Sleep Apnea & CPAP Therapy
Having a good night's sleep is a foundation for a healthy life. Often overlooked, sleep is a part of our existence and as important as any other awaken activity in our lives. Sleep is an essential function that allows your body and mind to recharge, leaving you refreshed and alert when you wake up – as defined by the Sleep Foundation. A thing that can significantly influence your sleep quality is having a sleep apnea condition. Sleep apnea is one of the main sleep disorders and it can influence not only the quality of sleep but medical/health conditions in general (up to pushing your health to the limits).
But, what is sleep apnea? How to know if you have it and what to do with it?
Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder in which pauses in breathing or periods of shallow breathing during sleep occur more often than normal (definition by the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute). According to some scientific and medical research data, these pauses in breathing typically last 10 to 30 seconds and can happen over to 400 times in one night, every night. The most common type of sleep apnea is Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA), which happens due to airways being physically blocked/closed, and it takes around 90% of all sleep apnea cases. The other two are Central Sleep Apnea (CSA) when a pause in breathing comes due to lack of breathing impulse from the brain, and Complex Sleep Apnea which is a combination of the two previous sleep apnea types.
Common signs of sleep apnea are reduced or absent breathing during sleep, frequent loud snoring, gasping for air during sleep.
Common symptoms of sleep apnea are excessive daytime sleepiness and fatigue, decreases in attention, vigilance, concentration, motor skills, verbal and visuospatial memory, dry mouth or headaches when waking, sexual dysfunction, or decreased libido.
Sleep apnea is diagnosed by doing a sleep study with the help of medical professionals in a lab or at home (usually by sleep expert physicians). It is a medical condition and it is treated as such.
The majority of the time, sleep apnea can be treated successfully by changing life habits and/or using Continuous Positive Air Pressure (CPAP) therapy (using a CPAP device).
Besides main CPAP therapy, there are sleep accessories that can help with or improve sleep apnea condition or therapy itself. One of those accessories is (CPAP) pillow.
CPAP pillow can help ease the CPAP use discomfort, relieve the head and neck pain, improve breathing.