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Madison Healthstyle

How does a CPAP machine work?

cpap machine questions

Continuous positive airway pressure machines (CPAP machines), are used to deliver constant and steady air pressure to a person’s lungs.

These machines help to prevent the collapsing of your airway when you inhale and are used for the treatment of sleep apnoea and other conditions. The machine has a small tank of water and a filter which works like a humidifier.

Connecting to the tank is a tube that extends to a mask which is placed over your face while you sleep, with a chin strap to secure it in place. Most masks will cover your nose and mouth, however other options will only cover your nose. 

A CPAP machine can only be prescribed by your doctor. They may require you to do any overnight sleep study in order to determine if your airway is obstructed whilst you sleep. A report of your sleep study will be given to your doctor who will then recommend a CPAP if needed.

CPAP machines can help with a variety of problems that related to obstructed airways while you sleep. Some of these include obstructive sleep apnoea, snoring, sleep related movement disorders, insomnia, shift work disorder, and narcolepsy. A full description of each of these disorders can be found HERE.

A common frustration in using CPAP machines is the adjustment to sleeping with a mask. Often, people will simply stop using the machine because of this reason. Other complications do exist such as having a dry nose, sore throat, nasal congestion and sneezing. Whatever the complication, the risk benefit needs to be weighed up to determine if stopping will cause more harm.

If for example a person was diagnosis with obstructive sleep apnoea. If not treated the condition can have serious and sometimes fatal complication. Sleep apnea can lead to your airway becoming blocked causing your oxygen levels to fall.

Consistent reduced oxygen levels may predispose to the development of high blood pressure, or stroke.

We all know what it is like to have a good night sleep. Waking up refreshed, ready to start the day is a feeling we all should be experiencing regularly. Look to your sleep as your body’s way of recovering from all the stressors of the previous day. If you think that you might be having issues with your sleep, the Sleep Australia website  is a great resource to help answer some of your questions. 

If you think you need a CPAP machine then please talk to your GP first. We don’t supply CPAP machines of course, but we could be able to help you with getting a good night’s sleep in other ways. Book a chat with one of our Team today to find out how you can make simple lifestyle changes that could really help you sleep.