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What is CPAP therapy?
A CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) machine is used to treat the sleep disorder Obstructive Sleep Apnoea (OSA). It is the most widely used treatment option, consisting of a connecting mask to provide a consistent flow of pressurised air to the user’s mouth, nose or both. The airway prevents breathing pauses to ensure that quality restorative sleep is attained.
For extra comfort, a humidifier water chamber can be added, or, for some machines, a humidifier is included. The chamber adds moisture and warmth to therapy, helping to prevent dryness, congestion and other discomforts.
At what level of Sleep Apnoea do you need a CPAP machine?
If you have OSA confirmed, a CPAP machine is the most effective treatment, although alternative options exist for lower severities.
Do you need a fixed-pressure or automatic CPAP machine?
There are two types of CPAP machines, fixed-pressure and automatic. Fixed-pressure machines stay at one pressure setting, which should be provided by your sleep clinic, doctor or included in your sleep test results. This setting is calculated for your requirements based on several factors.
Automatic machines are for sufferers who do not have a specific air pressure requirement (most do not). Auto machines have a range of sensors that allow them to calculate the correct air pressure. It can detect when you are about to stop breathing and raises the air pressure accordingly. Once the danger has passed, it will drop the air pressure down again. This means, on average, you will get less pressurised air throughout the night than you would with a fixed-pressure machine. Many people find automatic CPAP machine therapy to be more comfortable and effective.
Need help choosing a CPAP machine?
Choosing a device may look like a minefield, particularly if you have only just been diagnosed with Sleep Apnoea. However, once you know what to look for, it is very simple to find the right machine for you. Contact us via phone or email, and we’ll be more than happy to help you get the right machine for you. Note that CPAP masks are always sold separately – but all masks we offer are compatible with all machines, so you can choose any suitable combination.
CPAP Machines FAQs
A BiPAP machine, short for “Bilevel Positive Airway Pressure,” is a medical device that assists individuals with breathing difficulties, especially those suffering from Sleep Apnoea or other respiratory conditions. It is a type of non-invasive ventilation that helps maintain an open airway and improves breathing during sleep or rest.
The BiPAP machine delivers two distinct levels of airway pressure: a higher pressure during inhalation (inspiratory positive airway pressure, IPAP) and a lower pressure during exhalation (expiratory positive airway pressure, EPAP). This pressure variation helps individuals breathe more easily by providing additional support during inhalation and preventing airway collapse during exhalation.
To use a CPAP machine, you must have Sleep Apnoea confirmed; you can do this by taking a home sleep test or PSG. Home sleep tests are a quicker and more convenient way of determining Sleep Apnoea as you can complete it in your own time without taking any time off work. You can find out more about our In-Home Sleep Test here.
Adjusting to CPAP therapy can take a few weeks; it shouldn’t be uncomfortable, although common issues can be resolved easily. It can take time to get used to a CPAP machine, but once you start to experience the life-changing aspect, your confidence and compliance will increase. CPAP is used by millions of people worldwide and is known as the gold standard treatment for Sleep Apnoea.
Snoring is a symptom of Sleep Apnoea; if you have the condition confirmed, using a CPAP machine can stop snoring associated with the condition as it keeps your airway free of blockages.
If you are recommended to use a CPAP machine, you should use it all night. Removing your mask and pausing your therapy can make the symptoms return and Apnoea events increase.
Keeping on track with your therapy ensures your Sleep Apnoea is treated, allowing you to wake up feeling refreshed from restorative sleep.
It takes time to adjust to using a CPAP machine, and many people don’t feel the benefits until they have used the machine for a few weeks. If you have been using CPAP therapy for a long time and keep waking up tired, there may be an air leak due to an ill-fitting mask, preventing you from receiving effective airway pressure.