Once you have been diagnosed with sleep apnea, there is a probability that your sleep specialist may recommend a sleep apnea machine as a form of remedy.
One of the most popular sleep apnea machines is the CPAP. CPAP is an abbreviation that stands for Continuous Positive Airway Pressure. This machine helps obstructive sleep apnea patients to continue breathing regularly and normally so that they can wake up feeling renewed and refreshed.
How sleep machines work
Sleep apnea is somewhat a mechanical problem. Once you sleep, your tongue falls backward toward your soft palate. Your uvula and soft palate fall against the back of your throat, thus obstructing your airway. Obviously, in such a case, even if you expand your breathing muscles to breathe, no air flows into your lungs.
A sleep apnea machine, supplies steady and constant pressurized air supply to your lungs. This incessant air supply holds your air passage open. The machine is fitted with a pump which controls airflow, a hose/tube that transports the air from the sleep apnea machine and a mask which fits over your mouth, nose or both.
Types of CPAP masks
There are 3 designs of CPAP masks available:
- A full mask, that fits over your mouth and nose
- A nasal mask which covers your nose
- A “nasal pillow mask” which goes right under your nose
You can get variations of these masks; for instance, full masks which cover your nose and mouth as well as your eyes, and nose masks with prongs which fit into your nose. You may want to try a few variations before settling on one that is effective and comfortable. That said; any system is good, as long as it supplies air at a steady pressure and you find it comfy enough to use every night.
It may take time for some people to adjust to using a sleep apnea machine, particularly if they never slept with something on their face. However, the good thing is that, with time and of course some adjustments, they ultimately find the machine comfortable to wear.
Other people may have a lot of worries about using sleep apnea machines. For instance, will the air dry out their mouth and nose? Will the mask leak? Will they have problems falling asleep with the mask on? Luckily, if one mask or device does not work for you perfectly, there are lots of other options. However, most sleep apnea machines on the market are modifiable to make them more comfy for the user.
Selecting a sleep apnea machine can seem overwhelming; however, with the right guidance from an experienced sleep specialist, you can be guaranteed a comfortable and effective machine for a good night’s sleep.