If you have been diagnosed with sleep apnea and your doctor has recommended using a CPAP machine as a form of treatment, you’re in the right place. A CPAP treatment is a little more unusual than, let’s say popping a pill, so you may be concerned about what it is, how it works and how it can help you.
What is a CPAP Machine?
A CPAP machine is a small box with a motorized fan inside. This fan draws air from the room, pressurizes it and delivers it at a setting prescribed to your specific needs. A filter located in the air intake section of the machine eliminates the harbouring of dust, smoke, and other impurities in the air. This filter needs to be replaced as needed. Another important part of the CPAP machine is the humidification chamber that’s found in the box. This is where water is warmed to humidify the pressurized air before it is delivered. Although using humidification is optional, it brings relief for patients who live in dry or arid climates or patients who tend to wake up with a dry mouth, nasal passages or throat.
What connects the box to the mask is a hose which is attached to the CPAP device. The hose is actually flexible, lightweight tubing that is typically heated to reduce any condensation that might collect inside it while the humidifier is in use. It’s long enough to for you to be able to freely move when sleeping. Then, there is the mask. Experts say that the success of CPAP therapy is often linked to how comfortable and well-fitting the mask is. CPAP masks come in a variety of sizes and shapes to suit different people’s facial landscapes.
Compact and easy to fit on a standard nightstand, CPAP machines are easy to keep clean. With regular care and maintenance, your CPAP machine should last you a long time.
Where can you buy a CPAP machine?
You can buy a CPAP machine online or at a local specialized store. If you set out to buy a CPAP machine online, you will come across a range of different models and prices, which most of the time are more affordable than those in brick-and-mortar stores. It is important to know that some machines are sold in a package while others require an additional purchase of accessories, such as a humidifier and a face mask. Of course, this will increase the price of the machine and you will also have to spend more time looking for the matching parts. So, if possible, try to choose a machine that includes everything you need to start your therapy as soon as the product is delivered to your home.
How does a CPAP machine help you sleep?
By helping to keep your airway firm and open, the pressurized air that the machine produces provides the support necessary for you to breathe freely and without obstructions. The CPAP machine will improve your sleep, and therefore your health almost immediately. Once you start with the treatment, you’ll stop snoring, you won’t feel sleepy during the day and you will spot a noticeable improvement in your focus and attention. There are also other benefits that are less visible but just as important. Managing your sleep apnea can help prevent or reverse serious, long-term health conditions like chronic high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease and risk of stroke.
How to choose a CPAP machine?
Choosing the right machine is fairly straightforward. Generally speaking, there are three types of CPAP machines: standard, auto and bi-level. Each next model than the standard one has more comfort features and sophisticated technology. Although the technology of standard CPAP machines has improved over the years, these machines generally provide a ramp and constant pressure to alleviate sleep apnea. Auto CPAP machines have become increasingly popular due to their abilities to automatically increase and decrease pressure-flow based on your needs. By considering the machine’s technology, features and compliance data, you should be able to get a model that is the right fit for your needs.
Buying from a reputable retailer is just as important as finding the right machine. Some online stores offer rather cheap CPAP machines. However, remember that when you buy a CPAP machine, you will need replaceable parts and maintenance service over time. This means that choosing a seller that has a good reputation for providing great customer service will prevent you from headaches in the future. A reliable retailer should be willing to help you choose your machine or help you with your warranty. Keep in mind that this will be an ongoing relationship, so make sure the vendor you choose is consistent, courteous and knowledgeable.