What is CPAP?
CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) is the gold-standard and most common therapy for adult patients who suffer from moderate to severe obstructive sleep apnea. These patients will experience significant benefits from CPAP therapy including:
- Reduction in high blood pressure and heart disease
- Reduced risk of stroke
- Improved insulin sensitivity in people who suffer from type 2 diabetes
- Reduced risk of being in a motor vehicle accident
- Restores normal sleep patterns and reduce daytime fatigue
- Improves concentration and mental alertness
- Increases quality of life
The machine is a small device that uses mild air pressure to keep the airways open during sleep.
Parts of a CPAP Machine:
- Mask: fits over your nose or nose and mouth. Straps keep the mask in place while you sleep
- Hose (heated/non-heated): tube that connects the mask to the machine motor and carries positive air pressure to the mask
- Motor: blows air into the hose
A CPAP machine uses a mask that fits over your mouth and nose, or just over your nose. The machine gently blows air into your throat. The pressure from the air helps keep your airway open while you sleep. Treating sleep apnea may help you stop snoring. But not snoring doesn’t mean that you no longer have sleep apnea or can stop using CPAP. Your sleep apnea will return if you stop using your CPAP machine or don’t use it correctly. Usually, a technician will come to your home to bring the CPAP equipment. The technician will set up the CPAP machine and adjust it based on your doctor’s prescription. After the initial setup, you may need to have the CPAP adjusted from time to time for the best results.
CPAP treatment may cause side effects in some people. These side effects may include:
- Dry or stuffy nose
- Irritated skin on your face
- Dry mouth
- Stomach bloating and discomfort
If you are experiencing side effects or difficulty with your CPAP machine, please contact your team at RHS and we will work with you to correct the issue. We are here to provide industry-leading quality of care and support to our patients on CPAP therapy because OSA will return if the machine is not used or is used incorrectly.