therapy, the first step is to invest in the best CPAP machine. This will ensure that you get the most reliable and credible therapy when needed.

This is how to use the CPAP machine:

  1. Read the product manual and instructions well to understand each part and its assembly.
  2. Once you have assembled all the parts and set the machine on a flat and dry surface, set up the machine filters.
  3. Now attach the CPAP hose and mask to the outlet of the machine or the humidifier, if you are using one.
  4. Set the pressure settings of the machine as per your prescription.
  5. To wear the mask, sit on the edge of your bed. Place the mask with the chin straps a little loose. Lay down and pull the straps to fit in snugly on your face. Check for leaks. You can also get a CPAP pillow to position your head better.
  6. Turn on the CPAP machine and adjust the pressure if required.
  7. Once the breathing therapy is over, remove the mask gently and switch off the machine.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of CPAP?

We often wonder about what are the side effects of using a CPAP machine. Well, some drawbacks usually arise from not using the machine appropriately. Fortunately, all of them can be fixed:

  1. One of the most common issues is that people take time in getting used to this therapy and take off the mask during sleep. This can be avoided by practicing wearing the mask during the daytime.
  2. You may experience nasal congestion or nosebleeds.
  3. Your eyes may feel irritated.
  4. You may get a dry mouth and feel redness in the area where the mask is placed.
  5. We often wonder if CPAP is bad for the lungs? Some people may experience irritation or burning sensations in the lungs due to the cold air inhaled from the mask. Using a humidifier can easily rectify this problem.

Here are some benefits of CPAP therapy:

  1. A common question that people ask is a CPAP machine good for COVID? Several studies say that CPAP therapy given in the early stages of COVID prevents respiratory distress and disease progression.
  2. CPAP therapy in the long run is a great way to prevent serious health conditions like diabetes, stroke, cardiac problems, hypertension, high blood pressure, etc.
  3. When you sleep well, you are less fatigued and more emotionally balanced.

what is the difference between cpap and bipap machines?

Another breath assistance machine that we often hear about is the BiPAP (Bilevel Positive Airway Pressure) machine.

While both CPAP and BiPAP machines work towards helping you breathe better, each of them has its purpose and benefits.

Here is decoding both the machines:

  1. Working: While a CPAP machine helps provide air to patients with obstructive sleep apnea by delivering a single pressure, a BiPAP machine delivers two pressures- inhale and exhale. The latter is beneficial for people with COPD and cardiopulmonary disorders.
  2. Pressure settings: CPAP machines deliver constant pressure between 4-20 cm H2O irrespective of whether the user is inhaling or exhaling. The BiPAP machine detects the user’s breathing patterns and delivers pressure between 4-25 cm H2O.
  3. Portability: While a CPAP machine is designed for travel, a BiPAP machine due to its extra sensors and components are for home or hospital use.
  4. Cost: There is a significant difference between BiPAP machine cost and CPAP machine cost. Since a BiPAP and its versions like the BiPAP Pro has more sophisticated settings and functioning and are heavier and larger, they are at least three-four times more expensive than a CPAP.

To conclude, a CPAP machine goes a long way in not just helping you manage your sleep apnea but also preventing the risk of serious health concerns. To gain the most from this therapy, use the machine properly, always keep it clean, and work with your doctor to keep a check on your symptoms.

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