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(Continuous Positive Airway Pressure)

The CPAP system is an electronically operated unit that delivers a prescribed level of positive pressure non-invasively to the upper airway for the treatment of sleep apnea. The CPAP provides low-pressure airflow to the airways by means of a nasal mask that fits over the nose or nasal pillows, which are inserted into the nostrils. Air pressure holds the airway open, preventing the collapse of the palate and tongue over the air passage. Accessories such as nasal interface applications and humidification devices are provided to ensure patient compliance.

There recently have been newer versions of CPAPs that are easily portable, far quieter, and have less of a medical equipment look. In most cases, a CPAP is considered a carry on item when entering an aircraft. The latest CPAP devices have been updated that most would be pleasantly surprised how quite and comfortable they are.

The S9 Elite TM from ResMed has a sleek and modern look that departs dramatically from other CPAP machines. It nearly eliminates any noise to create a more restful night for both you and your partner. This machine has an enhanced auto set feature which can differentiate between and obstructive and central sleep apneas. This improved upon device not only is quieter and sleeker, but looks more like a clock radio than medical device.

REMstar Auto is a CPAP product from Respironics, with automatic altitude adjustment and C-FLEX, C-FLEX+, AND A-FLEX comfort features. It has a fresh and compact look.

Most insurance companies pay for all or a significant portion of a CPAP. Working with the respiratory therapist can only benefit your experience and results while using a CPAP. They help reduce problems such as mask fitting and suggesting a humidifier it you may need one to address nasal congestion and dry or sore throat.

CPAP masks have also “re-invented” themselves they are now more comfortable and easy to use as ever.

Categories of CPAP Masks:

Nasal Masks

These masks solely cover the nose completely; it moved up to cover the T-zone area of your face. It has forehead padding that creates stability when wearing the mask, but does not have a cover over any other part of the face.

Nasal Masks like the Comfort Select from Respironics and Ultra MirageTm II are perfect examples of luxury. They deliver a secure and personalize fit these masks have been built for comfort. Either with a dual-layer cushion or two-position gel spacer, these masks help fit 100% of patients while giving the comfort you deserve.

Full Face Masks

Full Face masks can range from covering the whole entire face (eyes, cheeks, nose, mouth, and chin) to covering just the nose, mouth, and cheeks. The full face masks are more for hard-to-fit patients, people who have dentures or nasal bridge breakdown.

Mirage Liberty from ResMed and Fitlife from Respironics are two examples of full face masks that provide a robust seal around less pressure-sensitive areas. Full face masks also accommodates movement during sleep even a solution for jaw drop.

Nasal Pillow Masks

For those who do not want any of their face covered this is the mask for you. It actually fits the outside of your nostrils. Easy to fit, assemble, and clean this mask simply has tubes that are directed right to the nostrils.

Examples of these masks could be seen from the OptiLife from Respironics or Mirage Swift Tm II from ResMed. Either way you may choose, these masks are light weight and provide a clear field of vision.

Some other important features to be aware of with a CPAP purchase are humidifiers and tubing:

Humidifiers can be a great asset to your CPAP experience and compliance. They snap in and out easily to your CPAP machine and easy to clean. Heated or unheated humidification, depending on your preference, will dramatically help with dry mouth, nasal irritation, or congestion.

If you are worried about condensation collecting in your tubing there is another alternative from ResMed called ClimateLineTm this tubing is heated to deliver climate control and eliminate rainout.