Sleep apnea is unfortunately becoming a major issue in the western world, with more and more people suffering from sleep disorders that can have a major effect on their general health and wellbeing. CPAP therapy is just one of many interventions that can be used to start to help the sufferer regain control of the situation,
Sleep apnea is a condition that involves the sleeper pausing breathing for a period of 10 seconds or more, and also has an effect of physiological indicators, like a rise in blood pressure, desaturation of the blood oxygen levels etc. CPAP, continuous positive airway pressure, to use the technical term, is a therapy that is used to ensure that the patients airway is kept clear and free from construction.
Then a sleep apnea episode occurs, the soft tissues that are found in the throat can become over relaxed and actually block the airway, either partially or completely. There can be a number of reasons for this, and obesity is one factor that is seen to be a large contributor to sleep apnea. As well as visible fat around the stomach and on the legs and arms, an overweight person also stores fat in the throat and around the internal organs. A weight reduction plan is one important method to reduce sleep apnea symptoms, often in conjunction with a CPAP machine.
CPAP machines are generally prescribed by a doctor, who will have asked the patient and probably sent them for a sleep survey at a local sleep center, where the patient will be rigged up to all manner of equipment and monitored throughout the night, with their sleep apnea episodes being recorded and analyzed by experts.
When the CPAP machine is set up, it requires the user to wear a mask, either over the mouth and nose, or in some cases, just over the nose. The air pressure is slightly higher than atmosphere, so the airway is kept clear by the positive air flow.
There are a few issues with CPAP, some users report a sore throat and headaches when they use it, but in general, the benefits often seem to enhance the side effects.
Travel CPAPs are quite small and have allowed many people to travel overseas safely and to continue their treatment while enjoying a holiday or trip away.
CPAP machines have come down a lot in price and can be bought quite cheaply at many of the online stores.