Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) affects more than 22 million people in the United States, which is why the condition has been studied to the extent that it has been. It’s also why CPAP machines have grown in popularity over the years. CPAP therapy has proven itself to be an effective treatment for sleep apnea and a major form of relief for many. What causes sleep apnea in so many people, and why is CPAP therapy such an effective treatment? Find out more about the condition and why CPAP machines are the best option for treatment.
What Causes Sleep Apnea
Obstructive sleep apnea is a condition that causes a person to consistently stop breathing while sleeping, causing them to snore and gasp for air in the middle of the night. This leads to minor disruptions in a person’s sleep, and while it doesn’t cause a person to startle awake, these minor sleep disruptions (which can happen dozens of time throughout the night) are enough to cause a person to feel tired throughout the day.
Obstructive sleep apnea occurs when the muscles and tissues in your throat collapse and either partially or completely obstruct your airway. This leads to lower oxygen levels and stress on your organs. Your brain sends a signal to your body to “wake up”, causing a microarousal whereby you may gasp or snort as you start breathing again. Often, these microarousals don’t fully wake you up, which is why so often folks who suffer from OSA don’t realize they have the condition. Untreated OSA, however, can have serious health consequences if it’s not addressed.
Why Do CPAP Machines Help?
CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) delivers gentle airflow to pressurize your airway to keep it open while you sleep. This allows CPAP users to sleep with few apneaic events (cessation of breathing) so they can get the restful, restorative sleep they need .
CPAP machines have proven to be far more effective that oral appliances and other treatments for sleep apnea. They also pose fewer risks and are less invasive than surgery, which is generally only performed when all other options have been exhausted.
CPAP machines are easy to use and certain models are even highly portable, like the Transcend 3 and 365 CPAPs. This makes them possible to be taken on the road, across the country and even on international flights, making CPAP therapy possible no matter where you are, and where you are going.