What is Sleep Apnea and what are the Symptoms?

Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) affects approximately 3 million Americans and has recently taken the stage as a more recognized medical issue.  OSA is characterized by the instances of apneas, when you actually stop breathing while sleeping.  This occurs because of a collapse of the soft tissue of your airway, actually eliminating the ability to breathe.  When these apneas occur, your body actually wakes you up in order to start you breathing again.  OSA sounds scary, and it really is if it is left untreated.  Luckily, there are quite a few signs that you could be suffering from sleep apnea, allowing clues for you to go see your doctor to get on your path to treatment.

One of the most obvious symptoms of OSA is the occurrence of these apneas.  Your partner may actually be able to notice these if they are near while you are sleeping.  You can notice them too; if you ever find yourself jolted awake, it could be your body waking you up to restart respiration.  Another very common symptom is loud snoring.  Again, your partner may complain of this and if you experience snoring with any other symptoms it is worth it to take a trip to a doctor.

There are plenty of other symptoms to look out for.  Because OSA greatly affects your quality of sleep, many of the symptoms are related.  Often, those with untreated OSA find themselves feeling tired throughout the day.  Along with this, you could experience irritability or mood swings due to your body not getting the deep sleep it needs.  Those with undiagnosed sleep apnea can even have poor job performance in more severe cases.  Even if these symptoms don’t seem like the end of the world, untreated OSA has been linked to an increased risk of heart attack, type 2 diabetes, weight gain, and more severe high blood pressure.  Because of this, it is very important that you see a doctor or schedule a sleep test so you can begin treatment.  Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) treatment is the most effective method of managing your OSA and is shown to help eliminate all of the aforementioned symptoms.  You will find yourself more alert, happier, and you may even lose a few pounds along the way.

Final Thoughts

Of course, the above outline is not a complete guide to OSA or it’s symptoms, but hopefully you now have a better idea of some symptoms. 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.

How Do I Make My CPAP More Comfortable?

Many CPAP users often have a hard time complying with their CPAP therapy due to some discomfort that can result from the different components.  Luckily, there are a plethora of products available to help minimize irritation caused from your mask or headgear.  The first step to ensuring comfort in your CPAP experience is to choose a mask that fits you well.  Masks typically come with a few different sizes of cushions, allowing you to pick the one that best fits your facial contours.  By choosing the correct size, you can ensure minimal irritation as your mask will move with you more seamlessly during the night.

One of the easiest products you can purchase to help rid yourself of any discomfort is a mask liner.  These are great for anyone feeling uncomfortable where their mask rests on their face.  By providing a barrier from the mask, mask liners can help reduce irritation and wick away any moisture buildup.  Many mask liners are not reusable, but there have been some more recent models that are completely reusable, a great option for users who find mask liners beneficial.  A slightly different model of liner is a mask pad, a reusable pad that rests on your nasal bridge to form a barrier between your mask and nose.  These pads are often made from a gel base that besides providing comfort, can actually help create a stronger seal with your mask.

If you’re finding that your mask is perfectly comfortable, there may be some comfort issues with your headgear.  Headgear has expanded in the past few years, providing a few different types of fit to try to minimize pressure points.  However, plastic joints or other parts can still cause some discomfort.  A great way to combat these plastic components is with a wrap that fits around the arms of your headgear, the portion between where it connects to the mask, often running across your cheek.  These wraps can get rid of any uncomfortable rubbing that your headgear can cause and help you rest easier.  All of these options are great to help you comply with your CPAP therapy.  Remember, down the line there are many complications that can occur related to untreated OSA, so it’s always a good idea to use your CPAP equipment every night.

Final Thoughts

Of course, the above outline is not a complete guide to CPAP comfort, but hopefully you now have a better idea of what products may be of use to 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.

Do I Have Sleep Apnea?

Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) has been on the rise in the last few years, now with over 200,000 new cases diagnosed every year.  But being as common as it is, many people suffering from sleep apnea don’t even realize they have it!  One of the most important early symptoms to look out for is excessive snoring while asleep.  Snoring could just be snoring of course, but OSA can cause this symptom due to the partial blockage of airflow through your windpipe, causing loud and persistent snoring that can disturb you and your partner.  Following this, if is very common to find yourself woken suddenly at night due to the instance of apneas, where you actually stop breathing due to airway blockage.  These instances could just feel like waking for whatever reason, or it could be more sudden where you find yourself gasping for air.  These are some of the earliest things to look out for in order to get yourself on the road to treatment.

If your OSA goes untreated for a more prolonged period of time, your symptoms could become much more serious.  Due to these mini waking periods, even if you get what felt like a full night sleep many sufferers find themselves exhausted throughout the day.  This can lead to irritability, mood swings, and a decrease in productivity, all of which can affect your relationships and job performance.  Waking, you could experience a sore throat, dryness of the mouth, or headaches, all of which can have you starting off the day on the wrong side of the bed.

Further down the line, sleep apnea has actually been linked to weight gain, diabetes, and heart disease when it goes untreated.  If you’ve experienced any of these symptoms, it is best to go see a doctor or get a sleep test done to avoid any further complications.  Treatments like continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) have been shown as the most effective means of controlling your OSA and reducing the risk of severe symptoms down the line.

 

Final Thoughts

Of course, the above outline is not a complete guide to Obstructive Sleep Apnea, but hopefully you now have a better idea of what symptoms to look out for. 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 is an Oral Appliance?

Some people suffering from obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) decide to abstain from traditional continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) treatment for a number of reasons.  Things like a mild form of OSA or extreme discomfort with traditional CPAP equipment can cause patients to opt for something different like an oral appliance.  Oral appliances are one of the newest treatment options approved by the FDA to treat mild to moderate OSA and many users find their less intrusive design ideal.

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Oral appliances are actually very similar in concept to a basic mouthguard.  They are inserted into the mouth but cover both the top and bottom teeth.  They treat OSA by adjusting the position of the jaw, jutting it forward slightly in order to prop open your airway, preventing airway closure in the process.  The oral appliance contains an adjustable setting that is set by your doctor to fit your jaw, and often it is recommended that you check this often to make sure it hasn’t shifted as this can cause unwanted issues.  

The advantages of using an oral appliance are many.  For one, they cost a fraction of the price of traditional CPAP machines which include numerous other parts that need to be replaced regularly.  They are also often the preferred method of treatment for those who suffer from mild OSA, as the oral appliance is less intrusive but is still able to prevent apneas.  Many users find oral appliances ideal for travel as well.  They are extremely compact, discreet, and don’t require any additional cords or parts to be functional.  These and other reasons may push you to try an oral appliance, but be sure to speak with your doctor to determine if your OSA can be effectively treated by one.

Final Thoughts

Of course, the above outline is not a complete guide to the oral appliance, 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.

Three Reasons to Use Your CPAP

Adjusting to your CPAP therapy can be difficult, but there are plenty of reasons why it should still be used.  Many new users find the transition into CPAP therapy uncomfortable, and therefore decide to stop using it thinking it isn’t really a big deal.  Unfortunately, not treating your sleep apnea can result in a variety of problems.  Here are a few great reasons why using your CPAP equipment nightly can benefit your health and mood:

Improve Your Overall Health

Of course, the number one reason to continue using your CPAP equipment is to treat your sleep apnea!  Preventing the instances of apneas while you sleep keeps you breathing steadily throughout the night, allowing you to rest more easily.  This results in a better night’s sleep and a better mood throughout the day, keeping you productive and happy.

Keep Better Relationships

Using your CPAP equipment regularly as advised by your doctor, you can improve your overall mood from someone who hates getting up in the morning to a person who can’t wait to see what the day brings.  This shift in attitude can greatly affect your relationship with your spouse, coworkers, and friends.  Not to mention, studies have shown that treating your sleep apnea can even help take care of issues with low libido!  Keep up with your therapy to keep up with your social life.  

Avoid Other OSA Related Health Issues

Sleep apnea has been linked to a number of other diseases.  Ailments like heart disease, obesity, diabetes, and high blood pressure have all been suggested to occur at a higher instance in those who do not treat their sleep apnea.  Continuing with your treatment can help save you a ton of money in the long run by avoiding these unwanted health issues.  Keep up with your CPAP therapy and help decrease your chance of developing these related complications.

Final Thoughts

Of course, the above outline is not an exhaustive outline of the benefits of CPAP therapy, but hopefully you now have a better idea of why you should keep it up. 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.

How Do I Know If I Have Sleep Apnea?

There are many ways that obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) can manifest itself, and the symptoms can be different from person to person.  Because of this, it is very important to talk to your doctor if you are worried you may have developed OSA so you can get the treatment you need to stay healthy.  The most concrete symptom of OSA is the occurrence of apneas, an instance where you actually stop breathing in your sleep.  This is caused by a partial collapse of your airway and can actually be noticeable by your partner due to the dangerous lack of breathing that occurs.  Alongside these apneas, you may have been told you are a loud snorer or sometimes cough or sputter after these apneas happen.

There can also be less obvious signs of OSA.  Many people notice that when they wake up, they experience an overall feeling of exhaustion.  This is due to the limited deep sleep that those with untreated OSA experience, as your body needs to continuously wake you up in order to stop the instance of apneas.  This tiredness can carry into your day to day life, affecting your mood and job performance.  Some people have even reported falling asleep behind the wheel, so this symptom can become quite dangerous.

Because of these symptoms, untreated OSA is a lot more serious than many people tend to believe.  Luckily, however, the use of Continuous Positive Airway Pressure treatment (CPAP) can eliminate these symptoms all together.  CPAP works by sending pressurized air through your airway to eliminate dangerous apneas.  As a result, you sleep more soundly and are therefore better rested throughout the day.  The pressurized air also eliminates snoring, providing better rest for your partner as well.  After initial adjustment, CPAP users often find they perform better at work and have better relationships with loved ones due to a healthier overall mood.  Start your journey to better health with us today!

Final Thoughts

Of course, the above outline is not an exhaustive resource of all OSA symptoms, but hopefully you now have a better idea of what to look out for. 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 Signs of Obstructive Sleep Apnea?

Obstructive sleep apnea affects about 25 million adults in the US alone, and many of the symptoms are not as obvious as you would hope. Probably the most common symptom that most adults experience is fatigue and tiredness during the day.  This tiredness can cause irritability, headaches, and general fatigue that many people report having a negative impact on their job performance or personal relationships.  At night, sufferers of OSA often experience frequent waking, sore throat, extremely loud snoring, and even night sweats.  

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Because of some of these symptoms, it is often the case that your partner will notice these issues even before you do.  That means that if he or she is complaining about how loud you snore, you may want to take it more seriously than as if it were just an annoyance if you have been experiencing any other symptoms of OSA.  Continuous Positive Airway Pressure treatment (CPAP) has been shown to virtually eliminate many symptoms of OSA outside of the instances of apneas leaving you and your partner more refreshed during the day.

OSA in children can exhibit many of the same symptoms, but it can also manifest in different ways.  For example, drooling or choking during the night is more prevalent in childhood sleep apnea than adults.  Just like adults, however, your child may start feeling sluggish and even fall behind in school due to the restless night’s sleep he or she is experiencing.  It is important to talk to your doctor if you notice these symptoms in yourself, your partner, or your child, especially since some symptoms are obviously not specific to only OSA and there could be a different issue surfacing.

Final Thoughts

Of course, the above outline is not an exhaustive resource of the symptoms of OSA, but hopefully you now have a better idea of what to look out for. Of course, it is best to speak with your doctor to determine what is best for your individual needs.

________________________________________

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.