What are the Parts of My CPAP Equipment?

Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machines are the proven most effective way of treating obstructive sleep apnea (OSA).  With all of the different options, though, it can get confusing what all of these different parts due, so we’ll try to walk you through some of the basics.  

The most obvious part of your CPAP equipment setup is the machine itself.  These machines come in a variety of types.  All of these machines have the purpose of delivering pressurized air to your airway in order to prevent the instance of apneas, where your throat closes and you stop breathing during sleep.  CPAP machines deliver one pressure while BIPAP and APAP have multiple pressure settings that can help those with more severe OSA.  You can read more about these machine types here.  Machines also contain filters.  These small, usually white pads fit into your machine and filter the air intake to ensure cleaner therapy.  They need to be changed in order to ensure they are doing their job to eliminate particles that could cause you irritation.

Your machine delivers air through a series of tubing.  The tubing attaches at one end to your machine, and at the other on your mask.  Masks fit over your nose, mouth, or both and form a tight seal to ensure you get your prescribed therapy pressure.  Like machines, there are a few different types of masks to choose from.  Full face masks are triangular in shape and fit over your nose and mouth.  They’re a great option for people who breathe from both their nose and mouth while sleeping.  Nasal masks are a smaller triangle that fit only over your nose.  Even smaller are nasal pillow masks that fit on your nostrils.  Each of these masks is fully effective at delivering CPAP therapy, but everyone has their own preferences about which works best for them.  You can read more about which mask might work best for you here.

Your mask is held on by a set of headgear.  The headgear clips onto your mask and then fits around the head to hold it firmly in place even if you toss and turn.  Headgear is often adjustable, so find a comfortable fit that’s snug, but not too tight.  You also may choose to use a chin strap if using a nasal or nasal pillow mask.  These will help keep your mouth closed while resting in order to prevent air leakage.

Final Thoughts

Of course, the above outline is not a complete guide to complex CPAP equipment, but hopefully you now have a better idea of the basics. Of course, it is best to speak with your doctor to determine what is best for your individual needs.

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If you have any needs, concerns, or questions, visit our main website at http://www.cpapplus.com/

We would love to hear your comments or questions.

What are the Different Types of CPAP Machines?

Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP)

AirSense 10 CPAP Machine

CPAP machines are the most basic air pressure machine used to treat your sleep apnea.  Like all other machines this post will cover, this therapy works by delivering pressurized air through your airway in order to keep it open while you sleep.  This helps to eliminate the instances of apneas, where your airway closes and you actually stop breathing.  CPAP machines have one pressure setting, prescribed by your doctor, that the machine will run on throughout the night.

Bi-Level Positive Airway Pressure (BiPAP)

Respironics PR System One BiPAP Machine

BiPAP machines are considered a step up from traditional CPAP machines.  They are able to toggle between two separate pressure settings in order to provide more comfort for the user.  Typically, these pressure settings are set to an inhalation pressure and an exhalation pressure, offering a higher and lower setting respectively.  Many users report that they are more comfortable with this type of machine because it offers an easier time exhaling, making them more comfortable.

Auto-adjusting CPAP (APAP)

dreamstationAPAP machines are the most sophisticated form of CPAP treatment and are often reserved for patients with severe sleep apnea.  Unlike CPAP and BiPAP machines, these machines are able to automatically register the amount of pressure needed to keep your airway open, even adjusting breath by breath if necessary.  Because of this ability, these machines are even capable of adjusting your pressure based on your sleeping position, any weight gain or loss, or things like alcohol consumption that could effect how you are breathing.  

Final Thoughts

Of course, the above outline is not an exhaustive outline of the different machines, but hopefully you now have a better idea of what might work best for you. Of course, it is best to speak with your doctor to determine what is best for your individual needs.

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If you have any needs, concerns, or questions, visit our main website at http://www.cpapplus.com/

We would love to hear your comments or questions.

What are Some Features of APAP Machines?

Auto-adjusting positive airway pressure (APAP) machines are all the rage lately.  Unlike a traditional CPAP machine which is set on only one pressure, APAP machines are able to automatically adjust to the pressure required to keep your airway open yet keep you comfortable.  These machines are a great option for patients who find their pressure changes throughout the night as they can adjust even between breaths; your doctor can let you know if an APAP machine might work best for you.  

There are a number of new AutoPAPs available on the market.  One of the most popular is the DreamStation Auto PAP by Respironics.  This top of the line machine adjusts to your required pressure flawlessly and even has A-Flex pressure relief that helps to reduce discomfort while exhaling.  Nowadays you can even hook up your machine to your smartphone via bluetooth, and the Respironics DreamStation app will sync automatically so you can share your therapy data with your doctor easily.  The modern design of this machine make it ideal to fit into your decor and lifestyle.  Many users of the DreamStation compliment the sleek design, stating that it could easily pass as a clock or music player on your bedside table.  All of these great features make the DreamStation a great option to treat your obstructive sleep apnea.

Final Thoughts

Of course, the above outline is not an exhaustive resource of all APAP machines, but hopefully you now have a better idea of the multitude of machines there are to choose from. Of course, it is best to speak with your doctor to determine what is best for your individual needs.

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If you have any needs, concerns, or questions, visit our main website at http://www.cpapplus.com/

We would love to hear your comments or questions.

Will an APAP Machine Work Best for You?

There are a few different kinds of machines available for those undergoing continuous positive air pressure (CPAP) therapy.  One of the most popular options is an Automatic Positive Airway Pressure (APAP) machine.  These machines have recently become one of the favorites for treating obstructive apnea and are a great non invasive treatment.

APAP machines work by delivering pressurized air to your airway with the help of a mask.  This pressurized air helps to keep your airway open and prevents the instance of apneas.  These apneas, when your airway collapses, actually prevent you from breathing normally and can cause you to wake up, leaving you tired and groggy the next day.  Unlike other CPAP machines, auto machines are able to adjust their therapy pressure with each breath.

This auto adjustment is able to account for a variety of patient factors.  For instance, some machines are unable to deliver effective therapy depending on your sleeping position.  APAP machines, however, are able to sense any drop in pressure and adjust to a higher setting to continue working as effectively as possible.  APAP machines can also account for factors such as patient weight, alcohol consumption, or any other factor that may have an effect on the appropriate amount of therapy pressure.  APAP machines are a good option for people who have not found effective treatment with a traditional CPAP machine.  These machines are also a good option for those suffering from more severe sleep apnea.

Final Thoughts

Of course, the above outline is not an exhaustive resource, but hopefully you now have a better understanding of Automatic Positive Airway Pressure machines. They are a great machine to look into, but it is best to speak with your doctor to determine what is best for your individual needs.

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If you have any needs, concerns, or questions, visit our main website at http://www.cpapplus.com/

We would love to hear your comments or questions.

The Basics of CPAP Therapy

When you’ve been diagnosed with Obstructive Sleep Apnea, it might be a little overwhelming seeing the huge amount of choices you have when it comes to your CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) therapy.  When you break it down, though, it’s really not too bad once you have a grasp of the necessary equipment.

Your Machine

ICON Auto Machine
ICON Auto Machine

Your machine is really the core of your CPAP therapy, doing the bulk of the work to help keep your airway open as you rest.  Most machines run off of a traditional AC current where you plug your machine into the wall at home and you’re good to go, but there are a few alternatives.  All machines require filters that are specific to the individual machine or brand of machines and have a pressure setting designated by your doctor.  There are a few different types of machines, and typically the kind you need is determined by your OSA severity and individual preferences:

CPAP MachinesCPAP machines deliver a steady stream of pressurized air to treat your OSA by keeping your airway open while you sleep.  By keeping the airway open, the instances of apneas, where you cease breathing, are virtually eliminated.

BIPAP MachinesBIPAP machines work similarly to CPAP machines with one exception, it uses two pressure settings instead of one.  With the two settings for inhalation and exhalation, some users feel more comfortable and less like they are fighting their machine while exhaling.

APAP MachinesAPAP machines are essentially an evolving machine able to react and change your therapy pressure whenever needed.  They can adjust to variables like your weight loss or gain, sleeping position, or anything else that could change your pressure needs.

Your Mask

maskMuch like your machine, your mask is capable of being individualized to treat your specific preferences.  Your mask in most cases is worn over your nose or mouth and ensures the delivery of your CPAP therapy.  There are a few different kinds of CPAP masks:

Full Face Mask: Full face masks are typically worn over the bottom portion of your face and cover both your nose and mouth, but there are versions which cover the entire face.  These masks are good for those who breathe through their mouth while resting.  

Nasal Mask: Nasal masks are similar to a full face mask, but are worn only covering the nose.  They are ideal for those who breathe exclusively through their nose while sleeping.  These can also be used in tandem with a chin strap to ensure effective therapy delivery.

Nasal Pillow Mask: Nasal pillow masks are worn under the nose and have pillows that fit along your nostrils to form a seal.  They are the most minimally designed masks and can also be used in tandem with a chin strap.

Oral Mask: Oral masks seal outside of the mouth and along the inner lip.  They are good for those who breathe exclusively through their mouth.  It is often suggested that you use a humidifier if using an oral mask to minimize any discomfort from airway drying.

Humidifiers

CPAP humidifiers are devices that often fit onto your machine to add moisture to your therapy air.  Because of the pressurized air used in CPAP therapy, some users experience dryness of the air passages that can lead to sore throat or a desire to stop their therapy.  Luckily, humidifiers can help to eliminate any discomfort and create a more natural sleeping experience.  Whether you’d benefit from using a humidifier depends on a few factors like your personal comfort preferences and your location.  To learn more about the types of humidifiers and whether they would be of benefit to you, click here.

Final Thoughts

Of course, the above outline is not an exhaustive resource, but hopefully you now have a better understanding of the core items used in CPAP therapy. It is best to speak with your doctor to determine what is best for your individual needs.

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If you have any needs, concerns, or questions, visit our main website at http://www.cpapplus.com/

We would love to hear your comments or questions.

How Do I Chose A Sleep Apnea Machine?

CPAP vs. Auto-CPAP Machine

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If you have been diagnosed just recently with Sleep Apnea, it is not as complicated as it sounds.  There are many options when best trying to choose your care, but when discussing sleep apnea therapy, there is a lively debate in the community as to which machine is superior: the classic continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine, or the auto titrating positive airway pressure (autoPAP) machine.  While autoPAP machines are slightly more expensive, the devices can respond to long term therapeutic changes that occur in a patient’s sleep therapy lifecycle.  Some patients prefer one device over the other, and in this article we will discuss the pros and cons of each device as well as some long term trends affecting each machine’s popularity.

CPAP Machines

AirSense 10 Machine
AirSense 10 Machine

Traditional CPAP machines were created to supplement your normal breathing cycles and patterns through tubing and a CPAP mask.  It provides a pressurized stream of air to prevent apneas and hypopneas while sleeping.  Continuous Positive Airway Pressure is unanimously known as the best method to treat sleep apnea, and CPAP machines provide a pre-prescribed set treatment during the night.  Your doctor will have you attend a sleep study, which can indicate whether or not you have sleep apnea.  Before CPAP Supplies Plus/Direct ships your CPAP machine, we will set the machine with your personalized pressure from the sleep study to make sure that you receive the best experience possible.

AutoPAP Machines

ICON Auto Machine
ICON Auto Machine

AutoPAP machines provide the same quality therapy that the original CPAP machine provides, but can adjust to differing levels of pressure needs throughout your sleep.  Advanced technological sensors in the autoPAP machine detect changing needs in your sleep apnea therapy and change the pressure accordingly.  In clinical studies, autoPAP machines deliver more successful patient outcomes and can provide a more streamlined therapeutic experience.

The new trend in the sleep testing industry is to provide patients the comfort of their own home while testing for obstructive sleep apnea.  Home sleep tests, also known as a polysomnography, are heavily favored by most insurance companies due to their ease, reliability, and predictability.  After sleep testing, the data is sent to a doctor specializing in sleep, who then interprets the results.  In the event the patient does have sleep apnea, he or she typically is prescribed an autoPAP machine.  While the machine tends to be slightly more expensive, its dynamic pressure settings make it extremely popular to make sure patients’ changing needs are met over time.  Given changes in the insurance industry, the autoPAP’s popularity will continue to increase due to its ability to respond to changes in patients’ breathing needs.

Final Thoughts

Hopefully you now have a better understanding of what the equipment is, but it is best to talk to your Doctor to determine what is best for your individual needs.

If you have any questions, post a comment or feel free to contact us at CPAP Supplies Plus – 877-791-3195.