HomeHealthCPAP:  CPAP as Cure: Machine Helps Restore Breathing

Breathing with Apnea: Machine Provides CPAP

A CPAP breathing machine is one of the most popular ways people choose to deal with sleep apnea. Within the broad category of sleep disorders, sleep apnea is one of the most common and problematic conditions that can, in rare cases,even cause death or serious health problems. Sleep apnea is characterized by temporary, repeated cessation of breathing while sleeping, due to either a partially or completely obstructed airway. The body naturally corrects the problem when it realizes that it is being denied oxygen by awakening itself to open the airway and resume breathing. Although this seems like a process that would be impossible to ignore, many people do not know that they suffer from sleep apnea because the stopping of breathing and the sudden awakening are usually not enough to bring the sufferer out of sleep into full alert consciousness. However, the pattern of breathing cessation is enough to disrupt sleep patterns and cause lasting fatigue.

The Function of a CPAP Breathing Machine

A CPAP breathing machine is an external machine that provides continuous positive airway pressure. It is effective because it corrects the bodily problem that results in sleep apnea: the collapsed airway. There are two types of sleep apnea. The first type is when the airway completely collapses and becomes impassable so that breathing stops. The other type is only a partial obstruction that does not hinder but dramatically decreases the amount of air that can reach the lungs. Because the amount is usually not enough to properly sustain the body and provide sufficient oxygen to all its parts, the body is still under distress and breathing becomes very shallow and rapid.

A CPAP breathing machine helps this condition because it provides a pressurized air supply that is transferred from the machine to the lungs through a breathing mask. Because the air is pressurized, it is firm enough to keep the airway open and not allow it to collapse in any way. In many machines, it is possible to choose exactly how much pressure and how the pressure is used in order to adapt it to the specific needs of your sleep apnea condition. For example, people who primarily suffer from partial obstruction of the airway may not need as much air pressure to maintain an open airway as someone with complete obstruction.

There is not just one singular type of CPAP breathing machine. There are many different options to choose from when considering the machines, such as the ability to adapt to different altitudes, provide different pressures for exhaling and inhaling, automatically sense what degree of air pressure is needed, etc. Although these machines can greatly improve sleep and breathing function, it is important to thoroughly investigate and try out a machine before buying to ensure that it works the way you expect and want it to work.

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