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One of the most common types of therapy for obstructive sleep apnea is Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP). Simple in its concept, the CPAP device sends a gentle, steady stream of air through the nose and into the back of the pharyngeal cavity. The pressure delivered by the device prevents the collapse and blockage of the tracheal wall and soft palate thereby maintaining a patent airway.
Without proper guidance and encouragement, patients can easily become overwhelmed, even frustrated, ultimately resulting in poor compliance. Because various published studies have indicated that the first month of CPAP usage is crucial to compliance, The Sleep Center of Nevada has developed a unique management program. The program offers intensive patient counseling and education, monitoring for problems and compliance and follow-up for a full year. Our specially trained CPAP counselors work with the patient throughout the entire process. During the year, the counselors ensure the highest possible compliance by monitoring the patient’s progress through clinic visits and phone calls. Progress reports are sent to the ordering physician to keep them informed.
CPAP compliance for sleep apnea patients is the key to maintaining good health and preventing the onset of more serious consequences such as:
CPAP is an acronym for Continuous Positive Airway Pressure. By applying a positive pressure into the back of your throat, it will keep your airways from collapsing while you sleep.
BiPAP is an acronym for Bilevel Positive Airway Pressure which gives you a level of pressure as you breathe in and a lower pressure as you breathe out. PAP was applied during your recent sleep study and helped to reduce the number of times you either stopped breathing or had periods where you were not getting a full breath of air. More importantly, it allowed you to get a night of better and safer sleep
Yes, there are many different masks. Our CPAP Counselor can work with you to find the most comfortable for you. All of our Counselors are licensed Respiratory Therapists with many years of experience in sleep medicine. They will provide you with training on how to use the equipment with follow up visits to make sure you are successful.
PAP therapy can be a lifetime treatment for most. It remains the single most effective treatment for sleep apnea.
Today’s equipment is both small and lightweight. Most people take their PAP unit wherever they travel to so that they don’t miss out on a good nights sleep.
Whatever your decision is, you should at least try it for a month or two. If after trying it and deciding it’s not for you, you should at least look into other treatment options. Sleep apnea, if left untreated can lead to more serious problems later in life. Whatever you do, you should discuss this with your physician. A visit with to The Sleep Center of Nevada may also be beneficial.
Optimal CPAP therapy is every night and you should try to keep it on the entire night. In the research studies that showed benefit of CPAP, patients were using CPAP at least 5 hours/night at least 5 days a week. You will do best if you use it every night.
Your DME vendor is supposed to instruct you on care for your machine. General measures are to keep your tubing clean. In the morning, you can use a few drops of Ivory Liquid Soap in the tubing and flush with water until clear and hang up to dry until the evening. You can also use Ivory Liquid Soap on your mask and rinse with water to get rid of the facial oils. Clean your filters at least 1x/week. Let the foam filter dry out and do not put a moist filter back on the machine.
You should have a new mask, tubing, and filters at least yearly. Ask your treating provider for a prescription.
In general, you will remain on CPAP for the rest of your life, unless your sleep apnea resolves due to other treatment modalities, such as sleep apnea surgery, or oral appliance. In general, you need to lose 10% of your body weight to improve your breathing disorder. Weight loss may improve the severity of your sleep apnea but not necessarily cure it. Sustained weight loss is hard to achieve.