What are the Most Common CPAP Components?

There are a lot of odds and ends that come along with your CPAP equipment when first beginning therapy.  It can seem overwhelming, but luckily it’s not as bad as you think.  These parts are essential to your therapy, allowing your machine to function as needed.  Let’s walk through a few of the components.

Machine

Your machine does a majority of the work regarding your CPAP therapy.  It works by pumping air inside, pressurizing it, and delivering it to your airway in order to prevent apneas.  There are a lot of machines to choose from: traditional CPAP machines, APAP, or BIPAP machines.  Each work a little differently in that they are less or more advanced at changing your pressure throughout the night to fit fluctuations, but the basic premise is the same.

Mask

Masks come in a whole lot of shapes and sizes.  In practice, they fit over your nose, mouth, or both in order to shuttle air from your machine into your airway.  Which mask you choose is entirely up to you.  Full face masks cover your nose and mouth and are ideal for those who breath from both while sleeping.  Nasal masks cover only the nose, and can be used in conjunction with a chin strap to keep the mouth closed as needed.  Nasal pillows are a more streamlined version, using two pillows to insert into the nostrils to deliver your therapy.

Tubing

Your tubing, in its most basic sense, connects your machine to your mask.  There are upgrades you can make for your tubing.  Heated models are capable of warming up your therapy air to make you more comfortable, especially in colder climates.

Final Thoughts

Of course, the above outline is not a complete guide to the components of your CPAP therapy, but hopefully you now have a better idea of some of your options. 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.

How Does CPAP Therapy Work?

Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) therapy has been around since the 1980s, helping millions of americans suffering from obstructive sleep apnea.  Starting with work done by Dr. Colin Sullivan, CPAP treatment was founded on the idea that pushing air into the trachea would eliminate the instances of airway closure, or apneas, and provide an effective method of controlling OSA.  With the pioneering work of Dr. Sullivan, CPAP therapy grew into the leading treatment for OSA, now with a multitude of different manufacturing companies serving the wide range of clients.

Obstructive sleep apnea required a treatment to be able to keep the airway open in a way that was effective, but as minimally invasive as possible in order to allow patients to sleep soundly without interruption.  CPAP therapy filled this void and was able to provide a non invasive solution by pushing pressurized air to keep your airway open throughout the night.  This pressure is set by your doctor, and it changes depending on the severity of your OSA.  With more severe forms, greater air pressure is required to open up the airway.  Your CPAP machine uses electricity to pressurize your therapy, sending it from the machine, through your tubing, and into your mask for delivery.  

Final Thoughts

Of course, the above outline is not a complete guide to your CPAP therapy and its inner workings, 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 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.

Featured: ResMed AirStart 10 CPAP Machine

ResMed has launched it’s newest addition to its AirSense line over the Labor Day weekend – the AirStart 10 CPAP machine.  This machine boasts all of the comfort and design prowess that the AirSense line has come to be known for, with a number of great features that make this machine a great choice for virtually any user.

Heated Humidifier

The HumidAir Heated Humidification system is integrated into the AirStart machine.  Heated humidifiers actually heat the water in your humidifier chamber, allowing it to vaporize and be picked up more easily when your therapy air streams over it.  This type of humidification is great for users living in dry climates or those who suffer long, cold winters.  Heated humidifiers offer added comfort in the CPAP world.

Simplified Design

The AirStart 10 prides itself on being a more intuitive machine with fewer unnecessary bells and whistles than some counterparts.  It has a small footprint, making it a great travel machine option, and a less complicated set up.  Fewer complicated menus make this machine more streamlined in design and in use, simplifying your therapy and letting you get right down to use without having to worry.

EPR

Expiratory pressure relief is a feature that really looks to add comfort to the AirStart 10.  This is a simpler version of what BiPAP and APAP machines do; it allows a lower pressure to exist during exhalation, making the machine easier and more natural feeling.  It can also help eliminate any disturbances your machine can cause as some users are woken up by the high exhalation pressures some CPAP machines have.

AirView Technology

Many machines now allow you to track your therapy data and the AirStart 10 is no exception.  Using an SD card that fits into your machine, your therapy data can be recorded and sent to ResMed’s AirView system.  This allows you and your doctor to be able to pull up the data for review and see if your prescribed pressure is working properly or if adjustments are needed.

 

Overall, the AirStart 10 is designed with the user in mind.  It was built with a number of desired features that nearly all CPAP users are looking for, and at a fraction of the cost of auto machines it’s not hard to see why this machine has been so long awaited.  Check it out on our website here.

Final Thoughts

Of course, the above outline is not a complete guide to the AirStart 10, but hopefully you now have a better idea of if it will work 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 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.

Three Sleep Gadgets You Didn’t Know You Wanted

Overview

Our previous installment of the top sleep gadgets and continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) accessories was incredibly popular, so we decided that we would feature a few more of our patients’ favorite sleep therapy enhancers. Spanning the spectrum of comfort, care, cleaning, and more, these have been some of our best hottest picks over the years, and for good reason. Come along for the ride as we explore some hidden gems that will undoubtedly lead to more restful sleep and a better CPAP experience.

Meet Your New Traveling Companion

As any traveler with sleep apnea has had the displeasure of experiencing, the transportation security administration (TSA) requires you to remove your CPAP machine during security checks, just like your laptop and tablet. Many CPAP wielding travelers love the Devilbiss Intellipap for its light weight, durability, and ease of setup. Do you hate the hassle of removing it from your suit case? Hassle yourself no longer as you can now easily stow your Intellipap in this sleek grey bag that has enough compartments for your CPAP mask, machine, and tubing. A cool grey design will help you keep your cool at the airport during the long security waits. Join our top reviewer Kevin today and yield your stylish Devilbiss travel case on your next tropical vacation.

DeVilbiss IntelliPAP Bag dv51d-610_1

Your Own Personal Anti-Hurricane

The Siestamed Hurricane CPAP Equipment Dryer can’t be matched. If you don’t have the time to air dry your CPAP equipment after its daily hygienic washing, your next best move is to use the Hurricane Dryer. Safely remove all moisture from your equipment at a temperature that won’t damage your mask and tubing, nor compromise the quality of care. Due to its drying effectiveness, it will be ready well before you turn In for the night, allowing you peace of mind that your equipment is clean and will function at its peak performance to ensure your quality sleep and sleep apnea therapy.

Siestamed Hurricane CPAP Equipment Dryer he002_1

The Softest Boomerang

If you’ve ever thought that CPAP masks could be just a touch softer across the bridge of your nose, you’re not alone. The creators of the Boomerang Gel Pad agree with you and created the perfect product to reduce redness in a seriously comfortable way. With flawless reviews, this product is one of all time winners. Patients have noted less irritation, redness, and improved sleep since adopting the low profile gel pad.

AG Industries Boomerang Gel Pad aggelpad-ml_1

Final Thoughts

While we have only outlined three, there are many CPAP products that can enhance your therapy. At this point, hopefully you have a better understanding of a few things you can do to improve your quality of rest. It is best to speak with your doctor to determine what is best for your individual needs.

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.

What is a BiPAP and is it Right for You?

There are many different types of continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) therapy, each which has its own benefits depending on your personal and therapy needs.  A BIPAP, or Bilevel Positive Airway Pressure machine, has many similarities to a more traditional CPAP machine, but it also has important differences.  Both of these machines work to deliver pressurized air into your airway, helping to keep it open and prevent instances of apneas, when you stop breathing while sleeping due to airway collapse.  These apneas can occur up to hundreds of times per night and have dangerous health consequences if not faced head on with your doctor.

Respironics PR System One BiPAP Machine
Respironics PR System One BiPAP Machine

 

BIPAP machines are, in a way, a more sophisticated type of CPAP machine.  They still are delivering pressurized air to prevent apneas, but they are able to have dual pressure settings.  Some patients complain that with a traditional CPAP machine, they have trouble while exhaling or falling asleep due to the continuous, single pressure.  By having these two settings in a BIPAP machine, your doctor can set one pressure for inhalation and the other for when you exhale, helping to minimize any uneasiness during therapy.  The exhalation pressure is typically set lower which allows the user to need less effort to exhale while asleep and prevent any discomfort that can cause you to wake.  

These machines are often seen as the next step for patients who are having a difficult time with a CPAP machine, or whose OSA and OSA markers have not improved with the use of a CPAP machine.  They are also seen as a good option for users with low oxygen levels or even cardiac health problems.  Of course,  only your doctor can decide if a BIPAP machine is right for your OSA needs, but always speak with them about your concerns, especially if you believe your therapy is not working as effectively as it should be.

Final Thoughts

Of course, the above outline is not an exhaustive checklist on whether or not you should be using a BIPAP, but hopefully you at least have a better understanding of its differences from a traditional CPAP machine. 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 was CPAP Sleep Therapy First Invented?

Overview

If you are curious about the history of Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) therapy, you are not alone. Many CPAP patients often wonder as to the origins of their therapy, and how the underlying science was originally conducted that has transformed into today’s cutting edge Obstructive Sleep Apnea treatment culminating into products such as Resmed CPAP machines or Respironics CPAP masks. It all started with Dr. Colin Sullivan and his clinical experiments back in 1980, and has evolved into a group of more than 18 million americans alone.

History

The therapy was actually first tested on canines to determine whether the basic hypothesis was sufficient: focused, pressurized air would be able to essentially push through any obstacles that obstructed the airways. If this method worked, the first non-invasive therapy could be developed and patients could opt out of a costly, invasive, and inconvenient surgery. The first human test subject was a perfect patient to undergo testing. Suffering from severe Obstructive Sleep Apnea, the patient wandered into Dr. Sullivan’s office in Australia and sought treatment, but refused surgery. After agreeing to test trails of the brand new CPAP machine (now primative by 2016 standards), the seven hour treatment was a resounding success. During the process, Dr. Sullivan continued to increase pressure until Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) symptoms decreased and the patient resumed a normal, healthy sleep cycle. After awakening, the patient reported that he felt the best that he had felt in a long time. Dr. Sullivan continued to innovate in the field for years to come following his initial positive trials.

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Modern CPAP Therapy

Soon after, the first commercially available CPAP machine was launched in the United States by Phillips Respironics, and companies began entering the market to compete for the ever-growing patient base. CPAP therapy was first thought to be a short term solution to satisfy a patient until surgery could be performed, but it has transformed into a new standard of living for many patients who previously dreaded their lack of quality sleep and the adverse effects on their daily life.

baby-19295_1280

Final Thoughts

Of course, the above outline is not an exhaustive resource, but hopefully you now have a better understanding of the history behind the widely popular CPAP therapy that you might be using today. If you’re curious to learn more, the American Sleep Association (ASA) can provide more information on historic clinical trials and their outcomes.