CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure): A machine used to treat sleep apnea. It is prescribed after a sleep study, during which the doctors determine if you need assistance sleeping and, if so, which settings are right for you.
Sleep Apnea: A condition which causes a person to stop breathing for several seconds at a time while sleeping. If left untreated this condition can cause major health problems, cause your quality of life to deteriorate, and shorten your life span.
Snoring is often an indicator that when your throat muscles relax the airway collapses, either partially or completely, thereby causing the loud noise associated with snoring as you try to breathe. A closed airway results in reduced oxygen in the blood, which can cause serious health issues. Also, if the closure is severe, you may wake up dozens, or even hundreds, of times every night as you gasp for air, thus depriving your body of much needed deep sleep.
Headaches are often one of the effects of lowered oxygen levels in your blood. Basically, the sufferer's brain is reacting to the lack of adequate oxygen. If the lack of oxygen becomes too extreme it can cause many other health issues, including heart problems. These headaches can occur either in the morning or the evening, or may be an ongoing issue throughout the day.
Obviously if your airways are closed enough to rouse you from sleep throughout the night, you will be exhausted the next day. If you have apnea, you probably don't even realize you are being jolted awake throughout the night. Despite thinking you slept plenty, you may feel exhausted and sleepy during the day.
Whether you snore or not, a tendency to move around a lot in your sleep can indicate a nighttime breathing issues that can be resolved with a CPAP. Another aspect of this restlessness is the inability to sleep for more than a couple of hours. Before I started using a CPAP, I subconsciously dreaded going to bed. In the back of my mind I knew that there was a problem because I woke up with a blinding headache every day.
Weirdmares are not an "official" symptom of nighttime breathing problems. I have included it because of personal experience. Weirdmares are strange, disturbing dreams that are not quite nightmares. I used to believe that there was something wrong with me, mentally, because I always had weirdmares virtually every night until I banished them by using a CPAP. It does make me wonder, however, how many authors' stories came from weirdmares like mine.
Obviously, I wrote this list mostly from personal experience. Many people think it they would have difficulty sleeping with a CPAP, but if you need one you will rapidly become accustomed to the mask. In fact, you may find that your CPAP becomes your best friend.
Good personal info of signs of needing a CPAP.
Jenny, even if he doesn't think he wants one, or thinks he won't be able to handle something on his face when he sleeps, please encourage him to be tested and get a CPAP if he needs one. The heatlh benefits are amazing and the dangers of not using one are immense. I know someone who had 3 heart attacks that the doctors attributed to his not using his CPAP.
I know someone that needs one of these machine. I'll remind him once again. Thank you for sharing this information.
Interesting and informative.
select one here...