CPAP and BiPAP Therapy
If you snore loudly and are usually sleepy during the day you may have sleep apnea—a lack of breathing while sleeping because the muscles of the throat relax excessively, thus blocking the flow of air.
Although sleep apnea cannot be cured, it can be treated through a CPAP continuous positive airway pressure. A mechanical device pushes air into the lungs through the mouth, the nose, or through ventilation tubes.
CPAP uses different types of masks, depending on the way the user breathes during sleep:
Masks should be replaced every year.
Some CPAP systems include humidifiers to increase the comfort of use. For example, these systems minimize condensation by compensating for any changes in the temperature of the room. Also, they maximize humidity if there is a leak and humidity is lost. This is important because without the humidifier the upper airways loose their natural moisture, causing pain or discomfort.
Some models include an Ambient Tracking device, which continuously senses changes in room temperature and alters the heater plate temperature accordingly to minimize condensation and maximize humidity. CPAP Filters are another important component as they ensure clean air.
People with obstructive sleep apnea that have trouble adapting to the conventional CPAP therapy may try the bi-level positive airway pressure (BiPAP)therapy.
BiPAP delivers air just as CPAP does, with the added feature of increasing pressure during inspiration. Once the inspiration flow stops, the BiPAP returns to the CPAP pressure level. BiPAP makes breathing even much easier and increases the comfort of the user.
Sleep apnea causes unrestful nights for many people. By using CPAP or BiPAP every night—for at least five hours—people with the condition can sleep better and enjoy their waking hours while avoiding the risk and complications of apneas—such as heart failure, heart disease, stroke, arrhythmia, and hypertension.
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