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    CPAP Machines - What is a CPAP Machine or Sleep Apnea Machine?

    When new to Sleep Apnea, you may have heard of Sleep Apnea machines called CPAP machines, APAP, BiPAP or some other term, like XPAP. CPAP stands for "Continuous Positive Airway Pressure", and a CPAP machine is a medical device that delivers the prescribed pressure through the airway so that a person can breathe during sleep. Sleep Apnea is a medical condition in which the muscles of the throat relax during sleep, causing a partially or completely blocked airway. In the process, the person chokes on air and can't breathe properly. Treating sleep apnea can provide many benefits, such as: reducing snoring, lowering blood pressure, improving energy and alertness, and making sleep more enjoyable!

    CPAP machines are Sleep Apnea machines that use a mask and hose. The mask connects to the face or nose and the hose connects to the CPAP machine. During sleep, pressurized air blows through the hose to the mask. When the person breathes, the pressurized air opens up the relaxed airway. CPAP machines can't deliver from a range of pressures, they can only blow air at one set pressure.

    Other types of Sleep Apnea machines can include APAP machines, BiPAP or BiLevel machines. APAP and BiPAP machines are different from CPAP machines in that they blow air at different pressures, depending on the prescription. APAP machines evaluate and delivery pressure on a breath-by-breath basis. BiPAP machines deliver one set pressure on inhalation, and then another set pressure on exhalation.

    Many users find APAPs to be the most comfortable option since they adjust automatically and provide the minimum amount of pressure to keep airways open. Some APAP machines also include a feature called "ramp", which starts out at a low pressure and then gradually increases after you fall asleep. Finding the best CPAP machine depends on a lot of things, and having the right equipment is critical. Having the right mask, humidification, hose, and tubing can all make a big difference in how the therapy benefits you.

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