Sleep apnea is the disease of a respiratory disorder that is set-off by disturbed breathing, which interrupts that all-important sleep. It is caused due to the air passages becoming narrow at the time of inhaling air, so then your throat closes and does not allow the air to pass through the lungs.
This condition decreases the oxygen level in the body and if left untreated can cause all sorts of problems that will eventually lead to a shorter life.Yes, in the end, if left untreated, your life will definitely be shortened.
I know that is not the kind of thing you will read in a normal, happy blog post, but studies have shown that if sleep apnea goes untreated, it will cause all sorts of health issues which eventually leads to a shorter life.
The people who go through treatment of sleep apnea are generally familiar with a CPAP machine and/or a BiPAP machine.
Both of these machines make use of the airway pressure method to help in clearing, or forcing air through the airway passage for easy breathing.
But there are some differences between these two (CPAP and BiPAP machines) similar machines of treatment.
What is a CPAP machine:
A CPAP machine helps to keep an airway open at the time of sleep. It is the normal treatment for sleep apnea and also for some patients who suffer from a neuromuscular disease.
CPAP machines provide air at a constant flow with the help of a face mask. This machine provides fixed levels of pressure.
This uninterrupted pressure of air keeps the airway open as well as helps to increase the flow of oxygen.
The air pressure is determined according to the needs of the particular person and prevents both the problem of snoring and apnea.
About BiPAP machine:
A BiPAP therapy machine is very similar in comparison to CPAP but differs also in a few ways. The BiPAP (bilevel PAP) provides two levels of air pressure that can be altered.
It is a non-disturbing ventilation machine. It delivers two levels of pressure to accommodate breathing that are:
- IPAP (Inspiratory PAP) is a high-level pressure that is applied at the time of the patient’s inhalation.
- EPAP (Expiratory PAP) is a low-level pressure applied at the time of exhalation.
This treatment is used for treating central as well as severe obstructive sleep apnea. This treatment is also suggested for the patients who are known to have different heart and respiratory diseases and also the pulmonary lung problem like COPD.
The altered air pressure helps to reduce extra carbon dioxide from the body.
Differences between CPAP and BIPAP
At the time of using a CPAP machine, the patient has to apply extra force while exhaling that is against the flow of air, which may disturb the sleep of patient.
And in BIPAP, the pressure of air is already set at low and high levels that make the process easier for the user. The BiPAP machine is costlier comparatively to the CPAP machine, obviously due to it having the extra feature.
Patients are recommended to use a BIPAP machine that are not able to adapt to the CPAP machine. This should, of course, be discussed with your doctor.
The other difference between these two machines is the noise factor. The BIPAP is noisier then the CPAP machine according to the patients who used both of them.
And settings of airway pressure of the BIPAP machine require to be monitored. So, before you think the BIPAP is better, think again. Both have their pros and cons.
It is clear that by wearing these masks and turning on these machines at the time of sleep can be uncomfortable or annoying.
But both the machines are designed to become user-friendly by keeping various features in mind. So a patient requires meeting with their doctor to get the best advice and device, which suits their necessities.